The TanHoldings float, which portrayed a traditional hut, called an utt, being cupped by a giant hand—the entire ensemble representing the Marianas—took first place in this year’s Liberation day parade float competition.
The United Organization took second place for the float competition, featuring a vehicle destroyed during the wake of Super Typhoon Yutu and members dressed up as military personnel and aid officers to display the Marianas after the super typhoon.
Eusebio Borja and his family’s entry came in third place, featuring an old-school bull cart called a karetan guaka, which is a traditional cart. In Thursday’s parade, it was being drawn by a mwar-wearing russet cow and being led by Borja family members dressed in islandwear.
The Governor’s Office float, which was created in collaboration with the Carolinian Affairs Office, completed the top four winners. Their float entry consisted of destroyed homes and its members as the people of the CNMI working together in the wake of Super Typhoon Yutu.
Parade subcommittee chair Brad Ruszala announced the names of the winning floats last Thursday as the Liberation Day festivities at the Garapan Fishing Base were winding down.
The winning float gets $3,000. The second-best float gets $2,000, while the third and fourth placers get $1,000 and $500, respectively.
This year’s theme for the float competition was “Marianas Strong” and competitors were challenged to show how the people of the CNMI were able to endure and continue on after Super Typhoon Yutu.
In total, 14 floats were exhibited in last Thursday’s parade, with eight competitive floats and six non-competitive floats.
The 2019 Liberation Day Committee also announced the winners of the Liberation Day raffle. Jadren Lutop took home the grand prize of $10,000, while Jennifer Lizama won $5,000 as the first-place winner. The second-place winning ticket had no name and the winner would receive $3,000. Completing the raffle was Micky Itibus, who will be receiving $1,000.
The Liberation Day Committee informed Saipan Tribune that they printed about 150,000 tickets prior to this year’s Liberation Queen fundraising pageant and raffle.