Ilocano York is a blog about being and becoming an Ilocano in a foreign land, particularly New York. Its mission is to promote Ilocano heritage and cultural legacy in Filipino communities living abroad and to inspire other ethnicities to uphold their own. Starting out in New York, the dream is to reach out to as many Ilocanos and Filipinos abroad.

Ilocano York believes that what makes us Filipino are our different ethnicities. Collectively, we are the Filipino people but first, we are the sons and daughters of our respective cultural and linguistic regions. The richness of the Philippine culture is the sum of our linguistic, cultural differences and ethnicities: Ilocano, Cebuano, Tagalog, Kapampangan, Pangasinense, Ilongo, Waray, Batangueno, Maranao, Igorot, Bicolano, Ivatan, Ibanag, Moro, Sambal, Subanon, Visayan, Chabacanos, Badjao, Lumad, Mangyan, Negritos, Palawan, and other minor/major ethnic and linguistic groups I may have missed.

The reality is 10% of our population are outside the Philippines. These expats are constantly exposed to a multitude of cultural influences from the host nations that make cultural preservation challenging. So how does one stay Filipino in a foreign land? 

Napakahirap na layunin! Gayunpaman, naniniwala ang pahinang eto na saan mang lupalop ka ng mundo, anumang wika ang ginagamit mo, anumang pasaporte ang pinanghahawakan mo, ikaw ay mananatiling Pilipino basta’t nananalaytay sa’yo ang dugong (sa anumang bahagdan) pinag-alayan ng buhay ng mga bayani at kaanak mong Pilipino.


The Ilocano York mission, belief system, day-to-day immigrant experience, ethnic/linguistic/cultural/social upliftment, the search for freedom/expression/identity, and patriotism are recurring themes in this blog.

Contributions are welcome. Email Ilocano York at zipbytes@gmail.com.


  1. Firth McEachern says:

    Hi Manang Maricar,

    I work as a consultant on language rights, policy, and services in the Provincial Government of La Union (PGLU), which involves reinvigorating the Ilokano language and including in sectors in which it has been recently (and sometimes lengthily) marginalized.

    Would you please contact me so that I may know your email address and send a few progress reports or articles regarding the PGLU’s Ilokano advocacy that you may find interesting?

    Regards and look forward to your response!

  2. Merry Car says:

    Thanks so much, Ading.

  3. Maricar Tangonan says:

    Hi Firth,

    I read about your article on codeswitching/codemixing practices of the Filipinos and the possible language attrition that may result from it. My graduate school thesis was about Contact Linguistics that made use of linguistic data from native Ilocano speakers who were mixing Tagalog, English and Ilocano (yes, three and not just two) in casual conversation. Although my approach was more linguistic than anthropological, I arrived at some insights that might interest you.

  4. gloria says:

    Hi Ma’am/Ading Maricar,

    I was a Literature instructor in Urdaneta Community College(now Urdaneta City University)13 yrs. ago.I have been quadriplegic for almost 8 years. By God’s grace, I was able to write a book entitled ‘FLASHES” (with themes of love, faith and hope) where i included some Filipino and Ilokano poems and essays. My friends here and abroad love the Ilokano ones.
    Ading,please help me get these published. Many of these are amusing as i love to make people laugh.

  5. brian says:

    hi mar, i visited ur website about ilokano. im from leyte and i don’t speak ilocano but i appreciate your initiative on making an effort to preserve our precious dialect. This is very important specially for immigrants like us and others too who brought their kids and raise them here in states because they will tend to loose their own native language. This is not a good sign for us because in order to maintain our heritage, we need to preserve our language as well.
    I dont know if im making any sense now, 🙂 i just feel like typing so just ignore me . lol

  6. myra e says:

    ma’am maricar,

  7. myra e says:

    ma’am maricar,

    I am a communication instructor from a state university in ilocos and is currently working on a research about ilocano identity. i’ve been having trouble looking for a published material which can provide me a basis about the ilocano identity.
    What other ilocano identities are there aside from ilocano language and food?
    pls. help me.

    myra e

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