Not all Philippine attempts to enter the Guinness World Records (GWR) ended in recognition. And not all tries, whether landing inside or outside the prestigious records volume, happened in the Visayas and Luzon, or more specifically, the National Capital Region.
Mindanao, for its part, has so far recorded twenty-six (26) attempts, but a few did not make it due to the stiff price organizers have to shoulder in bringing adjudicators to the country and the overhead expenses needed to prepare the attempt to break a record.
Still, the attempts, good or bust, deserve a revisit, especially individual (single person or entry) feats. Let’s take a trip down memory lane.
In March 2014, Machir Malih Torrefiel, a professional cager from Davao Montana Pawnshop, expressed his desire to set a new Guinness world record for the multiple basketball dribbles and spins, his signature basketball calisthenics. As an athlete, he developed the human ladder dunk, a move where a player uses another person as a springboard to dunk, and once dribbled for 34 hours in a 2006 contest. The plan fell through for lack of sponsors to bring in Guinness officials to Davao City.
Born June 12, 1993, Junrey Balawing of Sindangan, Zamboanga del Norte, was recognized in the 2011 Guinness records as the world’s shortest man alive at 59.93 cm (23.59 in) tall, breaking the record of Khagendra Thapa Magar of Nepal who was 0.67 m (2 ft 2 1⁄3 in) tall.
A woman from Gen. Santos City eyed the GWR nod for the most number of grandchildren at 244. As of November 2011, Bai Ulan-Ulan Kudanding, 102 years old, beat out her townmate, 94-year-old Joaquina Batiller, with 160 grandchildren. From her 14 children, Bai has 107 grandkids, 135 great-grandkids and two great-great-grandkids. One of her daughters, Marawiya, has 19 children. She broke the record held by a couple from United Kingdom with 99 grandchildren.
The world’s heaviest mango in the GWR weighs 3.435 kgs (7.57 lbs). It was presented by Sergio and Maria Socorro Bodiongan of Cagayan de Oro City during the Sundayag celebration held on Aug. 27, 2009. The fruit, of Florida Keitt variety, measured 30.48 cm (12 in) in length, 49.53 cm (19.5 in) in circumference and 17.78 cm (7 in) in width.
The GWR reported in 1987 a pineapple (Ananas comosus) weighing 7.95 kgs (17.5 lbs) was harvested by Dole Philippines, Inc. at South Cotabato in November 1984. Known for its trademark sunrise logo, Dole (Phils.) is the world’s largest pineapple producer. Its canned fruits come primarily from its Polomoloc, South Cotabato plantation, one of the world’s largest.
Started in 2005, the 85.5-m long rosary found on the grounds of Christ the King Cathedral, in Tagum City, is made of magkono (ironwood) beads sourced from Davao Oriental and Surigao del Sur. It has a total weight of 2,815 kgs with each bead weighing 35 kgs. It took seven years to finish the project. It was reportedly recognized by Guinness recordsin 2012 as the “largest Roman Catholic rosary in the world.”
And, on Jan. 1, 2010, the GWR declared the Monfort Bat Colony in the Island Garden City of Samal, the world’s largest colony of fruit bat of Geoffrey’s Rousette (Rousetteus amplexicaudatus). Estimates from the Bat Conservation International in 2006 placed the bat population here at roughly 1.8 million. The bats line the walls and ceiling at an average of 60 per square foot.