BLD Christmas party
B.L.D. CHRISTMAS PARTY. The Bukas Loob sa Diyos (BLD) covenant community held its Christmas party in the evening of last Dec. 8 at the Philippine American Cultural Center of Michigan (PACCM). Photo shows BLD members and their guests posing for a souvenir photo. (Photo by Riza Antonio)

It was just a simple event as there was nothing spectacular about it, and yet the Bukas Loob sa Diyos-Detroit – BLD Christmas party in the evening of last Dec. 8 at PACCM (Philippine American Cultural Center of Michigan) was enjoyable and memorable.

The entertainment numbers were presented by children, mostly grandkids of BLD members, and it was fun watching the little boys doing their thing on the stage and singing their heart out to the delight of the audience.

The performers included Alexis, Rachel and Gloria, all Dimaguila grandchildren, who did the Kpop dance; Johanna Mae Gueco, who belted out a contemporary song; Jace, Drew, Ethan and Elijah, who did a dance number; Matthew Buckowski, a dance; and Kristina Faraon, a song.

Another performer, Rachel Dimaguila, did a lyrical dance entitled “Footprints in the Sun.” It was a well-applauded performance as it showcased Rachel’s ballet-dancing skill, which is comparable to those of professional performers in Broadway musicals.

Then there was this “touch-of-class” performance by pianist Francisco “Frank” Mahinay, 75 years old, whose unique style of piano playing drew an enthusiastic applause from the audience. He regaled the crowd with his non-stop playing of popular songs in English and Tagalog. He has more than 500 songs in his repertoire.

His piano selections for Christmas include “Am Looking at a Four-Leaf Clover,” “Roll Out the Barrel,” “Angels We Have Heard on High,” “Blue Christmas,” “Deck the Halls,” “Frosty the Snowman,” “I Saw Mommy Kissing Sta. Claus,” and “Jingle Bell Rock.”

Frank, who hails from Bohol, used to live in California. He moved to Livonia, Michigan some three years ago. An accountant by profession, he played at piano bars and nightclubs in California for at least 25 years. He said he is available to perform at parties. (He may be called at 734-716-3554.)

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Aside from the entertainment numbers, another highlight of the evening was the presence of Santa Claus who announced his arrival with his jolly “Ho, Ho, Ho.” Indeed, the children had a good time receiving gifts from Santa and posing pictures with him.

And, of course, there was plenty of food. The dishes included pancit, fried chicken, salmon, and beef strips with broccoli. The were also Filipino desserts such as “suman sa latik” and leche plan.

Bukas Loob sa Diyos-Detroit

The success of the event was credited to the BLD District Council of Stewards as well as to the event organizers, mostly members of the family of Selwyn and Lily Tungol. Sabrina Tungol Perry served as DJ. The emcees were Selwyn and Paz Fetizanan. Sofie Elicanal delivered the closing remark.

BLD Christmas Party

To many of the old folks, the camaraderie was important and memorable. They were elated by the opportunity to greet their sisters and brothers in Christ during these happiest days of the year when Baby Jesus was born.