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Mayor Inday Sara Duterte formally launched yesterday the 34th Kadayawan Festival at Dusit Hotel, one of the event partners of the city, almost a month before the festival kicks off in August.

“We celebrate it annually not just to give Dabawenyos a reason to celebrate; we do it so we do not forget where we come from and what blessings we have received through the years, blessings which we continue to receive today,” Mayor Inday Sara said.

She said the community will be coming together next month in thanksgiving for how the indigenous communities of Davao City have shaped the history of the city.

Among the reasons for this celebration, she said, is because “we have been blessed not just with natural resources but favorable climate conditions, a thriving economy and peace and order.”

“I am inviting everyone across the globe to come and visit Davao this August to witness the highlights, the sights and flavors of Kadayawan in Davao,” she said.

Mayor Inday Sara called on all Dabawenyos, Lumads, Muslims and Christians to go out and not just enjoy the festivities “but to use Kadayawan as an opportunity to continue to learn about one another, about what makes our culture unique and similar.”

She said Dabawenyos should use the Kadayawan as an opportunity to learn about what else they can do together as a multicultural Dabawenyo community to bring the city” to a future defined by our own terms, progressive yet sustainable, modern but guided by lessons of the past and the wisdom of our forebears.”

On the other hand, City Tourism Operations Office (CTOO) Chief Gene Rose Tecson thanked the 11 tribes of Davao for their continued support to the city and the community.

Through their support, she said, the Kadayawan has successfully showed not only the country but the world, the different cultural traditions of the city’s 11 tribes.

This year, she said, the Kadayawan will focus on the Bantawan or cultural shows featuring the traditions and dances of the 11 tribes while Dula Kadayawan will focus on the tribal games.

“This Kadayawan is different, as we have spread out the events during the weekends of the whole month of August to ensure the city will be able to accommodate more visitors during the Kadayawan month,” she said. CIO