• 2 years ago
Categories: Cagayan

3,500 students light up torch for Tuguegarao’s ‘Afi’ Festival

FIERY. About 3,500 students dance with their torch during the opening ceremonies of Tuguegarao's Afi Festival in Cagayan Sports Complex on Friday, August 11. Photo courtesy of Photo City Digital

TUGUEGARAO CITY, Philippines– Thousands of students holding torches danced at the Cagayam Sports Complex to mark this year’s opening of Tuguegarao City’s “Afi” Festival: on Friday, August 11.

Dr. Chita Ramos, a dean of Cagayan State University (CSU) and the over-all in charge of the dance, said the 3,500 students are composed of the junior high school students of Cagayan National High School and the students of the College of Human Kinetics (CHK) in CSU.

The dance, watched by over 10,000 crowd, depicted the tradition, religion and culture of the people of Tuguegarao.

The city is celebrating is now celebrating the third Afi Festival.

Afi is an Ibanag word which means “fire.” The city started the “fire” festival in 2014 to celebrate the title of Tuguegarao as the hottest city in the Philippines.

The hottest temperature ever recorded in history happened in the city in May 11, 1969 with a scorching 42.2 degrees celsius.

Councilor Jude Bayona said they have since institutionalize the festival becase they want “to establish our own festival since Tuguegarao came from Afi, which means fire.”

History said Tuguegarao was once a vast forest and grassland and was cleared by burning. The words “Tuggi” and “Aggao,” which means fire and day respectively, are said to be the origin of the city’s name.

Photo courtesy of Photo City Digital

Mayor Benben De Guzman said they are now preparing to beat the Guinness Book of World title of Indonesia for having the most number humans parading with torch.

Indonesia, in 2011, set a world record with 3,777 of flaming torches.

De Guzman said they will be inviting representatives from the Guinness for the next year’s festival as they vie to beat Indonesia’s record.  Northernforum.net

Raymon Dullana: Raymon Dullana is The Northern Forum's news contributor and former editor in chief. He also works as correspondent for Rappler.com.