THE Silver MassKara Festival Organization Inc. (SMFOI) in Bacolod City launched the Ruby MassKara logo and the countdown to the 40th MassKara Festival at the Bacolod Government Center Saturday afternoon, September 7.
The ceremony was led by Mayor Evelio Leonardia along with festival director Eli Francis Tajanlangit, and Councilors Israel Salanga and Lady Gles Pallen. The MassKara organizers and staff Rudy Reveche, RJ Lacson, Mark Lester Jarmin, Claudia Cojuangco, Sonny Cabahug, and Ryan Saez also joined them.
The Ruby MassKara logo was created by artist Mark Lester Jarmin who incorporated elements from the first festival logo designed by Ely Santiago.
This year’s theme is “Bacolod City of Smiles.” The festival will start on October 8 to 27.
Jarmin said the logo features Yuhom, the MassKara icon introduced three years ago, dressed up as a MassKara dancer, wearing a mask with 40 colorful feathers symbolizing the 40 years of the festival and a crown with a ruby gem and eight diamond studs for the eight decades of Bacolod.
“Yuhom” is a Hiligaynon word that means smile.
Jarmin said the logo also features the red elements from the first logo as well as the next “MassKara.”
He said “Yuhom” is also jumping as an expression of excitement for the 40th celebration of the MassKara Festival.
Leonardia said the MassKara is now a full-grown international and global material.
“We’re looking forward to a MassKara like no other,” he said.
He added that he also insisted to Tajanlangit to re-launch the city’s image as a “City of Smiles.”
Tajanlangit said the festival opening will be on October 8 at the Bandstand of the Bacolod Public Plaza at 6 p.m.
He said there will be a presentation of streetdance entries, a parade of 2018 winners led by MassKara Queen 2018 and her court, Nights of Mardi Gras, Tanda winners, street and arena dance competitions, MassKara Dance Showdown, presentation of MassKara Queen 2019 candidates and the opening of food and beer kiosks then, followed by a fireworks show.
Other major activities are the Congressman Greg Gasataya face-off, the MassKara Choreographers showdown, MassKara Children’s Party, the Search for MassKara Queen 2019, MassKara Fashion Show and Costumes exhibit, Nights of Mardi Gras, Electric MassKara at the Bacolod Tourism Strip, and the Street Dance competition in the barangay and school categories. Other minor activities will be announced soon.
Lacson will also have an art installation at the Bacolod Government Center, while Cojuangco will also do the 40th MassKara Festival documentation.
For his part, Salanga, who was assigned on the festival sites, said he has already coordinated with the Bacolod City Police Office (BCPO) to ensure the peace and order of the festival.
He said hundreds of policemen will be assigned to maintain the peace and order of the festival.
The festival sites are the Bacolod Government Center, Bacolod Public Plaza, and the Lacson Tourism Strip.
Salanga said they will hold another meeting this week on how to regulate the vendors in the said festival sites as well as the kiosks rental.
The City Government will also ask the Philippine National Police to implement a total gun ban during the highlights of the festival.
City officials will also invite President Rodrigo Duterte to grace this year’s festival. At least three ambassadors already confirmed their attendance and two company presidents from their international sponsors are also coming.