In Greenhills, San Juan City, Metro Manila, the Christmas lighting ceremony is a much-awaited annual tradition that officially kicks off Christmas at the Promenade and Theater Mall. Enlivened by the presence of stars and entertainment personalities, the tradition began in 2008, the 20th year of the Music Museum.
For several years, the late German “Kuya Germs” Moreno invited stars like Gloria Romero to join him in providing Christmas cheer and dazzle at the ceremony. Young stars like Barbie Forteza, Bea Binene, Jake Vargas, Hero Angeles, and Ken Chan joined Kuya Germs in spreading Christmas cheer to shoppers and mall goers at the Promenade.
Every year, the celebrities assemble at the site of the Christmas Switch, put their hands together and press the switch. Immediately, the bright lights of Christmas start to shine all over the place as if the stars of the entertainment world lend their sparkle to the Holiday look.
This year, Forteza, Chan, Jak Roberto, Mark Manicad and John Nite carried on the tradition begun by Kuya Germs. Forteza first became part of the Greenhills tradition when she was just 13 years old and Chan and Roberto were her co-stars in the GMA hit television show “Meant to Be.”
“I’m so happy to be doing this again,” Forteza said. “I love the symbolism of the lights going on at the same time to start the Christmas festivities here.”
At the flick of the switch, the Christmas lights inside and outside the mall and on the Christmas tree came alive in a blaze of big and little lights. It was punctuated by transparent parols, the traditional Filipino symbols of Christmas, deftly put together by resident artist Francis Dano-og.
The Christmas Lighting ceremony was led by Music Museum Group President Precy M. Florentino and other MMG officials including Rosalinda Mendoza and Paolo Mendoza. The event touched off engaging Christmas activities at the mall highlighted by a Christmas Bazaar at the Missouri area that will go on until Dec. 31.
“We want to show that the Christmas spirit is forever alive in us,” Florentino said. She recalled how Christmas lights are a traditional part of the Christmas celebration and how parols lit the way for country folk on their way to Simbang Gabi, a devotional series of masses practiced by Roman Catholics and Aglipayans in the Philippines every Dec. 16–24 .
“We want these Christmas lights to provide hope and cheer to our surroundings,” Florentino explained. She added that Filipino Christmases are “always bright.”
The dining, shopping and entertainment enclave is best known for its popular performance venues, the Music Museum and Teatrino, its state of the art Greenhills Cinemas that pioneered the Dolby Atmos Sound Technology, and its lively mix of shops and restaurants.
For more information about activities, movies, dining places, shops, stores and more at the Promenade and Theater Mall, go to www.musicmuseum.com.ph. Follow us on social media:
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