Sunday, December 28, 2008

Giant Parols of Pampanga

Location: San Fernando, Pampanga. In the parking lot of the Robinsons Mall.

This event happens once a year.... at christmas time. Many of the barangays in Pampanga compete for " the Best Lantern ". This year... the competition was last December 20. The winners are farmed out to different locations such as.... Clark and Intramuros.

There were 5 giant lanterns ( measuring 20 - 25ft. tall ).... located in the parking lot when we arrived. They were from San Jose, San Nicolas, Del Pilar, San Juan Nepomuceno and Dolores....

The lantern show starts as soon as the sun sets..... the shows lasts for 90 minutes... first.... they start one at a time.... then... after the intermission... they start showing 2 or 3 at a time.... and lastly.... they do a simultaneous display of 5 lanterns... It starts at 6:30pm and ends at 8:00pm.

The giant lanterns are part of a tradition that started way back in the early 1900's when they were still using oil lamps to provide the illumination for the lanterns....

What is fascinating about this display ... is that it doesnt use modern high technology...the makers of the lanterns utilize old fashion techniques using rotors which switches the thousand bulbs on and off.....the colorful lights are synchronized to music, not by electronic devices but manually operated. These lanterns are mounted on the front of trucks which also contain the control rotors and switches....

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