Participants endure heat, long parade-A A +A
Monday, January 21, 2013
HAZEL Barro’s feet were caked with dirt when her group reached Fuente Osmeña Circle during yesterday’s Sinulog grand parade in Cebu City.
Despite the heat, the 13-year-old dancer from North Cotabato seemed full of energy as she danced on the street, shouting “Viva! Pit Senyor!”
Asked what motivated her to keep dancing with energy, she said: “This is a sacrifice for Sto. Niño.”
For Aljun Estrada, enduring the heat, thirst and hunger during the street dancing was a sacrifice worth making.
“It’s tiring but I enjoyed,” said the 19-year-old dancer from Lanao del Norte,Estrada, a first-time Sinulog participant, went to Cebu City bringing with him prayers to the Sto. Niño.
“I prayed that He would bless my family with good health and peace,” he said.
Braving the heat
Spectators of the grand parade, some of whom carried icons of the Sto. Niño, also braved the heat to watch the street dancing.
Leilani Del Castillo did not let the crowd and the heat stop her from watching the grand parade as part of her devotion to the Sto. Niño.
The 41-year-old Mandaue City resident and her husband went to Cebu City around 9 a.m.
They had to walk a long distance to get to Osmeña Blvd. because of road closures.
Not all survived the heat and the crowd, though.
Jackson Nogra, a member of Kabalikat Civicom, a non-government organization, said three persons fainted and were brought to their medical assistance booth.
A medical team from Miller Hospital, led by their emergency room supervisor Alphonse Yap, also attended to Jennifer Luaron from Marikina City.
The 34-year-old events officer suffered from nausea and low blood pressure.
“She said she lacked sleep and did not eat well,” said Yap.
The PRC and Miller Hospital were among the over 20 medical institutions that volunteered for the Sinulog.
Several accidents were also reported in yesterday’s grand parade, with at least two dancers brought to the hospital.
One was a 16-year-old dancer from North Cotabato, who was hit by a motorcycle on New Imus Road yesterday morning.
Renna Macaraeg was injuredin her right foot, said Philippine Red Cross volunteer Leslie Leyson.
Insp. Gomersendo Mandawe of Cebu City Police Office said the motorcycle was following the convoy of Cebu City Mayor Michael Rama, who surveyed the parade route, at 10:30 a.m.
The driver did not stop and attend to Macaraeg, who was not dancing when she was hit.
“She was not able to dance,” said Ralph Ryan Rafael, the contingent’s head in a text message.
Rafael said he caught the incident on video.
“Nobody stopped. They just left the child behind,” he said.
Macaraeg was able to move her right foot, but she grimaced in pain, Leyson said. She was brought to a hospital.
In another accident, the festival queen of Zamboanga-Sibugay was also brought to the hospital after falling face down while performing in front of photographers.
Sinulog Foundation Inc. executive director Ricky Ballesteros said the 17-year-old dancer (name withheld) was brought to the Chong Hua Hospital due to a gash on her chin.
Reports reaching Ballesteros said photographers were asking her to dance for the camera, but she lost her balance.
She could have broken her fall but she tried to save the Sto. Niño icon from falling and fell, hurting her chin.
As of 4 p.m. yesterday, the police and tanods under sector six on New Imus Road confiscated over 40 bottles of liquor, wine, beer and coconut wine from revelers who drank in public.
Chief Insp. Sarah Jean Recla, the Mabolo Police Station head, said a city ordinance bans drinking alcoholic beverages in public.
A few children also got separated from their guardians. Three lost children, including a five-year-old boy and a four-year-old girl, were brought to volunteer booths and barangay outposts.
Published in the Sun.Star Cebu newspaper on January 21, 2013.