Thursday, August 2, 2007


Once again, some 250 Kalinga folks in the United States, Canada and other countries including a few from the Philippines gathered last July 20 – 22, 2007, at Arlington, Virginia, for the International Festival of Kalinga Arts and Culture, dubbed “Amung” – the Kalinga term for a village celebration.

It was the 4th “Amung” and grand reunion sponsored by the Kalingas – North America Network (KaNA), a non-profit, public service corporation, founded in 2000 primarily to promote, preserve and perpetuate the traditional arts and culture of the Kalinga and other indigenous groups of the Cordillera region of northern Philippines. The event is held every two years.

The first day activities included the display and sale of Kalinga native crafts and an evening informal reception party for the early arrivals with native and modern dancing.

The second day was highlighted by the much attended workshops for youth groups and adult attendees on the Kalinga traditional dances and musical instrumentations along with a seminar on the peace and order situation of the Kalinga province in the Philippines. Resource speakers during the seminar were Kalinga ex-Governor Dominador Belac, former Kalinga provincial board member Iluminada Duyan and Dr. Manuel Belandres.

According to Marshall A. Wandag, KaNA’s current president and board chairman, an ad hoc committee will soon be formed with representatives from the various organizations in the United States and Canada with Kalinga memberships. The committee will strive to come up with strategies on how overseas Kalingas could help in the peace and order problems of Kalinga province.

The evening of the second day was capped with a dinner-dance highlighted with special presentations of Kalinga native dances and musical instrumentations by the youth and adult members who attended the cultural workshops, as well as performing troupes of the United Kalinga Apayao Association, the BIBAK club of Washington, D.C., and the sponsoring organization. Plaques of recognition were handed to the special guests from the Philippines and drawing of raffle winners. Modern dancing followed all through the night.

On the third and final day, an ecumenical mass was officiated by Bishop Prudencio Andaya of the Kalinga Roman Catholic vicariate. A picnic lunch was held and followed by an open forum with Gov. Belac and Bishop Andaya.

The “Amung” was coordinated by Connie Baluyan-Alfrido as chairperson. Other planning committee members included – Edwin and Mia (Apolinar) Abeya, Steve and Ester (Manangbao) Hogye, Phil and Patz (Acuat) Cabase, Elpidio and Gloria (Amiling) De Guzman, Henry and Nellie (Abeya) Pit-og, Tom and Joanne (Masadao) Skeel, Tommy and Junie (Belandres) Todas, Gary and Bridgette (Bondad) Sallidao, Julie Sawil-Morgan, Liza Agsib-Johnson, Anat Acuat-Alegre, Ted Acuat, Andrew Dompao, Michael Wandag, Janice Sugguiyao Shiu, Joe Alfrido and Adele Sugguiyao-Wandag.

The KALINGAS-NORTH AMERICA NETWORK, Inc. (KaNA), organized 2000, is a duly incorporated non-profit and public service corporation for cultural, educational and charitable purposes, primarily for the promotion, preservation and perpetuation of the traditional arts and culture of the Kalinga (and other Cordillera) indigenous groups of the Philippines. It has been granted tax-exemption under IRS Section 501(c)(3). Donations to KaNA are tax-deductible. Please consult with your tax advisor. Thank you for your support.

Marshall A. Wandag
President & Chairman of the Board
(323) 665-9771

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