Crowd-free Dinagyang, Ati-Atihan to push through in 2021

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Iloilo City’s Dinagyang and Kalibo, Aklan’s Ati-Atihan are pushing through as scheduled in January 2021, but without the mammoth crowds.

But, the annual celebrations will be celebrated in a toned down manner due to coronavirus disease pandemic.

Mayor Jerry Treñas instructed the Iloilo Festivals Foundation, Inc. to manage next year’s edition of Dinagyang Festival, known for its participants’ impressive choreography and bright-colored costumes. (

Dinagyang is the Hiligaynon word for revelry or merrymaking. The festival is the city’s version of the Ati-Atihan celebrations widely observed not only in Panay Island but also in other parts of the country.

Meanwhile, the Diocese of Kalibo is also pushing through with the annual Ati-Atihan Festival.

Father Jose Tudd Belandres, parish priest at St. John the Baptist Cathedral in Kalibo, said the diocese has submitted recommendations on how to manage the festival despite the pandemic.

“What we are planning to do now is to present these plans with the local government. We will still push through with our devotion to the Santo Niño whatever it takes,” the priest added.

The Ati-Atihan Festival, a celebration traditionally held every third Sunday of January, is highlighted by dances and merrymaking in honor of the Santo Niño.