While visiting family in my birth town in Pampanga, Philippines I got the chance to witness the 101st year celebration of the Giant Lantern Festival (Ligligan Parul). Below is a little history of this annual festival, which is held few days before Christmas:
The Giant Lantern Festival is an annual festival held in December (Saturday before Christmas Eve) in the CITY OF SAN FERNANDO in the PHILIPPINES. The festival features a competition of giant lanterns. Because of the popularity of the festival, the city has been nicknamed the “Christmas Capital of the Philippines”.
The first lantern festival was held to honor PRESIDENT MANUEL L. QUEZON. At that time, Quezon made ARAYAT his rest area and converted MOUNT ARAYAT into a tourist resort. As a show of gratitude to Quezon, the people of San Fernando held a Christmas lantern contest to honor the first family. Quezon himself donated the prize for his lantern contest, which was personally awarded to the winner by First Lady AURORA ARAGON QUEZON.
In the years that followed, more innovations were introduced to the giant lanterns. Colored plastics replaced traditional papel de hapon. Large steel barrels called rotors also substituted the hand-controlled switches to manipulate the lights. And lanterns have grown in size, approximately 20-feet today, and illuminated by about 3,500 to 5,000 light bulbs.
It was an honor to have photographed the wedding of Miss Pennsylvania USA 2011 Amber-Joi to the love of her life Tommy at The Ritz-Carlton Philadelphia. It was such a gorgeous Spring day for a perfect wedding of this beautiful couple. Amber-Joi looked absolutely stunning in her YSA Makino wedding gown, which was featured on TLC’s Something Borrowed, Something New.
Happy First Year Wedding Anniversary to Linda and Manny!
We met Linda and Manny through the wedding planner extraordinaire Ted Martinez. They are such an amazing couple! We had an amazing time photographing their engagement at the Highline and Meatpacking district in New York City. And their wedding at the Brooklyn Bridge Park was a treat especially having the view of the Manhattan skyline in the background. Linda and Manny, thank you so much for letting us document your beautiful wedding. Wishing you continued happiness. Here’s to re-live those beautiful moments…