Palm Grass Message for the 146th birthday of Cebu hero Gen. Pantaleon Villegas

 July 27, 2019


To all of us gathered here to celebrate the 146th birthday of our hero, Gen. Pantaleon Villegas, aka Leon Kilat (students from Cebu universities, members of the heritage community, Cebu heroes’ descendants, Bag-ong Teatro Junquera partners and actors, Ginoong Pilipinas Cebu candidates, guests and friends):


Maayong pag-abot sa Palm Grass! Malipayong pagsaulog sa ika-usa ka gatos, kap-atan ug unom ka tuig nga adlaw’ng natawhan sa bayani sa Sugbo nga si Heneral Leon Kilat!


Today, as we gather here at Palm Grass Ikaduhang Andana, named in honor of Heneral Leon Kilat, in this function hall named in honor of the Battle of Tres de Abril, once more we express our admiration and our love for our valiant, fearless, and selfless hero, who is Abtik pas Kilat, quicker than lightning. We also reiterate our commitment of doing what we can, so that everyone in Cebu would know and be inspired of the values of our Cebu hero.


Palm Grass takes pride that 121 years ago, our hero attended a major Katipunan organizational meeting, a day before the Battle of Tres de Abril in the house of Don Isidro Guivelondo, an ancestor of the owners of Palm Grass.


Indeed, Palm Grass’ love for Leon Kilat knows no bounds. Since its soft opening, Palm Grass has made it a mission to make known our Cebu hero Leon Kilat.

-Palm Grass published the book authored by Emil Justimbaste, Leon Kilat (The untold story of the 1898 Cebu Revolution). It is currently sold out, but do reserve your copies as we are reprinting soon.

– We have artworks on Leon Kilat, such as the wood sculpture by artist Radel Paredes and digital arts by UP Cebu Fine Arts students.

-A year ago, in partnership with Hong Kong-based Asia Pacific Focus Features Pros Laput, we made community-created videos  with Cebu students– the Padayon Sizts, Suroy-Saysay, Kinasing. These are videos on Leon Kilat and other Cebu heroes.

-We composed songs for him and produced an album named in his honor,  Abtik pas Kilat.

-Palm Grass led in forming the Bag-ong Teatro Junquera (in partnership with USJR, USC, UV, with the barangays Kalubihan, Kamagayan, Sta. Cruz, San Antonio, Cogon-Ramos) that produced the stage play, Abtik pas Kilat. Excerpts will be shown this afternoon.

-Today, we are also going to watch the short video interviews of Leon’s descendants in Bacong.


We are also honored to have with us today, a descendant of a clan of Cebu Katipuneros (the Abellas) — the great grandson of Katipunero Rufo Abella, lawyer Harve Abella, to speak about our hero. We are also glad that we have with us the candidates of the Ginoong Pilipinas Cebu who want to celebrate with us the birthday of our Cebu hero.


Our wish on this birthday of our hero would be that his heroism would become a guiding light to everyone in our country, in our journey towards a more just and prosperous society for everyone.


This July 31st, join us in another party at Palm Grass Hardin Dagami roofdeck bar to celebrate Leon at 146. Let us enjoy the rest of the afternoon. Once again, happy 146th birthday to our hero nga abtik pas kilat!


  From the Guivelondo family of Palm Grass Hotel