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35th Anniversary of the Philippine Fiesta of Victoria(Melbourne-Australia): Celebrated with Panache and Pageantry

By Manny G. Asuncion
November 29, 2017


Melbourne- November 25-26: Despite inclement weather, the annual Philipine Fiesta was held at the Polish Club at 19 Carrington Drive on 25-26 November.  The rain poured on the second day but it didn’t deter the spirit of joy and camaraderie among the Fiesta revellers.

This year’s Fiesta celebration was located outside and inside the Polish Club Hall.  For years, the Fiesta was celebrated at the Philippine Community Centre in Laverton and indoor at the Melbourne Showgrounds (once at the Historical Royal Melbourne Exhibition Building).

The two-day Fiesta celebration was formally opened on the first day by a Ribbon-Cutting-Ceremony headed by Mr Ross Manuel, the chairperson of the Philippine Fiesta of Victoria assisted by Ms El Anisha Guro from Marawi University,  with Fiesta Management Committee and the candidates of the Fiesta  Queen and Charity Quests. There was a Catholic mass on the second day, officiated my Father Joselito Asis with the choir, Harmonico Filipino.

The Fiesta guest speakers were Ms Natalie Suleyman MP, representing the Prime Minister and the Minister of Multi-cultural Affairs; Hon Margaret Guidice, Mayor of Brimbank Council; Mr Tim Watts MP, Member for Gellibrand and Ms Anisha Guro from Marawi University, Mindanao Philippines. Ms Guro delivered a heartfelt speech about the relationship between Muslim and Filipino Christians – a message of peace, unity and harmony.   
The two-day celebration was marked by a festival of ubiquitous Filipino food, sweets  and drinks; a remarkable exhibits that showcased the Philippine Arts and Culture and featured the early beginnings of the Philipine Fiesta (1982-2017); a whole day non-stop program;  a number of Filipino games and sports; Fil-Oz Song Birds Competitions; Karaoke; Fashion Shows; dry good sales (clothes, real states, travels & tours; toys, etc) and the yearly Grand Fiesta parade participated in by the different Filipino-Australian communities in Victoria. These festive activities were held inside and outside the Polish Club Hall. 

Marcelito Pomoy and Fasika Ayallew were the guest performers of the Fiesta along with Melbourne-based entertainers. Marcelito wowed the audiences by his uncanny talent of singing both tenor and soprano voices. He sang in Tagalog,  English and very lively Visayan songs the endeared him with the Visayan speaking audiences. Fasika, a half-Filipino singer from Sydney, was the third runner-up of the Voice Australia. She regaled the Fiesta attendees with her powerful voice. She did a duet with another  Filipino guest singer from Sydney,  Brian Lorenz. They sang Ikaw popularized by Martin Nievera and Sharon Cuneta. Marcelito and Fasika graciously performed for two days.

What made the Philippine Fiesta special this year was the colourful tribal dances from the different islands of the Philippines (Luzon, Visayas and Mindanao). These dances were delightfully performed by the candidates of the Mrs Fiesta Queen and Charity Quests 2017. The indigenous music, the primitive movements, the exotic and elaborate costumes, totally mesmerized the audiences.

Another feature of Fiesta was a Sari-Sari Store where one can buy an array of “Chi-Chiria” or snacks  just like in the Philippines. This store offered Nilagang mani (Boiled peanuts); Ice candy (which came in different flavours – Avocado, Mango, Mongo, etc); Balut; Itlog ng pugo (Boiled quail eggs)’ Hilaw na mangga (raw mangoes), Nilagang mais (Boiled corn);    and all sorts of glutinous rice cakes (puto, bibingka, biko,  kutsinta, etc); Hilaw na manga with bagoong (raw mango with shrimp paste), Pinoy favorite’s Banana Barbecue  and Nilagang mais (Boiled corn). There was even a replica of local Ice cream cart where one could refresh oneself with Sorbetes (Ice cream) and Sago-Gulaman.

The 35th Philippine Fiesta of Victoria was a success in spite of the intermittent rains that poured in the morning during the celebration. The sun shone gloriously in the afternoon that allowed people to move around and watched the entertainments offered by the Fiesta.

    Add a Comment

    Fridelia Mackenzie
    Sat 2nd December 2017

     Cheers to the organizers of this group Philippines Fiesta of Victoria.
    Manuel Asuncion
    Melbourne  Australia
    Friday 1 December 2017

    Sa lahat po ng tumangkilik  tumulong at dumalo sa Philippine Fiesta of Victoria sa Polish Club  Albion noong ika 25 26 ng Nobyembre 2017  isang taos pusong pasasalamat po ang ipinaabot ng Philippine Fiesta Management Committee. Sa uulitin po  Manny G. Asuncion
    Manny Asuncion
    Melbourne  Australia
    Thu 30th November 2017

    Maraming maraming salamat sa lahat ng mga taong tumulong  nagtaguyod at dumalo sa Philipine Fiesta of Victoria noong ika 25 26 ng Nobyembre sa Polish Club sa Albion. Ang inyong pagtulong ay isang malaking ambag sa pagkilala at pagtataguyod ng ating Pilipinong kultura sa Victoria  Australya.

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