Tuesday, July 3, 2012

MUDPACK Festival 2012, Mambukal Mountain Resort

Mambukal Mountain resort
16th Mudpack Festival, June 23, 2012

                It was Saturday, and  time for us to go and witness the annual Mudpack Festival in Mambukal for the first time. We left for Mambukal around 7:30 in the morning and arrived at the festival site around 8 o'clock. We paid P50 for the entrance fee and P15 for the parking space. 
                 The resort was quite crowded already when we arrived. Good thing there was an available parking space for us at the main pathway into the resort. There were a number of kiosks already setup at their own favourite spot in the resort. 
                 We were informed then by some of our friends here that the Mudpack Contest will start at 2 o'clock in the afternoon. Unlike last year, and the previous years it usually starts in the morning. Well, it was still good news for us though. We have the whole morning to take still photos, take some refreshments and stroll around the resort. But before wandering around, we first heard the Holy Mass at the open area in front of the Ishiwata Bathhouse.
Mambukal Mountain resort
The streamer posted at the side of the main road
                        As we approached the camping ground located at the higher area of the resort, we saw tents of various sizes. These tents are the belongings of some of the campers who stayed at least overnight inside the resort to watch the annual festival, while some are owned by some of the performers of the festival. Aside from the tents, we also heard the loud sound of drum beats and people yelling from a distance. These people were visitors from other places and not participants of the show later, I guess they wanted to express the excitement of the festival by simply dancing to their hearts content along with the beat of the drums in front of them without minding the other people watching them nearby.
Mambukal Mountain resort
young drummers
                                                                                   


tents
The Painting Session

Mambukal Mountain resort
                    It was almost lunch time when we saw these group of boys covering each others body with mud gathered from somewhere within Mambukal resort in preparation for the upcoming show after lunch. Some covered their bodies with golden brown mud and some covered theirs with white mud. Once the mud got dried, it is then ready to be painted with various drawings using different colors.



Mambukal Mountain resort      
     
Mambukal Mountain resort
The golden brown boys















Lunch time

               After nearly an hour of strolling all around the resort, we agreed to go down back to the our parking space to rest for awhile. Then, we decided to unpack our lunch from the truck and to eat at the bed of the pick up truck. We did not get ourselves a cottage because obviously we thought it was no longer necessary. We had pork barbeque, lechon manok from Chooks To Go!, ice cold Coke, and of course loads of steamed rice. We picked a nice spot for our parking space, we were under a big tree at the side of the main pathway. Well, everyone smiled at us when they saw us enjoying our lunch at the back of the pick-up truck parked at the side of the main road.

Our lunch
Mambukal Mountain resort
My hungry boyfriend

Mambukal Mountain resort
                        This cat was watching us from below the SUV nearest to us. He seemed hungry but unlike the other stray cats, he just waited for us to throw him some meat and chicken bones. What amazed me were his eyes. The left eye is color green and the other is dark brown. He was aware that I made him a model, yet he did not care. I took several photos of him hoping to catch a clearer view of his eyes. In fairness to him, I gave him more meat and more bones.

The Mudpack Show

Mambukal Mountain resort
                 It was almost two o'clock, all participants gathered around near the stage and the crowd had already occupied the audience seats. I took a chance to take a photo of this one, cute participant beside me who silently watched some of his co-participants practicing some moves for their show.
                  A group of drum beaters initially entertained the audience by hitting the drums loudly with matching body moves and facial expressions. Good thing that the weather joined the celebration because it did not rain, although it was cloudy.
                







Mambukal Mountain resort
The drummers

                       The celebration was officially opened at exactly 2 o'clock in the afternoon. The program was started by this old man who I noticed was offering something to heaven or to Mother Nature near the stage. He was bringing a large green leaf full of white and golden brown mud which he later applied to the face of almost every individual in the audience area for free. Well, the people gladly presented themselves to have their faces marked with the mud, which is said to give good health the year round.

applying the mud to the crowd

my boyfriend with the mud on his face

Mambukal Mountain resort
Group number 1
                The show started and the first performers were these guys wearing tight, blue shorts. Each group participants must perform in accordance to the theme,  "Water: Conserve. Preserve. Protect." There were a number of group performers in the afternoon. In every group, I estimated more or less ten (10) minutes were allotted per performance. Thanks to the effort of Engr. David James Luke Tagamolila (DJLT Photography) for capturing some of the photos during the contest.

Group number 1

Mambukal Mountain resort
Group number 2

Group number 2

Group number 2

Mambukal Mountain resort
Group number 3

Group number 3

Mambukal Mountain resort
Group number 3

Mambukal Mountain resort
                    We only saw the performances of the first three groups. We were not able to capture the performances of some of the groups because it started to rain and we needed to go back down to Bacolod City. The contest for the solo performance was scheduled on the following day, but we decided not to come back for some important reasons. 
                       The festival was actively participated by young and talented boys and girls. The concept of the event was very informative and through the Mudpack festival the importance of conserving water was strongly pronounced to everyone who witnessed the event. I observed that this particular annual festival was provided with a small budget, and yet it was a success! Hopefully, next year a more exciting, expansive and rich 17th Mudpack festival to look forward to.

                          More pictures to share and stories to tell next time!

                          Truly, more fun in the Philippines! Until next time, God bless!

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