Aswang Festival is a cultural celebration in Roxas City, Capiz intended to bust the myth about the province being a domain of aswang by turning the monster into Capiz's premier attraction. This annual festivity runs towards the end of October, in time for the yearly observation of All Saints' Day or undas in the Philippines. It has been commonly known as the local version of American Halloween celebrations.
Parade of "Mythical Creatures"
During this time, people of all ages await the parade of participating individuals wearing costumes of the most horrifying mythical creatures like tikbalang, wak-wak, and kapre. Going simultaneously with this event is a trade fair featuring famous Capiznon seafood products and other local delicacies.
Removing the Stigma
In 2004, the first-ever Aswang Festival received tremendous negative feedback from the local church, which strongly disapproves of the belief in such mythical creatures. But the organizers defended the concept of the festivity. According to them, the festival is aimed at changing the negative impression of Capiz as the home of aswang by recognizing it only as a myth and hopefully removing the stigma attached to the word. It intends to showcase Capiz as one of the country's top tourist destinations with its fine beaches and scenic landscapes. Also, through the trade exhibits, entrepreneurs of small businesses can promote local products to help uplift the economy of the province.
- Aswang Festival at You Tube
- “Aswang Festival”. WOW Philippines. http://www.wowphilippines.ca/index.php?page=oct&PHPSESSID=07b73351369169315e52061a354b0a45 (accessed on October 22, 2007)
- “All systems go for 'aswang' festival of Roxas City”. Newsflash. http://www.newsflash.org/2004/02/ht/ht004768.htm (accessed on October 22, 2007)
- Unexplained-Mysteries.com. http://www.unexplained-mysteries.com/forum/index.php?showtopic=81909 (accessed on October 22, 2007)
- “UCAN: Philippine Catholic Church leaders stand against witch fest”. Catholic.org. http://www.catholic.org/international/international_story.php?id=21779 (accessed on October 22, 2007)