Ana Kalang Festival
The town of Nagcarlan, Laguna, located 105 kms. South of Manila, supposedly got its name from the legendary head of the tribe before Christianity was brought to the Philippines- Ana Kalang. This beautiful and capable leader, allegedly saw the Virgin Sta. Ana, who took the poison out of the lanzones fruit so that it can be edible, thus, the name Ana kalang Festival, in honor of the fruit which is one of the town’s main agricultural product.
As early as September, lanzones are ready for harvesting but it is in the month of October when the fruit really is in abundance. Lanzones harvesting is a busy time for the Nagcarleños, with people from different places troop to this town to buy the fruit, either importing the product to resell in their particular towns or for personal consumption. This led the local government to conceptualize the Ana Kalang Festival. Originally held during the early weeks of October, the festival includes school bands exhibition, folk games, search for the Princess and Queen of the Festival, cultural presentations of students and local organizations, and the town parade. Now nearing its ninth year, the festival, which was first held in 1987, had changes made for the betterment of its celebration. One of these is changing its schedule, now celebrated in the time for the semestral break of the students, and including more activities and presentations. Among the latter year inclusions are the Kusina ni Ana Kalang, Pamana ng Lahi, Hiyas ng Nayon organized town tours, Paligsahan ng Pabitin and the colorful Street Dancing.
With this, the trip to Nagcarlan will not only have the people enjoy the fruit that was once believed to be poisonous but also to witness the talents that the townsfolk’s has also been endowed with, giving us a glance of their rich cultural heritage.