'Giant Lantern of Hope' draws 30,000 spectators

CITY OF SAN FERNANDO — SM City Pampanga’s Giant Lantern of Hope spectacle has managed to draw a 30,000 spectators in what could also be the biggest gathering of people for an outdoor fireworks event in Pampanga.

With the tallest ferris wheel in the country as the backdrop, the 10-minute firework display managed to attract people from as far as Nueva Ecija, Bulacan and Tarlac provinces.

Families from Bulacan and Tarlac came early on Friday morning to witness the event.

Irene Cuenco, 51, said that her family had attended the two previous Lantern of Hope events. She added that attending the event has become a must to perfectly kick-start the holiday season.

Friday night’s attendees also included the younger crowd who came early from school to witness the event that featured impressive fireworks and the lighting of the 65-meter Ferris Wheel with dancing 12,232 lights.

Skyranch's “Pampanga Eye” inside SM City Pampanga has been transformed into the “biggest lantern of hope" since 2015.

Developed by SM Prime Holdings Inc., in partnership with S&T Leisure Inc. and Westech Philippines, the Skyranch offers around 20 rides.

SM City Public Relations Manager Rain Cervantes said that the event is the mall's way of spreading the spirit of hope this Yuletide season. She added that the event also seeks to provide mall goers from all walks of life a chance to see fireworks and light displays with family and friends.

"The point is they see this and they become inspired. Hope springs from inspiration," Cervantes said.
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