Wednesday, August 31, 2011

Been to: Bluejazz Resort, Samal

Last August 19, 2011, the whole family troop to Davao to attend the Awarding Ceremony of my father for his 20 years service to PAGCOR  (Philippine Amusement & Gaming Corporation), just in time for the Davao's celebration of the famous Kadayawan.

As a gift, our father treated us to a beach get-away. The trip is pretty special since its the first for a very very very long time. So, off we went to Bluejaz Resort and Waterpark. Going to the said resort is a first for all the members of the family so everyone's excited.

views from Bluejaz Resort

Since the resort operates a regular boat service regularly, we decided to take a a 5-minute ferry ride from the Beachside Resort, Maryknoll road, Barangay Vicenta Hizon, leaving our car at the available parking lot. For more details click this link for the directions.

What made your visit to this resort extra speical is the band of drummers that enthusiastically welcome its guest from the Pump Boat! You would really would love to dance along its island beat.

Aside from its infinity pool, water rides and white sand beach, one great offering Bluejaz gives is their exciting Gigantic Water Slides to die for. Do not miss to try and take a huge splash at these famous slides. You may check the resorts website for more info - Bluejaz Resort.

Experience the Gigantic Water Slides

Meanwhile, here is a rundown of the expenses incurred for those who are saving and are planning of visiting the place (per person):

PUMPBoat Fare (Back and Forth)         - Php 30.00
Entrance                                            -        90.00
Rides: Unlimited use Gigantic Slides      -        90.00
           Banana Boat                           -      250.00/person for 15minutes
           *other water sports are for RENT check their website for the fees.
Food  - you can either order from the resort's resto or bring your own food with corkage fees
Cottages - Day Tour: There are available open cottages for free or you can rent a "bahay kubo" type cottage for P250.

I hope this helped you with the budgeting!

Been there TIP! Be among the early birds and you can skip paying CORKAGE FEES for the food you bring!

Friday, August 12, 2011

12th International Youth Day Summit: Highlights and Downlows!

Busy B on IYD 2011

Now on its 12th year, Philippines celebrated the International Youth Day through a Youth and Educators Summit for the Millennium Development Goals spearheaded by no less than the United Nation Youth Association of the Philippines under the banner of the United Nation Association of the Philippines. Held for the very first time out of the Metro Manila setting, the venue for this year is at the City of Love - Iloilo City. Another first for this activity is the fact that it is one of the most attended International Youth Day celebrations in the Philippines so far and that includes us as part of the history.

Here are some events/things that i considered highlights of the summit:

1.  As already mentioned, it is the first IYD gathering that is held outside Manila! A first time for many years.

2. The delegates who came are doubled from the expected number of attendees. From an expected 350 participants the total reached to more than 800!

3. The partner institution Central Philippines University was all out in supporting the event. A big BRAVO for them! Hands down most especially to the CPU President Dr. Teodoro Robles and the rest of the student body who worked hard for a successful IYD summit.

4. This year's Outstanding Youth Leaders Awardee are all inspiring: Mark Roy Macanlalay (Pangasinan) and Jo Jan Paul Penol (Iloilo) for Public and Government Service, Brenfred Romero (Northern Samar) and Kristopher John Rivera (Cagayan de Oro) for Community Service, Neil Sandoval (Manila) and Alein Navares (Cebu) for Education and Danilo Roqayan (Zambales) and Jovic Maurice Lee (Albay) for Environment.
OYLA 2011 with Rep. Arenas of Pangasinan

5. International delegates either came in two or in groups like that from Japan, Bangaladesh, Cambodia, Oman and Indonesia.

6.The National Youth Commission is also a partner for IYD 2011. Represented by Undersecretary Leon Flores III, he introduced NYC to those who have not heard about the office.

7. Photo-op with the CNN Hero of the Year Efren Penaflorida at the Hotel Lobby.

Kuya Efren at the hotel lobby

8. A chance to visit the Central University of the Philippines and admired their huge reception hall! Wishing that one of our universities here in General Santos City would have one like that.

Central Philippine University

9. National Forum on Volunteerism at CPU was graced by Atty. Alex Lacson (12 Little Things you can do for your country) and Mr. Antonio Meloto (Gawad Kalinga) - both are volunteers themselves who are being looked upon by the younger generation as a living inspiration.

Forum on Volunteering with Atty. Alex Lacson & Tito Tony Meloto

10. Mindanao is on the spotlight during the United Nations Youth Association of the Philippines election of officers. The National President and other officers are usually Mindanaoan. Thus Mindanao as the next venue of the IYD Summit is a clearer possibility. General Santos maybe? Why not!

