Among all towns in Quezon celebrating the feast of San Isidro Labrador, Pahiyas Festival is undoubtedly the most colorful if not the most popular. It all started as a gift-giving ritual by the natives of Lucban to the Franciscan missionaries who were responsible for bringing Catholicism to Quezon in 1583.
When Fr. Juan de Placencia took over as the town’s first church administrator, he continued the practice of offering the years harvest to the Spanish friars as thanksgiving for a bountiful harvest. The ritual was carried on by the next parish priest, Fr. Diego de Oropesa until it became a tradition for the Lucbanins.
Pahiyas is a harvest festival celebrated each year in honor of San Isidro Labrador, the patron saint of farmers. Similar festival is also being observed in the towns of Candelaria, Tayabas (Mayohan sa Tayabas), Sariaya (Hagisan Festival), Tiaong and Lucena City (Pasayahan sa Lucena). Considered one the Philippines’ biggest harvest festivals, it is deeply rooted in the traditional celebration of thanksgiving for bountiful harvests.
During the Lucban San Isidro Pahiyas Festival, each household tries to outdo each other in terms of creativity. Farmers show off their best produce of fruits and vegetables such as chayote and rice. There are miniature fruits and vegetables strung together in the most original fashion. The most traditional and certainly the most attractive décor comes in the form of kiping which are strung together in all shapes from arangya (chandelier) to huge flowers. When kiping catches the light of the sun it turns into a veritable cascades of color.
Lucban is nestled at the foot of Mt. Banahaw and is about 26 kilometers from Lucena City, the provincial capital of Quezon Province. Bounded on the north by Luisiana, Laguna, on the west by Majayjay, Laguna, on the east by Sampaloc, Quezon and on the south by Tayabas, Quezon.
The town is approximately 160 kilometers from Metro Manila via Lucena City and 133 kilometers from Metro Manila using the Sta. Cruz-Pagsanjan route in Laguna. The average travel time is three and a half hours.
Pahiyas 2009 Schedule of Activities
Schedule of activities courtesy of http://www.pahiyasfestival.com