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#LagosAt50: Six facts you should know about Eyo Festival....

Ever seen the white Lagos masquerades, known as the Eyo masquerades? If you haven’t, here’s your chance to see and learn more about the Yoruba festival indigenous to Lagos state.

The Eyo festival also known as the Adamu Orisa will be celebrated this Saturday, May 20, 2017 as part of the activities for its 50th anniversary.

For anyone planning to attend the free event, here are six important facts to note:

What started the festival back in the day

In ancient times, the Eyo festival was held to escort souls of the departed King of Lagos/Chief, or to usher in a new King.



Eyo masquerades


First edition

The first procession in Lagos was on February 20, 1854, to commemorate the life of Oba Akintoye.



The Eyo masquerades

They are costumed dancers who represent the spirit of the dead and are referred to in Yoruba as ‘Agogoro’, they come out during the festival dressed in white regalia and carrying white staff (opambata).



Eyo
Masquerades at TBS


What happens

On Eyo day, the main highway in the heart of Lagos from the end of Carter bridge to Tinubu square is closed to traffic , this allows procession from Idumota to the Iga Iduganan palace.



Significance

Eyo festival, which is now held mostly as a tourist event, has become one of the foremost Festivals in Nigeria and it is also the cultural monument of Lagos.



The Eyo festival remains one of Lagos’ most popular attractions


Some things you can’t do during the festival

Certain activities and items like Shuku hairstyle, smoking, riding of bicycles and okada, headgear (for men and women), photographs and selfies are forbidden for attendees during the Eyo Festival.

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