Down Lows:

1. Because of the number of delegates, the organizers had a hard time accommodating everyone fast and efficient! Some even waited until nine o'clock in the evening to get their room assignments, waiting for almost 10 - 12 hours! PATIENCE attack!

2. The organizers were not prepared for the out pour of delegates thus their kits, receipts, meal stub and others are not sufficient.

3. Everyone is a LEADER. Putting intelligent people and leaders of their respective organization in one group will cause mayhem. Nobody wants to be the follower. Everyone wants to decide. The outcome - NOTHING! ZERO! MESS! That are the things that they should improve. Considering that this is the 12th time they conducted the IYD Summit, they should have learned from their previous mistakes.

4. The supposedly highlight ECO-TOUR at Guimaras Island turned out to be a nightmare for everyone. The weather was not suitable for a Guimaras tour that day (moral lesson: check Weather Update before bringing a group of 600 to an island tour). The coordinators were not well coordinated. The tour itself was not well planned (moral lesson: if you plan of bringing your delegates to an island tour or tourist spot tour, try it yourself first so you would know the time duration, the capacity of the place you will be visiting, the orientation you need to conduct and others). Remember that it should be SAFETY over FUN!

5. Because of the disorganized and traumatic Guimaras tour, the delegates missed the talk of Efran Penaflorida at the Central Philippines University. FAIL!

Happy International Youth Day!
Go out and VOLUNTEER towards the realization of the MILLENNIUM DEVELOPMENT GOALS on 2015!

Tuesday, August 9, 2011

Concert Series: Tanduay's First 5 rocked GENSAN!

Here is a quick round-up of the very first visit of Tanduay First 5 to the City of the Generals last July 30, 2011 at the Taps and Kokay (formerly known Anchor Driving Range).

As early as Four o'clock in the afternoon people started to came in groups at the concert grounds, even watching the bands do the sound check.

5:00pm - crowd inside the venue grew in significant numbers. People who came in during this time got a near and clear view of the stage

6:00pm - A traffic of people seems to be a little bit manageable. People lining up are still relaxed.

7:00pm - Crowd starts to fill the streets causing heavy traffic to the passersby. Good thing that the organizers thought of this kind of problem in advance and hired people to manage the traffic problem just in case. The singled line entrance for male audience turned into five lines while for the girls just two. Thus proving my theory that there are still more men who loves the noise a rock band brings.

8:00pm - The first band to perform was the young and vibrant CHICOSCI. I was still lining-up at the female entrance when they started there first song for the night.

"Ang galing niyo Gensan" - Miggy Chavez

Originally called Chico Science, the group won an inter school Battle of the Bands representing Ateneo de Manila University that led them to a slow rise stardom. As they hurdled there way to the rock scene success, Miguel "Miggy" Chavez, Miguel "Mong" Alcaraz, Carlos "Calde" Calderon, Jan Kevin Santos and Joel Salvador together with Sonny Baquisal and long-time friend Eugene "Yug" Esquivias - the group reinvented themselves seeking help from the able rock scene professionals like that of Raymond Marasigan thus shreiking girls know them as CHICOSCI! 

The group was pretty generous with there performance and gained a number of screamers - hands down to Miggy and Mong! It was a good way of starting a rock concert - stretching and flexing everyone's muscle for the next bands to come. It was the first time of the group to perform for the GENERALS and they left a mark of AWESOMENESS which surely adds to their fan based in General Santos City.

9:30pm - Then comes SANDWICH on stage! Another group of CONYO band that made the crowd a bit crazy! Not a first timer, T5 tour in gensan for the band is there 3rd in General Santos City. I remembered the group's first time in the city when they front-acted for the then popular ALAMID, when only a few of the audience appreciate the genre of the band. But gone are those days when people does not know the lines of Sandwich's popular singles. Today, some of their hits such as SUGOD can instigate a MOSH during live performances. 

"When you go home, form a band" - Raymond Marasigan
Sandwich is a Filipino rock band that was formed in 1995 by Raimund Marasigan and Diego Castillo for the purpose of fulfilling their mutual desire to work together. Castillo recruited former band mates from The Aga Muhlach Experience Mike Dizon (of The Teeth) to play drums and Myrene Academia (of Imago) to handle bass duties. Sandwich was searching for a vocalist when music video director Marie Jamora recommended her friend Marc Abaya. A few years earlier, Marasigan was a judge at a contest where Marc Abaya jammed to a Beastie Boys song with his high-school band, Shirley Beans. Abaya then joined Sandwich, but was later replaced by Mong Alcaraz of the band Chicosci.

Favorite part of Sandwich performance: their MASH-UP of Masilungan and Alapaap!  

10 something - Iya Villana joined the local DJs in introducing the next group. And the crowd went WILD! as Chito Miranda of Parokya ni Edgar started to sing their first song! As expected, people sing along with the group as they performed some current and not so old singles.

