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La Jolla celebrates annual Pista sa Nayon

Every month of May, La Jolla Luxury Beach Resort celebrates Pista sa Nayon to embrace and share Filipino culture.

The Santacruzan, or “Holy Cross” in Spanish, is a historical religious procession which resembles the search for Queen Helena — mother of the first Christian Emperor, Constantine the Great — to the cross where Jesus died. This Filipino tradition is usually held at the end of May.

A 2nd Santacruzan was held on May 27, 2023, as the resort’s expression of cultural pride and tradition among Filipinos. 

The stunning Reyna Elenas carried their   respective representations while little girls dressed in white with angel wings, went around the town proper as a reminder of the religious origin.

At the same time, they flaunted how stylishly fashionable their gowns were, designed by RSS House of Couture headed by Delio Rodel Salandanan Samsom.

During the parade, locals gathered in the streets to watch the “mag-aalay” perform cultural dances with their colorful ensembles.

Due to the love of the Filipinos for innovation and their penchant for creativity, the current adaptation of this religious practice has considered a recently crowned beauty queen titlist as the Reyna Elena — Patricia Candelaria, who was crowned as Binibining Bagac last 2019.

Below is the list of Reyna Elenas and their religious meanings:
Reyna Luna carrying a moon, the footstool of Mary as the Woman of the Apocalypse; Reyna del Santisimo Rosario carrying a rosary – the symbol of Devotion to Mary; Reyna Candelaria, carrying along a lit candle symbolizing the Purification of Mary; Reyna ng Pananampalataya carrying across that embodies our faith; Reyna ng Pag-asa carrying an anchor representing salvation, steadfast belief, and hope and faith in Christ; Reyna ng Pag-ibig carrying a heart which is the center or core of our being, from which prayer and moral actions originate; Kaban ng Tipan carrying the Ten (10) Commandments; Pintong Langit carrying the Heaven’s Door which shows the true blessing is in God’s grace to be felt in His kingdom; Talang Maliwanag carrying a bright star embodying the light of hope of salvation in the midst of darkness; Magpagaling ng may Sakit, carrying a crutch that relieves pain; Luklukan ng Karunungan carrying a bible and is the Seat of Wisdom; Inang Diyos, carrying Santo Niño, animage of the Christ child; Inani Kristo, carrying the Latin acronym for Jesus Hominum Salvator, chosen to give birth to Jesus; Inang Santa Iglesia, carrying the Holy Church; Inang Mabuting Kahatulan, carrying a scale for good judgment; Reyna ng Kapayapaan, carrying a dove symbolizing peace, hope and freedom; Reyna ng mga Pamilya, carring the Holy Family; Reyna Elena, carrying the cross as a sign that she saw the cross that saved humanity. She is accompanied by a boy called “Constantino” that represents Emperor Constantine.

Over the years, the unrestrained display of these biblical characters and symbolic  figures participating in the procession made the attributes to the Blessed Virgin even more significant.

Additionally, on May 28, 2023, the 2nd La Jolla Fiesta was also celebrated to reminisce classic the Palarong Pinoy. A mix of La Jolla employees and resort guests participated. Some of the carnival games were color game, number game, ring toss, bucket toss, balloon dart and color wheel.

Moreso, traditional games were also readily available by the beach area such as agawan panyo, sack race, agawan buko, kadang-kadang, limbo, and palosebo. Interestingly, the Schools Division Office of Caloocan City generously pledged a monetary prize that made the palo sebo an exciting game for the resort’s Ground Maintenance group.

According to La Jolla, the yearly resort event definitely embraces and shares Filipino culture, portraying the country’s religious belief and keeping adults young at heart at the same time.