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Monday, October 15, 2012


The City of Pagadian is located in Mindanao, Philippines. It is the capital of the province of Zamboanga del Sur and the regional center of Zamboanga Peninsula.

With its beginnings as a stop-over for traders who ply the road between the old Spanish fort-town of Zamboanga on the southwestern tip of the Zamboanga Peninsula and other bigger towns to the north of the old Zamboanga Province and apart from its sheltered bay and good fishing grounds, it was not a place where anyone imagined that a city would be founded on it as it is situated on steeply rolling terrain. In the course of its local history, waves of different kinds of people came to stay and eventually called among themselves "Pagadianons."

The iconic symbol of Pagadian is its uniquely designed tricycle built to adopt to the city's hilly terrain. It is the only place in the Philippines with a public transport inclined at about 25-40° angle.
The people of Pagadian (Pagadianons) are classified into three main groups which is based primarily on faith and heritage: (a) The Subanens (or any other indigenous tribe/s who had been living in the area before the advent of Islam in Mindanao), (b) the Muslim (Bangsamoro) settlers who came from other parts of Mindanao and other places such as Sabah and Indonesia, and (c) the Christian settlers who generally came from the Visayas and Luzon.
Majority of Pagadianons speak the Cebuano language (part of the Bisaya family of languages). The national language, Filipino (Tagalog) is widely understood and is the native tongue of a small percentage of the population. Iranun, Maguindanao, Maranao, Tausug, and Samal dialects are used by the Muslim community. The Subanen dialect is exclusively used by the Subanen people, the original inhabitants of the area. Remaining percentage of the population are classified as Ilonggo, Zamboangueño and Ilocano speakers. As in the case with the rest of the Philippines, English is understood by almost everyone and is used as the primary language for business.
The fiesta is celebrated every January showcasing the Pasalamat Festival, fluvial parade (regatta), trade exhibits, the Mutya ng Pagadian beauty pageant, carnival shows and a civic military parade. On every 21 June, the Araw ng Pagadian is celebrated in commemoration of its founding as a chartered city; as Capital of Zamboanga del Sur, the city hosts the annual provincial celebration in September with agro-trade exhibits, a civic-military parade, cultural presentations and sports competitions.
The Megayon Festival is a week-long celebration that coincides with the Zamboanga del Sur anniversary in September. It honors the tri-people settlers: the Subanens, BangsaMoro Muslims andChristians. "Megayon" is a Subanen word which means "Unity and Solidarity". The festival, officially established on August 3, 2006 (Provincial Ordinance No. 016-2006), is a showcase of three distinctly different cultural heritage in songs, dances, rituals of peace, foods and crafts, to foster unity and understanding among the three cultures. Organized environment-related activities, peace and development forum, and indigenous sports competitions are also being held.
Pagadian City also officially celebrates the Chinese New Year. This was initiated by Mayor Samuel S. Co who assumed office in 2004. It honors the local Chinese community which had contributed significantly to the local economy.


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