Showing posts with label halloween. Show all posts
Showing posts with label halloween. Show all posts

Wednesday, November 12, 2014

Scariest places in Bohol

Every Halloween, horror fans take the opportunity to scare others stiff.  One of the best parts of Halloween is being able to dress up with your most terrifying costumes that give passers-by a fright and to share your spookiest and funniest stories.

As early as September, the Bohol Quality (BQ) Mall has displayed Halloween costumes and props at the second floor. From babies to adults, everyone can choose the Halloween costumes and accessories BQ Mall has to offer.

BQ Mall has the latest Halloween costumes and ghouls 
of all sizes along with all the party supplies to be sure your 
Halloween parties are frightening.
At the Island City Mall, cashiers and salesclerks are wearing witch hats while male salesclerks are wearing clown hats to “attract” mall goers.  No, they’re not scary!

Incidentally, ICM will hold the annual scariest Halloween costume contest on Oct. 30 where hardcore Halloween aficionados will showcase their horrifying new costumes.  Kid will not worry because the Trick or Treat will be on October 31, 1 p.m. at the Activity Center.

The spirit of Halloween also invades Chocoreich Cafe (along Gallares Street near Malou Atienza Salon). The owner, Dalareich Polot, adds some “fright” with items definitely more inspired by the lighter side of Halloween. Visitors can enjoy their chocolates and sikwate with spooky and friendly Halloween atmosphere. 

Halloween is perfect time to raise the dead. While you can creep yourself out at haunted places, why not go for the real deal.  There are terrifying locations in Bohol for those who like to take the “ghost tour.” Some are fictional and some are very, very real. Like it or not, these places will always be a part of our psyche.

I warn you: These spooky sites are not for the faint of heart.

Tagbilaran City is a good place to start your “ghost tour.”  Even though Tagbilaran is now a bustling city, it is a home to a lot of the “scariest” places. A wide range of terrifying stories can be heard from anyone who has experienced ghostly encounters. 

Witches at your service! Cashiers and salesclerks 
of the Island City Mall wear witch hats to attract visitors.
The Bohol Medical Center (renamed Tagbilaran City Hospital and Bohol Coop Hospital) along Airport Road, is part history site, part hotbed of paranormal activity. Before it was abandoned, it is reported of many ghostly sightings. Ghosts of former patients and nurses are said to be walking through the hallways. Visitors claim to see things move or feel the presence of spirits.

Vina (family name withheld) shared that she went to the hospital to visit her friend who gave birth. At the entrance, it looked ordinary with nurses and some patients.

“At first, nothing’s unusual,” said Vina.

When she went to the delivery/nursery room, an unidentified boy accompanied him. While inside the nursery room, the lights were flickering on and off and no one inside. A haunting whisper filled the room. Then, she heard chilling cries of babies. Vina couldn’t believe her eyes and turned to look at the boy to make sure she wasn’t dreaming. However, in front of her was a boy with bloody eyes who said, “wala siya mahadluk!”  

“Nahadluk ko liman ka nahimong abat ang bata,” narrated Vina. “Naa pa jud katawa nga hadluk paminawon.”

The old Bohol Coop Hospital -Contributed Photo
Vina realized that something strange things happened. She closed her eyes and prayed. After saying “amen,” when she opened her eyes she was at the flagpole of the hospital. She hurriedly left the place.

“I just learned that the hospital has moved to its new location in Dao three days before ko mingbisita sa hospital,” said Vina.

The hospital is no longer there, but to this day, people still claim to hear voices and unexplained appearances from the deserted building.

The Marapao Street apparently has several ghostly residents. People share that they see “white ladies” and other strange creatures at night.

After 5 p.m. where Capitol employees leave the offices, the place becomes silent and creepy. There are reports of workers feeling like someone was watching over and sudden cold feelings being experienced.

“Diri ko mangatang sakyanan pauli sa Dauis. Mingaw na kaayo. Ma-feel nimo nga hadluk jud,” said Rhea Estoquia.

In 1990s, residents had reported the appearance of a pantasma, a giant ghoul with chains on its arms and legs with fire, near the old PLDT building (now the EDCOM building).

Prof. Marianito Luspo, one of the original residents, confirmed this story when I had investigated ghostly stories in this place three years ago. He shared that his cousin Marlon (not his real name) saw the pantasma.

