Before the Sinulog sa Barangay became one of the activities of the Sinulog Festival, there was the Sinulog sa Kabataan. This was a school-based event where students from different public schools in Cebu were given the chance to dance for the Sto. Niño. But, this event was canceled since preparations for the event disrupted classes since the students who participated in the event would stay after school to practice. The practices would disturb night classes in the schools. Another reason for the cancellation was the expenses the schools incurred in preparing for the event. But, the event was replaced with the community-based Sinulog sa Barangay.
The Sinulog Festival in 2017 marked the first time the Sinulog sa Barangay was held. A number of barangays in Cebu City joined the event, including Barangay Labangon, Barangay Basak San Nicolas, and Barangay Guadalupe, among others. The event also served as a test run for the Sinulog Grand Parade. While rain was noted during the first Sinulog sa Barangay, the organizers considered the event a success. All barangays that participated in the Sinulog sa Barangay were asked to join the grand parade.
Lumad Basakanon won the street dancing category of the Sinulog sa Barangay while Banay Labangon came in second place. The ritual showdown category saw the two barangays changing paces with Banay Labangon coming in first and Lumad Basakanon placing second. Banay Labangon also won in the musicality category of the event while Lumad Basakanon won the best in costume.