Ilocos Norte will celebrate the 98th birth anniversary of the late President Ferdinand Edralin Marcos, known among the Ilocanos as Apo Lakay with youth group-centered activities beginning Sept. 9 to honor its favorite son.

The widow, former First Lady now Congresswoman Imelda Romualdez Marcos (2nd district, Ilocos Norte), children Senator Ferdinand “Bongbong” Marcos Jr., Ilocos Norte Governor Imee Marcos and Irene Marcos-Araneta are expected to lead the celebration.

Da Real Makoy Literary and Musical Competition will open the celebration, a fitting tribute to President Marcos, who was an accomplished orator, debater and writer. Contested activities include Retro Quartet, Imelda and Makoy Singing Competition, Quiz Bee, Digital Poster Making, Pinoy Ballroom and Kalesa Art.

This year’s celebration will be highlighted by a musical play dubbed as ‘RAKENROL’, a story of love and portrayal of the strength and perseverance of the Ilocanos.

“In past years, Da Real Makoy Concert had drawn thousands of Ilocano revelers. This time, the musical play will give a new life to the province-wide celebration of Marcos Fiesta,” said Elaine Lubguban, Media Incentives Desk Officer of the Provincial Government of Ilocos Norte .

The RAKENROL musical is free admission and will premiere during FEM’s birthday on Sept. 11 at 7:00 PM at Mariano Marcos State University’s Teatro Ilocandia in Batac City.

Meanwhile, a new statue of Apo Lakay will be unveiled in Sarrat town, his birthplace, on Sept. 12.

“With the recent typhoon Ineng that hit Ilocos Norte, a relief caravan will be an integral part of the celebration. The Marcos’ family will go around the different towns struck by the typhoon to conduct a relief operation on Sept. 12,” said Ian Racquel, provincial tourism officer.

Now on its fourth year, the Marcos Fiesta has been regarded as one of the biggest festivities in the province.
The event drew more than 15,000 Ilocanos and Marcos loyalists all over the country last year.

“As we honor the legacy of President Marcos—nationalism, genuine commitment to duties and of course to rigorous planning and development—we prove that Ilocanos are indeed patriotic, religious and compassionate,” said Governor Marcos during last year’s celebration.

Through the active participation of the Sirib Youth Office, the celebration is also expected to draw the largest crowd of young Ilocanos since most of the event’s activities are centered on them.

The most anticipated Ferdinand Edralin Marcos (FEM) Debate Cup comes back on September 14 showcasing the speech and debate talents of the Ilocano youth.

The debate cup aims to empower young Ilocanos to share their ideas on relevant issues in the province.
In line with the celebration, a Marcos Fiesta Job Fair will be conducted by the Public Employment Service Office (PESO) on September 9, from 8:00 AM to 5:00 PM at Ilocos Norte Centennial Arena.(John Michael Mugas, PGIN-CMO)