It was late at night and Marlon was patiently waiting for the pantasma. And all of the sudden the dogs kept on barking and growling. He heard sounds of chains cranking. He tried to look outside through a small hole in the wall and he saw the pantasma. What made him terrified was when the pantasma stopped at the Luspo’s residence and looked directly to the hole and their eyes met! Overwhelmed with fear, he almost fainted.

Bohol Provincial Capitol- Photo: Wikipedia
The Old Capitol building is also scary. Strange noises and infamous headless apparitions of priests are reported to be seen in this building.

Bruce Zabala who worked as media relations officer then shared that he saw a headless priest at the second floor. The headless priest went to the Treasurer’s Office, which served as a prison during the Japanese occupation. 

Witnesses report eerie sounds. Emerson Pinos was working alone at the then PGMA Office to finish a project when he heard ghostly moans and assorted noises as well.

A high ranking official confirmed that he saw small footprints on the toilet. He also heard a flush coming from the toilet and it was really weird because no one had seen someone used the toilet.

Until now, some guards and employees swear to hearing strange noises and disturbing shouts. It is believed that the headless ghosts and noises are from the priests and prisoners beheaded during World War II. Some workers say they don’t hear anything unusual, but no one works late.

Many people state they get an eerie unnatural feeling when visiting the Bohol Museum. It is the home to preserved human specimens. Included among the museum’s vast array of fascinating and sometimes scary items are the skulls of ancient Boholanos and a corpse called “Boholana Lady” from Mansasa. You’ll figure out why when you go.

The poorly lit Mansasa street with huge trees near Mansasa Elem. School has been known to be the home of supernatural beings. A lot of people avoid driving and passing by in this street.  A ‘white lady’ who hails tricycles in the middle of the night, rides for a short while, and then mysteriously disappears.

The Binayran Road in barangay Dampas is said to be the most haunted road in Tagbilaran City. Drivers have reported everything from strangely dressed wanderers, to ghosts, to phantom vehicles that chase them to its end.

Rudy (family name withheld) sold his house after his wife and kids were possessed by evil spirits. There were appearances of agta at the balite trees.

A lot of habal-habal drivers have already encountered agta and big black dog including this woman who would walk to the middle of the road to stop a passing vehicle. Naturally, a driver would stop to avoid hitting her. She would then ask to be brought to the water reservoir, but would disappear before getting there.

The tragedy that took place early January where a family died has contributed to its haunted reputation. Strange sights and sounds are reported at the crime scene.  

Schools are scary, too. All school campuses especially those that have seen and survived the war have stories of haunting.  And most of the schools in Tagbilaran City were built on what used to be cemetery grounds.

Dr. Cecilio Putong NHS Photo: Wikipedia
Dr. Cecilio Putong National High School (DCPNHS), Tagbilaran City Central Elem. School, Holy Spirit School, Mansasa Elem. School, Booy South Elem. School, University of Bohol ST Building and the abandoned Holy Name University are believed to be surrounded by ghosts and creepy spirits that haunt its students and teachers to this day.

The Imelda Building of DCPNHS is famous for the apparition of the white ladies and duwendes. Until now, stories of strange apparitions and aromatic smell coming out of nowhere are consistently reported.

Sightings of the mysterious headless nun are reported by students and teachers of the Holy Spirit School.

The appearance of the “red lady” at the Administrative Building (near Am-Am’s Corner) of UB was reported by two female high school students. While they were inside the comfort room, they saw the “red lady” looking at them with an evil smile.

The abandoned Holy Name University in Lessage Street is famous for “ghostly apparitions” especially at the 4th floor where a mysterious lady would appear. Several times, guards could hear classes in the dark classroom and a black giant dog would appear at the gym.

The balite tree in Guiwanon, Baclayon is known to be the home of rich spirits who ordered luxury cars. 

Between Manga and Cortes, the abandoned, fairly small cemetery (unnamed) contains plots, many of which are unoccupied. The cemetery’s first official burials began before the Spaniards. Over a hundred years later reports of treasure huntings and hauntings in this ancient cemetery reached an all-time high.

