Sunday, June 19, 2011

Rizal @ 150 | Happy Birthday Lolo Jose

Who would not know Lolo Jose? Every Filipino knows him for sure. He is the man whose head is placed on our 1 peso coin. He is the man whose name is now the name of a province, a lot of parks , a lot of streets, avenues and boulevards, a lot of schools, and hospitals. He's the man whose body is immortalized in almost every plaza of town halls and churches in the Philippines. He's the man whose works are giving headaches to third and fourth years high school students. He's the man who fought the cancers of society in his time. He's the man, a great man, who died for our nation's freedom. He is José Protasio Rizal Mercado y Alonso Realonda, Dr. Jose Rizal for short and today, we are celebrating his 150th Birthday Anniversary.

On his special day (a rainy day), a lot of events/parties are celebrated all over the country. One is the unveiling of the tallest Rizal Monument in Calamba, Laguna, wherein PNoy is their honorable guest. Another is in Zamboanga, particularly Dapitan City, where they are holding street parties and concerts. And in Manila, the officials of NPDC together with Intramuros Administration will not let this special day pass without taking part of this day's celebration.

Rizal @ 150 in Manila

Just this morning, a rainy one, people from different sectors came to Rizal Park to commemorate Rizal@150 by offering flowers at his monument (it is very rare that Rizal Monument is open to public for up close viewing). I am so honored to become part of this rare event, yahoo. After I offered my flowers, I stayed with a group of photographers and took the following shots.

flowers for Rizal
the honor guards of Rizal
the people did not mind the pouring rain.

Later evening, there will be a party at Fort Santiago in Intramuros. A party complete with food, wine, music and Rizal descendants, some will also come in their Rizalian costumes. Everyone is invited. Open to public at 6 PM, P75 and P50 for adults and students respectively. I hope the rain would stop pouring later night, see you there.

Jose Rizal is my hero, he is my Idol. Happy birthday to you.


UPDATE | Rizal Party at Fort Santiago

I was invited at Lolo Jose's birthday bash.

I came early, it was exactly 6PM, and the rain was still not stopping. I paid P100 as I entered Fort Santiago. The Manila City band was playing their music, and the Ateneo Chamber Singers were practicing their song, everyone was busy, I can feel that the event will start in no time. Then I saw the food services for the event, Ilustrado and Adarna, oops, they're not free. Also, a lot was wearing their Rizalian costumes, it is said that the entrance is free for those in Rizalian costumes.

men in costume of guardia sibil
Around 7:30 PM, the party started with the Manila City Band playing the Happy Birthday song. Then a big Noli Me Tangere cake came out. woohoo. After the blowing of the candles, the Ateneo Chamber Singers made the rainy night musical. It was followed by the fireworks display around 8:10 PM.

Lolo Jose's Noli cake
fireworks display at Fort Santiago

There's also a screen play of an old Noli Me Tangere film. Before I went home and faced the heavy rain, I bought a Malolos Empanada de Kaliskis (P60.00)   

the Original Malolos Empanada de Kaliskis, quite expensive but surely it taste good.



  1. nice post Ivan! a great tribute to our national hero, Dr.Jose Rizal with flower offering and all. Because it is a Sunday,I won't be able to participate in today's events. I will just try to commemorate his birth in pursuing the heritage trail! i hope the rain stop and those going to the "piging" like you will have an enjoyable time!

  2. Happy Birthday Lolo Jose! =>

    Nice pics. The rain didn't stop the Filipino people from celebrating our narional heroes birthday..




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