Cebu fiesta draws 8M

CEBU CITY — A bigger venue is being contemplated for next year’s Sinulog, after the large crowd that turned up for Sunday’s festivities raised the possibility of a stampede.

“The Cebu City Sports Center is getting too small for the Sinulog. I think we have to look for a bigger venue,” said Ricky Ballesteros, Sinulog Foundation Inc. (SFI) executive director.

He said the coliseum being planned at the South Road Properties (SRP) would be better suited for the event.

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The day may have started out gloomy, but the weather did not stop some eight million people from lining up along this city’s streets to watch the 11-hour parade.

The crowd estimate came from Police Regional Office (PRO)-Central Visayas Director Lani-o Nerez, who made rounds of the parade route several times.

The estimate included those who turned up for the early mass at the Basilica del Sto. Niño, where people left no free space in the Pilgrim Center that can hold 12,000.

No violence marred either the religious or cultural festivities.

However, pickpockets kept busy and worries about traffic gridlocks prompted City Mayor Tomas Osmeña to cancel the permits for street parties scheduled after the parade. (more)

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