Witnesses have reported seeing ghosts and other supernatural beings. And as everyone knows, disturbing a grave site (no matter what’s buried there) is one of the top ways to provoke ghosts.

The abandoned Nature Park and Fishing Village in Inabanga plays host to several ghosts, including the agta, white and black ladies and other supernatural beings. It has also been the focus of several “blood-curdling ghost stories.”  It is also near the Macaban Cave which is the city of supernatural beings or engkantos. Visit and decide for yourself how spooky it is.

Anda cemetery has reports of cold presence and menacing feelings. It is unique because it houses an “ark” (similar to Noah in the Bible) where believers of a cult are waiting for another flood. While many ghosts are rumored to call this place their home, Inday Potencia, the local saint of Anda, reigns supreme.

Scary, isn’t it? But these are just stories to scare you! Are you brave enough?

Thanks for your letters, all will be answered. Comments welcome at, follow leoudtohan at Twitter /Facebook.

Sunday, November 4, 2012

Remembering our loved ones…and CPG

Scene: Six teams are competing for the first Tarsier Ultimate Frisbee Tournament held at CPG Sports Complex yesterday and today. According to Beryl Lupot, one of the organizers, Ultimate is a team sport played with a flying disc. Wikipedia adds, “The object of the game is to score points by passing the disc to a player in the opposing end zone, similar to an end zone in American football or the in-goal area in rugby.  Players may not run with the disc, and must keep a pivot while holding the disc.”
Scene: Nearly 100 children together with their parents celebrated Halloween by trick-or-treating last Oct. 28 at the Island City Mall. The Activity Center was decorated in a spooky yet fun way for the Halloween celebration. The children roamed the mall in their best costumes and were given prizes for being scary-looking, cute and having the most elaborate disguise. A one-month old baby girl was the youngest participant.
Seen: The 12 contestants of the Scariest Halloween Costume 2012. The contestants dressed in movie-inspired Halloween outfits, like Freddie, Jason and other evil dead characters. (Lamok:” 'I'll swallow your soul!')
If I do Visita Iglesia during Holy Week, I do Visita Cementerio - that is my own version of visiting cemeteries during Kalag-Kalag. My visit gives me spiritual realization and the chance to know more of our sam-ang and the people who passed away.
Days before Kalag-Kalag, Inday Charity and I visited an ancient graveyard at Basdio, Guindulman.  There were many boat-shaped coffins in Duero, Candijay, Mabini and Anda which were utilized by our ancestors to understand the belief system particularly in relation to beliefs about the soul and the afterlife. I have been there several times and I’d noticed that only few of the boat-shaped coffins or bangka can be found wedged on cliff sides.
Boat coffin
On boat coffins, Prof. Jose Marianito Luspo said, “It’s part of the belief system of the ancient people that death is like a river or passage to other life which can be reached by a body of water. Among the ancient Greek they believe the so called river Styx that can traverse by spirit on his way to the afterlife. It’s not surprising, here in the Philippine also has that tradition. We human beings are born to the womb of our mother which is always liquid-filled. Perhaps this give an idea to the ancient people that when we die we pass thru the passage.”
 On Nov. 1, I visited the Dampas Catholic Cemetery. It houses the remains of the dean of Boholano journalists lawyer Zoilo Dejaresco and wife Rosario, Miguel Parras, Bernardino Inting, Asuncion Mira, composer and military man Alberto Cainglet, Dr. Margarito Lim, et al.
Few meters from Dampas Catholic Cemetery is the cemetery for UCCP members. It houses the remains of Dr. James Alexander Graham and his wife Merne. Graham was a native of Scotland, the first medical missionary in Bohol.
The Masonic Cemetery of the Dagohoy Lodge No. 84 houses the remains of UB first president Victoriano D. Tirol Sr. and his wife Iluminada, Pio Castro, Catalino Castillo, Angelita Tormis, et al.
The Victoria Memorial Park was laid out in 1975 in a park-like, rural setting away from the center of the city. Notables interred here include Doña Basing, Obdulio Caturza Sr. and his wife Juana, businessman Antonio Ong Guat, Carolina Alvarez, church founder Dr. Nelson Rio Sr., et al.  (Note: Boy Kalag is there to guide you.)
