I was so lucky to be one of the delegates of the Department of Science and Technology (DOST) to attend the National Science and Technology Week (NSTW) Mindanao Cluster Fair on 9-15 October 2012 at KCC Mall, General Santos City.
Since General Santos is part of Mindanao and it was my first time to be there, I can’t delude myself to think about my safety in that place. However impressions changed when I actually get there, talked to the people, see their hospitality and kindness.
As their slogan says “Gandang-Gensan” bannered in every corner of the city, General Santos City is indeed a beautiful and peaceful place to visit.
One thing you may appreciate visiting Gensan is their huge cultural heritage – their dances, dialects, beliefs, foods (of course) and their strict “halal” regulations.
During our fellowship night (DOST fellowship night), I was amazed on the way they welcome us – bountiful food, colorful costumes, cultural dances and their happy and approachable people — they call it Pagana Maranao.
Pagana Maranao is their native way to welcome special guests and visitors. This is a customary and traditional conduct depicting their innate hospitality, carried out in an elegant festivity and gaiety in a manner acceptable to Islamic laws and principles.
Generally, during Pagana Maranao, both the hosts and the guests are expectedly well-dressed in malongs or tutubs, the Maranao’s native dress.
There were also banquet of native delicacies served throughout the event.
While everyone is enjoying the food, we were entertained (and dumbfounded) by their cultural presentations. Amazing!