When De La Salle University won its first ever General Championship in UAAP Season 75, most students expected a celebration much like Ateneo’s Bonfire tradition, although such a celebration did not materialize for a myriad of reasons.
Organizers for DLSU’s GC celebration have stated that they remain passionate to protect the environment, since gatherings involving fire may raise health concerns because of the release of toxins and gases through emitted smoke.
The Bonfire has been an ADMU tradition for five years now, to celebrate the five consecutive basketball championships of its team, the Blue Eagles. It also serves as a mass gathering of alumni, students, and fans on the school’s grounds.
La Salle decided to celebrate their first ever General Championship with a thanksgiving night instead. The University held a mass, a variety show with an 80’s theme, and a concert with special alumni guests.
But thanks to several alumni, the question of “Why was there no bonfire?” was still raised. Was it because La Salle did not want to copy a tradition of its old rival, or was it something else?
Paps Rebellon (III, MKT) thinks that the organizers did not want to continue with the bonfire because they wanted to be different, or in his words “Siguro ayaw nila gayahin ‘yung usually ginagawa ng kabila every year.”
Another student, Bernardino Ocarino (II, LIM) argues that DLSU is known for its environment-friendly policies inside the walls of the University, such as CLAYGO (Clean As You Go) and the separation of the garbage bins.
Moreover, the grounds and location of the University were also taken into consideration. La Salle no longer has a football field after the Henry Sy Sr. Hall (HSSH) was completed last year, unlike the benchmark ADMU which has an expansive Bellarmine field for its bonfire.
Nico Moreno, an environmental specialist from PAGASA, states that should a bonfire be held beside Taft Avenue, the ash and the smoke would cloud the line of vision of passing motorists. The risk of buildings catching fire and spreading to neighboring structures was also noted when the school decided to forgo having a bonfire.