From Tagbilaran, I went to Calape to visit the tomb of another great Boholano. Outside the Calape Catholic Cemetery was the tomb of Roman “Yoyoy” Tesorio-Villame, the Philippine King of Novelty Songs.
I was roasted under the scorching sun when I went to Loon Catholic Cemetery to find the tomb or grave of Justino “Tining” Romea. However, I failed to find his tomb. An old woman told me that Nong Tining was buried in Maribojoc.  I also saw the tomb of Juan “Aning” Relampagos, a World War II veteran and mayor of Loon (1951 to 1959).
From Loon, I went back to Tagbilaran to visit the Taloto Catholic Cemetery to offer flowers to my relatives. And I spent the night with my cousins at Victoria Memorial Park to visit the graves of my sister, aunts, uncles and relatives.
There were no major hitches as we remember our loved ones during Kalag-Kalag. Floral offerings were made as early as Nov. 1. Many of us stayed overnight at cemeteries. Many took it as an opportunity to make money. Vendors sold flowers, candles, siomai, doughnuts and other food products. Children cleaned the tombs or graves for money. They also collected and sold melted candles.
Memories give comfort.
Today, November 4, Bohol celebrates the 116th birthday of Most Illustrious Son, the late President Carlos P. Garcia (CPG). As we remember CPG on his 116th birth anniversary, may we be inspired by his example of prioritizing the interests of the Filipino people.
Born in November 4, 1896, CPG was a teacher, poet, orator, lawyer, public official, political economist and guerilla leader. His administration was anchored on three basic policies: Austerity, Filipino First Policy and Cultural Revival.
In addition to being a political leader, CPG was a poet, orator and teacher. He was known as the “Prince of Visayan Poets” and the “Bard from Bohol.”
I am putting out the lyrics of one of my favorite Visayan songs that has a humbling effect on me and, I’m sure, on anybody who digests its lyrics. Yes, I’ve put out the song Carlos P. Garcia: Bantugang Bol-anon by Onecimo “Onie” Oclarit from his Ubilandia album for CPG‘s birthday today and I think another replaying of it anytime won’t do any harm.
Okay, all together now:
Carlos P. Garcia: Bantugang Bol-anon
Ang lalawigang Bol-anon
May anak nga bantugan
Matarung ug maligdong
Sulundon ug buotan.
Ang iyang mga mithi
Gugma ug kaangayan
Pag- alagad nga hingpit
Sa yuta tang natawhan.
Ug halad ka sa langit
Alang Bol-anon katawhan
Ang mga buhat mong matarung
Kanunay namong gikamingawan
Ang dila mong balaknon
Garbo ning yutang tabunon
Carlos P. Garcia buhi ka sa tanang panahon.
Ikaw mao ang kadasig,
Ikaw mao ang kalagsik,
Ikaw mao ang kahayag,
Sa dalan namong mangitngit.
Among paninguhaun ang pagsunod sa imong mga lakang
Ug ang imong pagtulun-an
Dili namo hikalimtan.
And maybe while humming that song, you and I can further reflect on the greatness of CPG with the help of another song, Pres. Carlos P. Garcia, a finalist of the 1996 Bohol Song Festival performed by Marjorie Rebuya and written by Rudy Tutor.
Ikaw Carlos P. Garcia
Ang kanunay ginahandum sa mga Pilipinhon
Tungod sa imong kinaiya
nga kanamong mga Bol-anon mapasigarbuhon.
Ang pagpangalagad mo sa katawhan
Gipanaminan, gilarawan ug dili hikalimtan
Gibuhos mo ang  kaugalingon
Aron pagtagbaw sa kinabag-an mong mga igsoon…
Nagsuod siya sa pakarepresetante
Hangtud nga nahimong nasudnong presidente
Batid na ka pangagamhanan
First Filipino First Policy ikaw ang amahan
Talagsaun kang alagad nga wa magpaadunahan
Ni wala magpabuhong sa kaugalingon sa pangatundanan
Matiunud-anon ka ug ang dughan mo puno sa gugma
Pagkadalaygon mo President Carlos P. Garcia…
Just recently, Inday Charity and I visited the CPG Heritage House (formerly the Bohol Museum). The last time I have been there was in 2002, but it is good to see that the CPG Heritage House is still there to make the dream of leaving a legacy for CPG – the man and his works – but also to create an opportunity for this legacy to continue, which the heritage house now stands for.
Spending a day at the CPG Heritage House is like getting reacquainted with the life and works of CPG. It is a two storey strong concrete, white house. On display here are some of the late president's memorabilia - you may take time to see old photographs and read some notes about CPG.
Thanks for your letters, all will be answered. Comments welcome at, follow leoudtohan at Twitter /Facebook.

