IN PHOTOS: Colors, icons welcome Palarong Pambansa delegates in Ilocos

Karl Cedrick Basco, ABS-CBN News

Posted at Apr 16 2018 01:15 AM | Updated as of Apr 20 2018 09:42 PM

BANTAY, Ilocos Sur - Sports icons crossed paths with their possible successors at the 2018 Palarong Pambansa as they graced the opening ceremonies here on Sunday.

Present in the ceremonies were billiards world champion Efren "Bata" Reyes, track and field multi-medalist Elma Muros, bowling world champion Paeng Nepomuceno, chess grand master Eugene Torre, basketball icon Ramon Fernandez, Rio Olympics silver medalist Hidilyn Diaz and Youth Olympic Games gold medalist Luis Gabriel Moreno.

Moreno was also handpicked to light the cauldron through a bow and arrow while one of the greatest sprinters of the Philippines, Lydia de Vega, was awarded with a lifetime achievement recognition.

De Vega was not able to attend the ceremonies but her daughter and former De La Salle University volleyball standout, Stephanie Mercado, accepted the award in her behalf.

Carrying the flag, 8 Filipino sports champions greeted the 10,000-strong student-athletes, who were clad in color-coded uniforms.

Athletes also braved the extreme heat as they paraded from Ilocos Sur's Capitol to the stadium, wearing their hats, jackets, and pants. Some even wore their traditional costumes like the athletes from MIMAROPA and Cordillera Administrative Region.

Other contingents also brought huge and fancy props which they used during their short presentation in the ceremonies.

Here are some of the scenes during the opening ceremonies of the Palaro:

President Duterte graces the opening ceremonies of the 2018 Palarong Pambansa in Ilocos Sur. Mark Demayo, ABS-CBN News

Athletes parade along the streets during the opening ceremonies of the 2018 Palarong Pambansa in Ilocos Sur. Mark Demayo, ABS-CBN News

The official mascot stands in the middle of competing athletes during the opening ceremonies of the 2018 Palarong Pambansa in Ilocos Sur. Mark Demayo, ABS-CBN News

Youth Olympics gold medalist Luis Gabriel Moreno carries the torch for the lighting of the cauldron during the opening ceremonies of the 2018 Palarong Pambansa in Ilocos Sur. Mark Demayo, ABS-CBN News

Youth Olympics gold medalist Luis Gabriel Moreno lights the cauldron during the opening ceremonies of the 2018 Palarong Pambansa in Ilocos Sur. Mark Demayo, ABS-CBN News

Youth Olympics gold medalist Luis Gabriel Moreno lights the cauldron during the opening ceremonies of the 2018 Palarong Pambansa in Ilocos Sur. Mark Demayo, ABS-CBN News

The delegates release the 'frienship balloons' during the opening ceremonies of the 2018 Palarong Pambansa in Ilocos Sur.Mark Demayo, ABS-CBN News

Philippine sports icons greet the competing delegates during the opening ceremonies of the 2018 Palarong Pambansa in Ilocos Sur. Mark Demayo, ABS-CBN News

Fireworks cap the opening ceremonies of the 2018 Palarong Pambansa in Ilocos Sur. Mark Demayo, ABS-CBN News

Some delegations have choreographed routines during the opening ceremonies of the 2018 Palarong Pambansa in Ilocos Sur. Mark Demayo, ABS-CBN News

Philippine sports icons carry the Philippine flag during the opening ceremonies of the 2018 Palarong Pambansa in Ilocos Sur. Mark Demayo, ABS-CBN News

Delegates from Region 6, Western Visayas, parade during the opening ceremonies of the 2018 Palarong Pambansa in Ilocos Sur. Mark Demayo, ABS-CBN News

Delegates of Region 7, Central Visayas, parade during the opening ceremonies of the 2018 Palarong Pambansa in Ilocos Sur. Mark Demayo, ABS-CBN News

Delegates of Region 5, Bicol, parade during the opening ceremonies of the 2018 Palarong Pambansa in Ilocos Sur. Mark Demayo, ABS-CBN News

Delegates from the Administrative Region of Muslim Mindanao parade during the opening ceremonies of the 2018 Palarong Pambansa in Ilocos Sur. Mark Demayo, ABS-CBN News

Delegates from Region 13, CARAGA, parade during the opening ceremonies of the 2018 Palarong Pambansa in Ilocos Sur. Mark Demayo, ABS-CBN News

Delegates of Region 10, Northern Mindanao, parade during the opening ceremonies of the 2018 Palarong Pambansa in Ilocos Sur. Mark Demayo, ABS-CBN News

Delegates from Region 2, Cagayan Valley, parade during the opening ceremonies of the 2018 Palarong Pambansa in Ilocos Sur. Mark Demayo, ABS-CBN News

Delegates from Cordillera Administrative Region parade during the opening ceremonies of the 2018 Palarong Pambansa in Ilocos Sur. Mark Demayo, ABS-CBN News

Delegates from the National Capital Region parade during the opening ceremonies of the 2018 Palarong Pambansa in Ilocos Sur. Mark Demayo, ABS-CBN News

Delegates from Region 4-B, MIMAROPA, during the opening ceremonies of the 2018 Palarong Pambansa in Ilocos Sur. Mark Demayo, ABS-CBN News

Delegates from Region 3, Central Luzon, parade during the opening ceremonies of the 2018 Palarong Pambansa in Ilocos Sur. Mark Demayo, ABS-CBN News

Delegates from Region 9, Zamboanga, parade during the opening ceremonies of the 2018 Palarong Pambansa in Ilocos Sur. Mark Demayo, ABS-CBN News

Delegates from Region 11, Davao, parade during the opening ceremonies of the 2018 Palarong Pambansa in Ilocos Sur. Mark Demayo, ABS-CBN News

Delegates from Region 8, Eastern Visayas, parade during the opening ceremonies of the 2018 Palarong Pambansa in Ilocos Sur. Mark Demayo, ABS-CBN News

Delegates from Region 12, the SOCCSKSARGEN, parade during the opening ceremonies of the 2018 Palarong Pambansa in Ilocos Sur. Mark Demayo, ABS-CBN News

Delegates fron Region 4-A, Southern Tagalog, parade during the opening ceremonies of the 2018 Palarong Pambansa in Ilocos Sur. Mark Demayo, ABS-CBN News

Delegates of the host region, Region 1 from Ilocos, parade during the opening ceremonies of the 2018 Palarong Pambansa in Ilocos Sur. Mark Demayo, ABS-CBN News

Competitors line up during the opening ceremonies of the 2018 Palarong Pambansa in Ilocos Sur. Mark Demayo, ABS-CBN News

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