Artistically-designed Bancas  to cruise Agno River


LINGAYEN. Pangasinan  – A large cluster of artistically-designed bancas (water vessels) will again cruise along the clean and revived Agno River from sitio Bantayan, Pangapisan Norte here to Baῆaga bridge in Bugallon on May 1 as part of Pistay Dayat (Sea Festival) celebration.

Pangasinenses, revelers from other provinces and tourists from various countries can have the best vantage points to watch the grand fluvial parade atop and below the Domalandan Bridge here and Banaga Bridge in Bugallon and along the riverbanks of Agno River.

At least 140 contingents from Local Government Units (LGUs), National Government Agencies (NGAs), Non-Government Organizations (NGOs), Private Business Sector (PBS) and various stakeholders — depicting “I Love Pangasinan” as theme of their fluvial float entries — are expected to participate in this year’s fluvial parade.

Banca Parada is a component activity of the “Ilog Ko, Aroen Tan Bilayen Ko” environmental advocacy of the provincial government’s Coastal Resource Management Program under the administration of Governor Amado T. Espino, Jr.

Under the headship of Governor Espino, the provincial government in cooperation with LGUs and NGOs mobilized the Task Force Kalikasan which pioneered a series of operations in the dismantling of illegal fishing structures and dredging of silts from the basins of Agno River.

Banca Parada event chairperson Alex Ferrer, Provincial Employment Services Officer, said that registration of fluvial float contingents starts on April 6 to April 25. Only 70 entries shall be accepted for categories A (barangay) and B (NGAs, City and Municipal LGUs, business sector and stakeholders).

The entry/participation forms, available at the event secretariat at Provincial Employment Services Office (PESO), must be submitted personally or by fax at the Provincial Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Office (PDRRMO) located at Narciso Ramos Sports and Civic Center (NRSCC). For inquiries, interested participants may get in touch with the event secretariat at 0949-978-2529 or (075) 542-3347.

Only motorized bancas are allowed in the event which shall be provided by the participant or may be rented at Php3,000/unit (small banca) and Php4,000/unit (large banca) courtesy of the PDRRMO. The bancas will be ready for decoration at sitio Bantayan, Pangapisan Norte, Lingayen on April 30 at 1PM.

Props and decorations must be dominated by indigenous and biodegradable materials; corresponding budgetary requirement shall be shouldered by the participants.

During the fluvial parade, small bancas shall have five passengers while large bancas shall accommodate a maximum of 10 passengers.

Passengers are also encouraged to create gimmicks and wear any colorful uniform during the parade.

The Most Decorative Float in the contest categories will be judged on the following criteria: Ingenuity, Creativity and Artistry (30%), Relevance to the theme (30%), Dominance in the use of indigenous and biodegradable materials (30%) and Over-all Impact (10%).

The winners in the contest categories will bring home Php25,000 and trophy (Best Fluvial Float), Php20,000 and trophy (1st Runner-Up) and Php15,000 and trophy (2nd Runner-Up).

Awarding of winners will be held below the Baῆaga Bridge at around 10 a.m. led by Governor Amado T. Espino, Jr. with a special number of GMA Kapuso Aicelle Santos.

By Dexter A. See