DAVAO CITY, Philippines — It was a parade of colors as delegates from all over Davao region proudly bannered their respective teams during the opening ceremony of the Davao Regional Athletic Association Meet 2018 (DAVRAA) on Sunday, February 18.

The atmosphere became even more vibrant and exciting as boxing legend and Senator Manny Pacquiao himself spoke in front of more than 7,000 delegates from five provinces and six cities at the University of Mindanao’s sports complex here.

Davao City officials said this ​wa​s a comeback for the city in hosting sporting events since it has been years the city hosted such​ activity.​

Here are some photo highlights during the opening ceremony:

MARCH ON. Young athletes from Compostela Valley province hold their hats as they march during the parade. (Mark Joy G. Basallajes / davaotoday.com)

HOST CITY. Flag bearers from different schools lead the delegation of Davao City. (Robby Joy D. Salveron / davaotoday.com)

CULTURE. Delegates from the province of Davao del Norte wear traditional clothes to represent the province’s rich culture. (Robby Joy D. Salveron / davaotoday.com)

YOUNG ATHLETES. Grade schoolers carry the banner of the Davao del Norte delegation. (Robby Joy D. Salveron / davaotoday.com)

DAVNOR PIONEERS. The Davao del Norte Pioneers carry with them props and banners of the different municipalities as they enter the track oval. (Robby Joy D. Salveron / davaotoday.com)

SALUTE. Athletes from Davao Occidental salute as they sing their provincial hymn (Mark Joy G. Basallajes / davaotoday.com)

SLASHERS. Kids from Davao Occidental raise their fists with pompoms. This is their first time to join the DAVRAA Meet as a recently created province.(Mark Joy G. Basallajes / davaotoday.com)

WAVING FLAGS. Davao del Sur delegates wave their flaglets during their performance.(Mark Joy G. Basallajes / davaotoday.com)

DAVOR REPRESENT. Delegates from Davao Oriental Sunrisers (Robby Joy D. Salveron / davaotoday.com)

COACHES. Coaches from Digos City (Robby Joy D. Salveron / davaotoday.com)

EAGLES. A young athelete from Mati City spreads her arms symbolizing a flying eagle to represent the name of their delegation, the eagles. (Robby Joy D. Salveron / davaotoday.com)

PEOPLE’S CHAMP. Boxing legend and Senator Manny Pacquiao delivers his speech during the opening ceremony of DAVRAA 2018.(Robby Joy D. Salveron / davaotoday.com)

DAB. Delegates from Panabo City dab during their presentation.(Robby Joy D. Salveron / davaotoday.com)

BANANA MASCOT. A banana mascot leads the delegation of the Panabo City Banana Magnates.(Robby Joy D. Salveron / davaotoday.com)

WAVES. A sea of blue delegates from the Island Garden City of Samal (Robby Joy D. Salveron / davaotoday.com)

HATS OFF. Tagum Tagumpay delegates(Robby Joy D. Salveron / davaotoday.com)

STAR ATHLETE. Ranel Bantilan, ​G​rade 12 swimmer from Davao del Sur ​i​s among the torch bearers despite his disability. (Mark Joy G. Basallajes / davaotoday.com)

TORCH BEARERS. Athletes from different divisions in the region talk before they light up torches. (Mark Joy G. Basallajes / davaotoday.com)

TORCH. Mikey Aportadera, head of the City Sports Development Division passes the torch to grade 12 student athlete Ranel Bantilan (Mark Joy G. Basallales / davaotoday.com)

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