Once again its that time of the year, time to celebrate all that is mango. On Guimaras the mango is not just a fruit, its a way of life. Known (among Filipinos) as having the worlds sweetest mango, Guimaras takes immense pride in hosting the annual Manggahan Festival, coinciding with the plentiful mango harvest (April-May). Manggahan Festival has everything from all you can eat mango contests (I ate 6, the winner ate 40), to mango art, mango themed songs, and countless mango food goods.
Similar to last year, I hosted an environmental education booth, providing information on the coastal ecosystems, marine protected areas, and on proper waste disposal. Perhaps the most impactful display was one that showed the top ten countries for mismanaged plastic waste, ranking the Philippines 3rd in amount of plastic waste disposed directly into the ocean, an estimated 1.88 million metric tons annually. The booth also had games for kids and adults, the most popular of which asked participants to match trash with how long it takes to decompose. Did you know that disposable diapers take around 450 years to decompose?
Volunteers traveled from across the Philippines to join in the festivities.
Children of all ages performed traditional dances, most of which originated from the Spanish colonial period or from Filipino folklore.