During the beginning, the Giant Lantern Festival was more of a religious ceremony by the name of Lubenas which was also popularly called as Ligligan Parul. To celebrate the ninth day of Christmas, a public procession used to be held in which participants would carry twelve lanterns, each of them signifying a particular apostle. However, during the 1930s, the first official Giant Lantern Festivals was held in honour of the Philippines President, Manuel L. Quezon. Since then, it is being celebrated in a similar manner.
Being the capital of the Pampanga province, San Fernando is an important economic centre of the country. Almost all types of important institutions in ample numbers are available here so that it is also a very busy city. In recent times, the skyline of the city has been dominated by some of the best malls that have entered the business. Robinsons Starmills and SM City Pampanga are some of the best-known malls in the city that are frequented by a lot of people daily and form an important part of its economic landscape.