Jun 19, 2024

December 16, 2023 — The Philippine Consulate General in Vancouver holds  its 4th annual Maligayang Pasko Vancouver” (MPV)   on December 16  at the  St. Patrick’s  Parish Recreation Center  (2881 Main Street)  from 10 AM to 4 PM.  It features a Christmas market with 50 food and non-food vendors, Christmas caroling, pabitin, parol-making, Pinoy Story Time and a photo booth. 

A favorite of MPV goers are the food vendors  which this year include many new as well as old eateries:  Khaykery,  Shameless buns, Boodle Filipino Fiesta, Manila Kitchen, Kasama, Mr. Siopao, Goldilocks, Hapag, Pampanga Cuisine, Taho,  and Plato Filipino.  They display and sell typical Filipino foods and delicacies for sampling or for taking home. They also have sweets like turon, polvoron and pastillas de leche and ube,   Filipino cakes like sans rival, bibingka, and biko, and breads like pan de sal, pan de leche,  and ensaymada.   


MPV2023 Poster


The event is in support of the rapidly expanding Fil-Canadian businesses in the Greater Vancouver area and to bring them to the attention of Filipinos and Canadians alike. Among non-food vendors are Philippine Airlines, SMDC, Bammstella, Liberum Made,  Hablon,  Alala, and  Llink and Chain Jewelry. 

The day-long event shows how Filipinos celebrate Christmas in the Philippines in order to share Filipino Christmas culture and traditions with second generation Filipino Canadians who were born in Canada,  and with the Canadian community in general.  It includes a demonstration of how to make a parol,  the  colorful Christmas paper lantern usually  shaped like a star. There will also be a  Pinoy Story Telling Time and pabitin, the Filipino version of piñata, a game where kids have to  jump to get hanging treats and toys as prizes. 

The day ends with a Filipino community Mass at 4:30 at St. Patrick’s church, across the Recreation Center.  December 16 is the start of Simbang Gabi in the Philippines, a novena of early morning Masses usually at the crack of dawn to allow farmers and fisher folks to attend.  It culminates on Christmas  eve. This practice has been adopted by some parishes in Vancouver with many Filipino parishioners but held in the evening instead of daybreak. 

The Maligayang Pasko Vancouver was first launched in 2019 under ConGen Maria Andrelita Austria who moved to Ottawa early this year as the Philippine Ambassador to Canada. Current Consul General Arlene T. Magno, a caeer diplomat, is pleased to continue this yearly Philippine Christmas Market in Vancouver as the PCG’s Christmas flagship event, highly anticipated by the Filipino community in Vancouver. 

Editor of Canadian Filipino Net
Eleanor R. Laquian has written four best-selling books, and co-authored four others with husband Prod Laquian. She has served in various capacities at the University of British Columbia’s Institute of Asian Research as manager of administration and programs; editor and chair, publications committee; and primary researcher of the Asian Immigration to Canada project. She has a degree in journalism from Maryknoll College in the Philippines, and a master’s degree in public administration from the University of the Philippines. She did postgraduate studies at the School of Public Communications,  Boston University in the U.S.

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