San Francisco Bay Area gets set for big PH Independence Day bash | Global News

San Francisco Bay Area gets set for big PH Independence Day bash

/ 12:28 AM June 06, 2015

Last year’s KalayaanSF concert and fiesta at San Francisco’s Union Square. CONTRIBUTED PHOTOS

SAN FRANCISCO — Filipino American community leaders, in partnership with the Philippine Consulate General of San Francisco, once again will be offering a series of events this month – the biggest to date – to commemorate the 117th Anniversary of the Declaration of Philippine Independence.

Commemoration organizer, KalayaanSF, has grown each year in size and number of participants.  Its chair, Conrad ‘Radi’ Calalang, said, “It’s time to bring the Filipino community out from the shadows. As the largest Asian American community in California, Filipinos are still very much underrepresented politically and culturally.  We need a louder voice, and KalayaanSF helps focus a bright, positive spotlight on the community.”


Calalang added, “There’s no better time to create momentum, partly by stoking pride and patriotism within the community, and also by proudly showcasing the unique talents and contributions of Filipino Americans.”

Consul General Henry S. Bensurto Jr., explained in agreement, “Empowerment cannot come from a vacuum, and it cannot be without direction. To begin with, you must start by recognizing who you are.”


Bensurto added, “These activities in June help serve the purpose of establishing connectivity, which is to ensure that people are able to construct a bridge to link their first generations all the way to present and future generations.”

Philippine Independence Day Gala

A formal, black-tie event will be held on Friday, June 12 at San Francisco City Hall, to bring together city and state government officials, the international diplomatic community and a cross-section of guests from business, arts, politics, education and community service.


Some of last year’s Kalayaan Heroes awardees.

KalayaanSF Festival & Concert

Drawing thousands of revelers each year, KalayaanSF’s main event will once again be held in the grounds of the iconic Union Square on Saturday, June 27 from 12 noon to 8 p.m..

Free to the public, this year’s festival will again feature very popular and energetic street performances for which past events have been known.

Spread throughout all corners of Union Square, colorful dance troupes, Filipino-Eskrima martial artists, painters, singing groups and musicians will be performing simultaneously throughout the day.


The festival grounds will be home to various exhibitors, as well as food and craft vendors offering Filipino themed cuisine and wares to the public.

Capping the KalayaanSF Festival will be a free, full-length concert produced by ABS-CBN/TFC (The Filipino Channel), to be held in the main stage of Union Square.

Headlining the concert will be international star and “American Idol” top-two finalist, Jessica Sanchez, and multitalented “Super Selfie King” Gab Valenciano.

For more information on KalayaanSF events in June, or for inquiries on sponsorship, volunteer and vendor opportunities, visit,, or email [email protected]

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TAGS: 117th Anniversary of the Declaration of Philippine Independence, American Idol, Conrad 'Radi' Calalang, Consul-General Henry S. Bensurto Jr, Gab Valenciano, Jessica Sanchez, KalayaanSF, KalayaanSF Festival & Concert, Philippine Independence Day celebration San Francisco, Philippine Independence Day Gala San Francisco, San Francisco City Hall
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