Sunday, October 28, 2012

Songs of praise and worship with Don Moen on Nov. 10


Scene: From Lion and fellow journalist Priscilla Richards, this invitation:  The U.S. Embassy will host “U.S. Election Watch 2012,” in partnership with SM City Cebu on November 7, 2012 from 10:00 a.m. to 3 pm.  Guests at the event can vote in a “mock election,” watch live elections returns from the actual polls in the U.S., and take part in intermission activities such as trivia games, a free photo booth, and avail of elections-related information. Representatives of the U.S. Embassy will be on hand to answer questions pertaining to the U.S. elections, and the U.S. electoral system.
Atty. Delgado
Scene: As Halloween approaches, excited costume enthusiasts queue at BQ Mall to buy some Halloween costumes and props such as skull face glowing or bleeding costume, witches, vampires, hanging screaming zombie, inflatable body form and other ghoulish trick-or-treating costumes. Skulls and other scary objects are to greet people at the entrance of the Island City Mall. Bohol's first hotel, the Hotel La Roca, has creepy and creative Halloween decorations. At the Tagbilaran City Square, Hoocha has also Halloween decors to treat customers.  There will be an Ultimate Halloween Dance Party on Oct. 31 at JAD Memorial Center in Loboc town. Dubbed the Hottest Halloween Disco in Loboc, entrance fee is P30 with one bottle SMB, while partygoers can pay P400 pesos per table which is good for four persons. Tickets are available at the Loboc Tourism Office or call 510-1428. 
Seen: Lawyer Julius Gregory Delgado is spotted in Japan. He is enjoying Kyoto, Japan’s ancient city and Osaka and Nara. He posted on Facebook: “Kampai para sa mahabang buhay! In joy and sorrow, triumph and defeat, Sake is part of Japenese life!”
God will make a way
Where there seems to be no way
He works in ways we cannot see
He will make a way for me

He will be my guide
Hold me closely to His side
With love and strength for each new day
He will make a way, He will make a way…
               - Don Moen
Don Moen
What an inspiring (powerful) song, isn’t it? I’ve been listening to Don Moen ever since I was a kid at the old Caingget neighborhood. I love his songs. It’s really true that God will make a way for each one of us whatever troubles or big problems we have. God will never leave nor forsake us. 
Many people from all over the world can testify that God Will Make A Way has helped them (including yours truly) renew their faith so many times especially during tough times when we feel like God is nowhere to be found. 
Here is a trivia: Don Moen’s song God Will Make A Way sprang from a tragedy in his family. According to, “after learning that his young nephew was killed in a car accident, Don Moen searched for some way to help bring comfort to his grieving family even as he struggled with his own sorrow. While reading Isaiah 43, he asked God to give him something that would bring hope to the family in the middle of a hopeless situation. As he prayed, the words for “God Will Make A Way,” came to mind. He works in ways we cannot see, He will make a way for me. For a while, that song remained a private message for his family. But slowly, he began sharing it with others and soon found that it was a message for the whole church. A message to cling to when “there seems to be no way.”
Don Moen will perform at the Bohol Wisdom gym on Nov. 10 in a concert produced by Ovation Productions. The concert is part of his three-day tour “God Will Make A Way! Philippine Tour 2012.” (Don Moen will have performances on Nov. 8 at the Smart-Araneta Coliseum in Cubao, Quezon City and at the JCCU Auditorium in Butuan City on Nov.11.)
Expect Don Moen to include in his repertoire his hits praise-and-music songs that interpret closely the words of the Bible, such as God Will Make A Way, Thank You, Lord, God Is Good All The Time and Give Thanks.
Other Christian songs that he has popularized include Lord, I Offer My Life To You, I Want To Be Where You Are, Blessed Be The Name Of The Lord, Celebrate, Jesus, Celebrate, Great Is Thy Faithfulness, and many more.
Now at 62, Don Moen is as captivating as ever, treating audiences all over the world with his worship songs. His voice quality has remained the same through the years. He produced a total of 11 volumes in the series, including the first album, Hosanna! Music: Give Thanks, which sold hundreds of thousands of copies and became the label’s bestseller and his list of accomplishments (a Dove Award) is a testament to an incredible professional career as singer, composer, pastor and producer of Christian music. 
Don Moen has enjoyed a long music career that refuses to fade away because God and the fans won’t allow it.  It will be a history that Don Moen makes his Bohol debut on Nov.10. You can’t afford to miss watching one of the greatest performers in Christian music history — it’s a chance of a lifetime.
Tickets are priced at P1, 200 (Gold/Court Area), P700 (Silver/ Lower Side Bleacher) and P400 (Bronze/General Admission).  Ticket outlets are PCBS (call 501 0823), Island City Mall, Bohol Tropics Resort and All Dunkin Donut Outlets.  For details, call
0923-160-5876 (Claire), 0927-211-2448 and 0921-284-7653 (Rachael).

