Happy wedding anniversary to Dr. Raul and Mayet Sala.


“There are only three types of people: those who make things happen, those who watch things happen, and those who say, What happened?” — Ann Landers


DON’T look now, but everybody who’s anybody of Banga, Aklan heritage are all agog for the coming “Thrilla Ko Banga” grand reunion and extravaganza on April 26, 2011.

As early as now, the anticipation and excitement of the coming event are felt among Bangahons living globally, most especially in the USA and Canada.

They’ll be jetting from all over in time for the Holy Week to May 1 which is the town fiesta.

Some with houses and properties there and already retired opted to stay much longer.

Thrilla Ko Banga was incepted by Anthony R. Macahilig and, along with co-coordinators, Reuben I. Ibarreta and AgapitoPeteR. Teofilo organized the first reunion celebrated in Las Vegas in July 2002.

It started with an informal get-together and registration on Thursday, July 26, a formal gala the next evening at the Sahara Hotel, and thanksgiving mass and picnic-style gathering on Saturday the 28th in a gym of a parochial school.

That was a barrel-full of fun! Now, this coming April 26 festivity is undoubtedly a sure-fire success.

With the three movers and shakers (Anthony, Reuben and Pete) based in New York and New Jersey in coordination with their fraternity brods, “The Jaywalkers Limited,” and its sister organization, “The Hatcheteers” both of Banga, Aklan, it’ll be a sensational and smashing event.

Thanks in part to Nang Mila Soncuya Raz who lives in San Francisco and who insisted on Anthony to organize this Grand Reunion to enable to re-connect Bangahons in a joyous atmosphere as opposed to seeing each other in a time of bereavement.

The Thrilla’s inception as a social affair was by, of, and for the Bangahons worldwide.

It is not an organization and therefore has no membership requirements, no general meetings, no officers and no organizational hierarchy.

Each and every Bangahon is a party to Thrilla Ko Banga on equal footing, including those who are married to a Bangahon and anyone who has roots there even if one has never lived in Banga.

Tellingly, this town in Aklan has a significant number of residents who migrated to the U.S., Canada and elsewhere since the 1960s or even earlier.

They are mostly in the medical field, engineering, accounting, teaching and other professions and mostly products of a superior high school in town which is now the government-run Aklan State University.

The high-school grads continued on to pursue their college degrees in Manila and/or other cities before emigrating abroad.

Bangahons are truly religious people, and they put priority of raising funds to donate for the upkeep of their parish St. Joseph Church.

The structural element holding the church roofing is almost totally rotten, being made of wood installed 70 years ago, and a victim of several typhoons that besieged the province.

The roof now poses a grave danger of caving in, especially during times of strong winds and heavy rains.

The net proceeds of the first Thrilla in Las Vegas was donated to the church, and that was not much really.

The coordinators hope to make more this time to give to the church, taking into consideration the expenses it entails for each one to fly home.

Recession, you know.

At any rate, with prayers to St. Joseph, we hope to get donations from friends and charity-minded people to help save our crumbling church located near the town plaza.

You may send donations payable to its pastor, Msgr. Jose Parohinog, and mail it to Thrilla Ko Banga, 14 Fletcher Place, Madison NJ 07940.

Or, if you wish, you can hand it to me payable to the above which I’ll turn over to the coordinator or the Parish Council after proper documentation.

The Parish Council of Banga, Aklan comprising of five upstanding and duly voted parishioners is unable to open a bank account in time to be allowed to receive check donations in U.S. dollars due to astringent banking requirement in the Philippines.

Making donations made payable to its pastor happens to be the most practical way of facilitating their receipt.

The Parish Council itself, and not the pastor nor the coordinators of Thrilla, will acknowledge your donation and proudly recognize you as an adopted altruistic Bangahon.

So, come on down and visit our town voted “Banga the Beautiful” during the beautification program of the government some years back.

Hey, the famous Boracay is in Aklan, so there you are, honeypies!


Ending with a quote:

“Happiness always looks small if you hold it in your hands. But when you learn to share it, you will realize how big and precious it is."

At the Philippine Booth during the recent Beneath the Sea Dive Show at the Meadowlands Expo Center in New Jersey. From left, Lynn Funkhouser, one of the founding members of the Women Divers Hall of Fame (WDHOF), who has been diving in the Philippines for two months every year for the last 35 years; Kathy Rothschild, WDHOF treasurer; Bonnie Toth, WDHOF president; and Emma Ruth Yulo, Philippine Tourism director.

Greetings on their respective birthdays to (from left) Minnie Acaling Azarcon, Janet Acaling Rigodon and Irene Acaling Eduque.

Birthday blessings to Myrna Acaling Retino.

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