Onwasato Festival

Onwasato Festival

August
Observed by the Igbo people of Nigeria, the Onwasato Festival marks the beginning of the harvest season and is celebrated by feasting on the new crops, particularly yams. The highlight of the festival is the thanksgiving ritual in which the senior member of each family kills a fowl in the Obu (the father's sitting-house), sprinkles the blood on the Okpensi (the family symbol), and gives thanks to the family's ancestors. The feathers are then removed and scattered on the threshold of the compound—a sign that the people have forsaken all evil for the coming season. Of all the many fowl that are killed, one is roasted and set aside, while the others are used for the first day's feasting. On the second day of the festival, all the members of the extended family meet in the senior member's Obu and share the fowl that has been set aside in a ritual known as the "handing round of fowl," or Inya Okuku .
SOURCES:
FolkWrldHol-1999, p. 536
(c)