The Sinulog Festival is a lively and grand festival in the Philippines, celebrated annually on the third Sunday of January in Cebu City. It pays tribute to the Santo Nino, also known as the child of Jesus. Although Jesus is not considered a saint but God in Catholicism, Santo Nino was previously regarded as the patron saint of Cebu province. The festival features a dance ritual that honors both the ancient pagan beliefs of Filipinos and their embrace of Christianity.
The Festival showcases vibrant displays of pompm and pageantry, with participants donned in colorful costumes, dancing to the beat of drums, trumpets, and native gongs. The streets are lined with vendors and pedestrians eager to witness the street dancing. Smaller versions of the festival are held in different parts of the province to honor the Santo Nino. Additionally, a youth performance called Sinulog of Kabataan takes place a week before the Grand Parade, performed by the young people of Cebu.
Besides the vibrant and lively dancing, Sinulog also includes the SME trade fair, which showcases high-quality products from Cebu that attract people from all over the world. Over time, the cultural event has become more commercialized and now serves as a tourist attraction rather than solely being a traditional street-dancing event for locals. Sinulog now also represents featuring contingents from different regions in the country. The Sinulog Contest has traditionally taken place in Cebu City Sports Complex, the venue for many significant provincial events in Cebu.