Naming themselves Comic Relief, the band originally consisted of three vocalists – Chito Miranda, Jeric Estaco, Vinci Montaner, and two guitarists, Miko Yap and Gab Chee Kee. They constantly played through after-school jam session, before performing an opening number for an Eraserheads concert. This break prompted the band to add a drummer and a bassist – Dindin Moreno and Buwi Meneses respectively. The same performance also marked the change of the band's name to Parokya ni Edgar.[2] After high school, Miko and Jeric left the band to pursue other interests. As a replacement, the remaining band members invited to their fold, guitarist Darius Semaña (lead guitar). The name Parokya Ni Edgar came from a joke answer Jeric Estaco gave during Philippine History class, when the teacher asked him where Jose Rizal's fictional hero, Crisostomo Ibarra (in the novel Noli Me Tangere), was educated.

Important: it was GAB CHEE KEE's birthday that night! And a sea of people at the venue celebrated it with him!

11 and beyond: The band that most of the tambays waited for - KAMIKAZEE! The naturally comic Jay went up on stage and started their hilarious performance. Only proving that the group is here to stay and their followers are growing in numbers.

Kamikazee is a Filipino rock band formed in 2000. The band is composed of Jay Contreras, Jomal Linao, Led Tuyay, Puto Astete and Bords Burdeos.The band is composed of five members who met in college at the College of Fine Arts of the University of the Philippines, Diliman. Kamikazee's early gigs were mostly on campus events in UP Diliman like the annual UP Fair. Before they were signed in a major label, they went by the name "Kamikazee Cornflakes" (eventually shortened to its current state as "Kamikazee" which they think is easier to remember). Their early shows included renditions of the songs "Mmm Sarap", "Tsinelas", a cover of Ariel Rivera's "Sana Kahit Wolfgang is a Filipino heavy metalhard rock and grunge band formed around 1992 in ManilaPhilippines. Wolfgang is notable for being the only Filipino rock band to release albums in Japan and the United States and for realizing Platinum record sales in their home country.[1] The quartet went on hiatus in 2002, but reunited in 2007.Minsan", and Britney SpearsLucky. They were known for using expletives, suggestive movements, and references to genitalia in their UP Diliman performances.

Highlight: Jay called up three ladies to join the group on stage, let them take a shot of the sponsor drink then ask them which band did they came for. Two girls who answered Parokya ni Edgar got a kiss on the cheek from Chito Miranda while the sole lady who answered Kamikazee got a controversial kiss from a wet Jay! 
Those are surely for the records!

Almost 1 in the morning: The comebacking Wolfgang proved that they are never too old to play their kind of music. It was a nostalgic feeling for the fans of the group upon hearing their favorite songs from them. You can really identify the fanatics from the posers. 

Wolfgang is a Filipino heavy metalhard rock and grunge band formed around 1992 in ManilaPhilippines. Wolfgang is notable for being the only Filipino rock band to release albums in Japan and the United States and for realizing Platinum record sales in their home country.[1] The quartet went on hiatus in 2002, but reunited in 2007. After the band broke up in 2002, bassist Mon Legaspi took over bass guitar duties from Carlos Balcells of The Dawn. Legaspi stayed with The Dawn from 2002 until 2004. Wolf Gemora, for his part, was part of thesouthern California-based rock quartet, called Lokomotiv, while Basti Artadi became the vocalist for a San Francisco-based group called Kitaan; he later sang for Lokomotiv, actually cutting the band's debut album,Rock N' Roll Death Toll. He left Lokomotiv shortly thereafter, and was replaced by Ryan Hudson. Artadi later worked as a coordinator for the corporate operations department of Gap in San Francisco.[4] Manuel Legarda formed the band DRT with former Gnash vocalist Jay Ortega, Blue Rats' drummer Miguel Ortigas and bassist Paolo Pacia. Manuel Legarda has since left DRT, and has been replaced by Daniel Crilosogo of the band DC Aftershock. Manuel is now in the process of mixing the next Wolfgang album. Wolf Gemora is presently in the band, 3 Headed Dog with ex-Razorback guitarist David Aguirre and Lokomotiv bassist Danny Gonzalez. They are based in southern California and they toured the Philippines in January 2011.

Highlights: Basti Artadi the vocalists is already wasted as he came on stage even forgetting some of the lyrics of "Anino"!  He also stopped their performace just to remind the audience to behave well and stop fighting or whatever the commotion on the ground is.

The concert was such a big treat for General Santos City and we proved that we are so ready for these kinds of sponsored events. We just hope that they will come back on the next years!

Thanks Tanduay for bringing T5 the power of 5 to Gensan!