Welcome to Paete! To say that it is the Woodcarving Capital of the Philippines (I hear dissent from the wood artists of Betis, Pampanga, he he!) would remove the focus on Paete's many other gifts. After all, woodcarving, even if it the town's main industry, isn't the only one that gives honor to its residents. Anyway, that title was given this town by a declaration of President Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo on March 15, 2005.
The best times to visit Paete would be in January, July, April and October. The Salibanda on the last week of January, the Town Fiesta on the 25th of July, the Cenakulo on Holy Week (I was told they do this every day of the Week!), and the Lanzones Festival in October are enough to satiate your festival fixations. (As an aside, Camiguin Island in Northern Mindanao also has a similar lanzones festival on the same month.) Also, do not miss the two versions of Salubong done by the Catholic Church and the Aglipayans. This will be on Easter Sunday, of course.
Ice carving is said to be held a day before the town fiesta. In fact, a lot of carvers who've run out of wood (as I said in a post below, there's an ongoing log ban) have worked on luxury ships as ice carvers. There are actually a lot more mini-festivals featuring Filipino martial arts (using 'arnis') and even a santol fest in August. Well, well, well! Looks like living in Paete is never a bore!!!
Baskets of paper mache lanzones line the main streets of Paete - a tribute to the town's many products - from wood to paper to lanzones!
Note: Thanks, Tutubi, for the correction. I already wrote Sierra Madre when I posted this, but a local said last Sunday that it was Makiling. Haaay...