[IN PHOTOS] Sinulog amid the pandemic: Just another day in Cebu City
CEBU CITY, Philippines — Streets in Cebu City usually erupt in colors every third Sunday of January as millions visit here to celebrate the Sinulog Festival, the secular celebration in honor of the Señor Sto. Niño.
They have witnessed the lively performances from contingents around the country competing for the Ritual Showdown; intricately adorned floats, puppets, and higantes during the Grand Parade; and even the rowdy street parties.
But in 2021, as the coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) pandemic continues to rage on, the Feast of the Holy Child in Cebu City is just like any other ordinary day for Cebuanos except for small decorations and huge speakers playing the Sinulog beat to solemnly celebrate this tradition.
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Gen. Maxilom Avenue
Popularly known as Mango Avenue, Gen. Maxilom Avenue, has always been part of the Carousel Route for the Sinulog Grand Parade.
Aside from being the venue where judges see the performances by contingents for the Street Dance competition, Mango Avenue is also connected to Juana Osmeña Street which has gained notoriety over the years due to the street parties that often go awry there.
On Sunday, January 17, 2021, Mango Avenue, however, was virtually empty except for a few vehicles passing by.
Fuente Osmeña Circle
This iconic rotunda park in uptown Cebu City is the last stop for contingents before entering the Cebu City Sports Complex (CCSC) where they will perform, for the last time, for the Ritual Showdown.
Fuente Osmeña Circle is also where performers often take a break before walking another kilometer along Osmeña Boulevard towards CCSC.
Ordinary scenes like these near the Fuente Osmeña Circle, however, mark the third Sunday of January 2021, in what would have been a full-blown Sinulog celebration with millions expected to crowd the city’s streets.
All physical events in line with the Sinulog Festival this year were cancelled due to threats of COVID-19. /dbs
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