#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 20th, 2017 as part of the activities for its 50th anniversary.

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

  • 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.
  • The first procession in Lagos was on the 20th of  February, 1854, to  commemorate the life of the Oba Akintoye
  • The Eyo masquerades 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).
  • 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 .
  • 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.
  • Certain activities/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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