Mayor Nene gets warm birthday cheers from people
Sevilla Mayor Digal
Sevilla’s well-loved public servant Mayor Ernesita “Nene” Digal celebrated her birthday last Saturday, October 20, at Digal’s residence in Poblacion, Sevilla town. 
Rain or shine, the celebration went smoothly as the people of Sevilla were treated a birthday celebration ala fiesta. Heavy rain didn’t stop those invited from showing up. 
Mayor Nene, as she is fondly called in Sevilla, played host to her people and friends from academe and politics, such as Loboc Mayor Leon Calipusan, reelectionist Rep. Art Yap and former provincial board member Josil Trabajo.
"What is Mayor Nene’s wish?"  Inday Charity chided the birthday girl. Mayor Nene’s daughter, Karen, who’s former SK municipal federation president, answered for her mom, “Good health and mudaog siya!” 
Mayor Nene is seeking reelection in May 2013 elections. 
Also present were her Vice Mayor (to be) Councilor  Victoriano Fernandez and councilors (to be)  Geny Calamba, Marcelita Adolfo, Glenn Rubenial, Beverly Beniga, Dinah Barrete and reelectionists Councilors Marcelo Item, Antonio Patac and Anastacia Lagrosa
Of course, Mayor Nene’s husband, former Mayor Ceferino Digal, was also there entertaining guests and visitors. He has significantly improved Sevilla during his three consecutive terms.
Tracy is elected gay assn prexy
Tracy Torres
Bohol's most popular make-up artist and hairstylist Tracy Remolador Torres is the newly-elected president of the newly-formed gay association of Tagbilaran City. 
According to Kim (who posted on Facebook that s(he) is hoping for peace, unity and progress to the group),  other elected officials are Jun Quimpan as vice president,  Charlow Arbasto as secretary, EJ Relampagos (treasurer), Rany Gespert ( auditor), Rizalino Torralba aka Inday Rufing and Alexis Calediña are press relation officers, sergeant at arms are Reynald Culgue, Stanley Hamilton Sevilla and Jonathan Ocat and Donna Betos (muse). 
The oathtaking of the new officials and members is in December.
 The United Society of Artists (USA) is the newest Tagbilaran-based gay/bisexual and transgender rights organization and the new progressive voice for full gay equality. Tracy has distinguished himself as a strong supporter and advocate for human rights. 
“It is both exciting and a privilege to be part of this association," he says. “I am deeply inspired by the people of all ages and circumstances and from all backgrounds who create positive change in their communities.”
According to Tracy, the Boholano Gay Community has undeniably been the backbone of many events in the province. 
“I am confident that this organization will reach its goals of providing peace, unity, and progress to the Gay Community of Tagbilaran City,” says Tracy. “I am encouraging everyone to actively participate in all our advocacies. I, as the President of this organization, I will do my best for the betterment of the gay community of this city and for the progress of our home province Bohol  and with that, I encourage everyone to join me in this cause because we are only as strong as we are united, as weak as we are divided! Thank you!”
Thanks for your letters, all will be answered. Comments welcome at, follow leoudtohan at Twitter /Facebook.