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Bacolod City, PhilippinesThursday, November 22, 2012

The Neg. Occ.
Garden club story


The story of the Negros Occidental Garden Club began around 50 years ago in the quiet rustic suburb of Tangub, Bacolod City, when avid plant-lover, Milagros Villasor, together with a handful of similarly-inclined friends, formed the Bacolod Garden Club.

The idea caught like wildfire and a huge number of plant lovers in the province soon joined the club. In 1966, with Esperanza Diola at the helm, it became the Negros Occidental Garden Club.

And so, as a fitting highlight of the club’s 50th year anniversary, a fabulous dinner was held Saturday at the Bacolod Pavillon Grand Ballroom. Members and guests came dressed to the nines in their elegant Filipiniana attire. All past presidents of the club marched victoriously down the aisle as their names were called. Wow! What a red carpet moment for the fashionable ladies! PP Gloria Tajanlangit offered a toast to the NOGC’s golden anniversary. Dinner was a veritable feast of mouth-watering delights which was washed down with the excellent red wine.

A video documentary showing the history of the club was eagerly watched by everyone. It brought back bittersweet memories of past happy moments and of friends who have now crossed the ‘Great Divide’. It also made the audience realize what the Garden Club has accomplished all these years.

Negros Occidental first lady Marilyn Marañon, Bacolod City first lady Elsa Leonardia and former Mayor Joy Valdez gave their congratulatory messages to the club. Medallions were presented to the past presidents while Loyalty Awards were given to members of 25 twenty five years or more. A stupendous anniversary cake was rolled down the aisle, eliciting gasps of delight from the crowd. Surprisingly, after the program ended, guests lingered on, reluctant to say goodbye to a most enjoyable NOGC Golden Anniversary Celebration!*

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Fil-Am sisters excelling
in music competitions

Sisters Michaela and Bettina Jaranilla De Guzman, former students of St. Scholastica’s Academy in Bacolod City, are making the Filipino community in California proud with their talent in music.

Michaela, 11, plays the violin and was recently tapped to join the concert of the Filipino-American Symphony Orchestra Youth Ensemble and joined FASO concert in July at Ford Theater in Hollywood.

Her sister Bettina, 9, won third place in the vocal competition of Angel Cup Hollywood International Youth World Championship in July this year.

Being with the FASO enables Michaela, a 7th grader at St. Genevieve Elementary School, Panorama City, California, to be in the company of talented Filipino-American musicians based in Los Angeles.

Robert Shroder, the orchestra’s artistic director and conductor, said the group provides not only an enriching orchestral Filipino music experience to the community but serves as a vehicle for promoting and supporting talented Fil-American musicians and artists.

FASO will have a major Christmas concert on December 16.

Bettina, meanwhile, is a 4th grade student in St. Genevieve Elementary School, and was the only Filipino who joined in the Angel Cup competition, where she sang “Part of Your World” from the Little Mermaid movie, and “A Whole New World” from the movie Aladdin.

The Angel Cup World Championship in USA is organized by the International Youth Culture and Arts Association, with the mission to gather talented young artists in the world to demonstrate their talent.

Bettina won third place at the competition where 70 performers from different countries, ages 8-18 years old, also joined.

The De Guzman sisters are daughters of Dr. Victor and Jessa De Guzman, the latter an alumna of SSA and daughter of Roberto and Belinda Jaranilla of Brgy. Villamonte, Bacolod City.

The elder Roberto was former president of the Parish Pastoral Council of the Immaculate Conception Parish in Villamonte and his son, Robert Jr., is now the parish priest of St. Joseph Church in Pomona, California.

Michaela and Bettina studied at SSA in Bacolod when their father was the medical director of M3 Dialysis, Inc. and their mother was working as guidance counselor at Bacolod Tay Tung High School.*NAB

Fil-Am sisters excelling in music competitions
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