LIVE BLOG: Scenes from the UP Lantern Parade 2015

Floats, lights, and possibly some really cute dogs

( Every holiday season, the University of the Philippines Diliman lights up its streets with colorful floats and lanterns, fills up the air with wonderful music, and amazes the crowd with entertaining performances. This is to signal the start of the holiday break for the whole UP community and to showcase the talents and causes of the different colleges, organizations, and students on campus.


Welcome to #LanternParade2015.


Photos by Paul Domalaon



Crowds gather in front of Quezon Hall, where the Oblation statue stands in welcome. This year's Lantern Parade theme is Dingas: Adhikaing Diliman, Adhikaing Bayan. Dingas means flame, which is what the community hopes this event will be to students and visitors alike.


Different advocacies are a cause of celebration inside UP. Students and organizations spend their own funds, some even amounting to almost P20,000, for a few hours of display inside the campus. As the Lantern Parade begins officially, the tradition of embracing diversity continues.




Spotted: Diliman doggies! For the first time in the history of the parade, dogs joined the march around the UP academic oval. The organizing committee, Friends of Campus Animals UP, hopes that this will help in their call to lift the ban on pets inside the campus.



Food stalls line the University Avenue as visitors excitedly await the start of the parade.



The float by the College of Home Economics is a vinta, symbolizing the resiliency of families amid storms and rough waves. Featured on their float is Lumad-inspired design, which they said showed their solidarity in the struggles of indigenous peoples around the country.




Alumni organization SAMASA joined the lantern parade for the first time this year to ask people to not let their memories of the Martial Law fade from memory. Called "Never Forget" is the float designed by award-winning sculptor Toym Imao, who also designed the Oblation's holiday theme.



Spotted: Local superhero Zorro guards the dogs and the floats that will join the parade.



The UP Pep Squad riles up the crowd with cheers that the people can't help but join in: M-A-R-O-O-N-S! Fighting Maroons!


Earlier at the College of Fine Arts (CFA), students were scrambling to finish their floats.


Their theme for this year is classic Filipino films, and the students get to make their own interpretations of the movies.



Nicolo Cortez, a visual communication student, said that since the college was no longer part of the university-wide competition for the best float, CFA hosts its own competition for their students. Only first year and second year students join the contest.



One of the floats is of the film Panday, one of Fernando Poe Jr.'s most famous movies. Nicolo and his group, on the other hand, made a political statement and a modern reinterpretation of Juan Tamad Goes to Congress.



A float of Pedro Penduko, the folk superhero of comic book, movie and television fame.



Walang Himala: A float depicting Nora Aunor's iconic scene in the Ishmael Bernal 1982 filmHimala.




Asiong Salonga looms large and menacing with his trademark tobacco.




A perya-inspired float which opens and closes, revealing Dyesebel in her mermaid form.




Back-to-back giant Dolphy heads adorn this float of Facifica Falayfay.


After sunset, the lanterns finally light up.



The float by the School of Urban and Regional Planning has a carabao with a huge sun standing behind it. This represents their call for transparency, they said, and the promise of a brighter future once this is achieved.



The College of Social Sciences and Philosophy (CSSP), on the other hand, opted for a solar system model because what could represent Dingas more than the sun? The planets stand for the different courses inside the college.




The UP Open University originally had a bigger float, but rains, they said, devastated their initial work. Left with nothing more than handheld clouds that represented the wireless learning brought by the Internet, they still chose to join the parade. "At least we have something to show," they stressed.




A sight in green, the UP Babaylan strutted down the academic oval, bringing with them their advocacy for gender equality. They bring the memory of Jennifer Laude with them and said they chose green because of its representation of healing.




Inside the campus, spending weeks on a lantern that will only be seen for a few hours is worth the stress. Because small flames start big fires, and with the kind of vision the lanterns have, it's sure their Dingas will be seen for a long, long time.


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