Ogun Festival

Ogun festival is one of the major festivals done, not just in Idanre but in many parts of Yorubaland. The festival is done in remembrance of Ogun, who according to traditional religionists is the demiurge of iron and creativity.

It starts with the Owa’s (king) attendants who go to decorate “Umogun”, the shrine with fresh palm leaves. The Owa himself has a shrine known as “Ogun Eleri”, which he decorates with fresh palm leaves and at which an animal is sacrificed in worship of Ogun.

Chiefs who are qualified to dance during the Ogun festival, along with their retinue of dancers and attendants with drums parade colourfully around the town. On the third day of the festival, the Owa and other qualifying chiefs also dance through the town (called ijo Ogun) twice. They do this in order of seniority, from the lowest-ranking chiefs to the highest-ranking ones.

On the fourth day, the chiefs who danced around the town host their families and friends to feasts and the Owa also hosts a celebration feast at his palace. The feasts hosted by the chiefs is called “Ugba eeru” whilst the feast hosted by the king is called “Egedenmengbon”.

The Ogun festival, alongside the other major festivals in Idanre such as the Orosun and Olofin festivals are times during which the rich cultural heritage of Idanreland is often most on display.