HUNDREDS of foreign tourists, balikbayans and overseas Filipino workers (OFWs) arrived at Mactan Cebu International Airport yesterday to witness the 30th Sinulog Festival in Cebu City on Sunday.

Ahmed Cuizon, public affairs manager of Mactan Cebu International Airport Authority (MCIAA), said that there were 80 foreigners, balikbayans and OFWs who arrived at 9 a.m. yesterday.

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Over 200 arrived later on board flights from the United States and Hong Kong but had connecting flights from Canada and the Middle East.

Another batch of balikbayans and tourists will arrive today and will be welcomed by the Balik Cebu Committee and officials from the Department of Tourism, Cebu City Tourism Commission (CCTC), owners and representatives of travel agencies, and MCIAA officials.

The guests were welcomed with a Sinulog dance performed by the Apas National High School students.

MCIAA general manager Danilo Augusto Francia ordered that the international arrival terminal be decorated for the balikbayans.

Cuizon said there will be a Balikbayan party at The Terraces at Ayala Center Cebu Park tonight, organized by the CCTC and the Balik Cebu Committee.

Among those who arrived were Lydia de Gracia Abrogar, a nursing director of New York Eyes and Ears Infirmary and her husband Robert Abrogar.

Lydia, a sister of retired Regional Trial Court Judge Fortunato de Gracia Jr., said they are here to witness the fiesta of Senior Sto. Niño.

Lea Nemenzo Escobar, a former nurse of the Visayas Community Medical Center, came home with her husband Roy and their child. Lea who works as a nurse at the Doctor’s Hospital in the Bahamas said that they came home to thank Senior Sto. Niño for all the blessings her family received.

The others were Dr. Josephine Bascog Paxson from Virginia; Felisa Chiamare from Jackson Center; Rizalina de Asis from Chicago, Illinois.