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Pintaflores Festival in San Carlos - Me? A Judge?!

What to do?! What to do?! I got invited to be a judge in a major festival in the city of San Carlos in Negros Occidental. My real friends know that I'm shy (lighter version - introvert) type of person who would rather stay in the background than be in front of hundreds of people who worked with all their hearts to make a perfect and winning performance. Many of them were looking at me trying to read my face whether I got their approval.

Already on its 22nd year, the Pintaflores Festival is a unique combination of "Pintados" (painted) and Flowers (guess what) held every November 3-5 and culminating on the 5th with the competitive street dance and a ritual version inside the huge city auditorium. This is their way of celebrating their fiesta in honor of San (ehem! tocayo) Carlos Boromeo.

 I witnessed the Pintabata which means... you guessed it - competing delegations of kids wrapped in colorful costumes (which is actually an understatement!)

My gulay, the enthusiasm!

How can you not be entertained?!

And have you noticed something consistent in the photos? I could not stop giggling while watching and trying my darnest to be an objective judge.

 Each delegation has a "queen" who is the most adorned by several pounds of colorful costume. If you realize the reason for the festival and the amount of effort poured by everybody for this event and their own delegates, you'll have nothing but respect to all of them.

And maidens of the queens

You'll get dizzy if you try to see the details.

 Every element (err... participant) adds to the quality of a performance. See those propsmen? Boy, talk about coordinated and frenzied movements. Oh, and there's also that happy little angel! :)

There are other invited delegations that participated for a different category like this group that came from the town of Kabankalan. 

And Bayawan from the neighboring province of Negros Oriental.

If the Kabankalan delegation gave honor to the Aetas, this Bayawan group had the scarecrow as its central theme. You might wonder how can a scarecrow festival be impressive. I tell you - you should personally witness how they do it!

 The winning group for the Masskara Festival in Bacolod City also provided an exhibition performance.

 Done with my street performance judging, I found out that the best performance of all the groups were reserved for the ritual version in the auditorium! Its a good thing I decided to use my judge's privilege to use the backdoor.

I got a photo of only one of the queens. I leave it up to your imagination what it would probaly look like when you see all the five queens in one floor.

How to get to San Carlos? There are actually 3 ways! From Bacolod City (and you have a choice between a mountain or a seaside road), Dumaguete City, and even Cebu City (bus to Toledo then ferry to San Carlos).


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