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Thanksgiving Day



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Harvest Festivals

Harvest Festivals from Around the World

    Nigerian Harvest Festival

    In Nigeria one festival that is held is the Argungu fishing festival, held for several days during the months of February and March near Sokoto.

    The festival marks the end of the growing season and the time for harvest. A one mile stretch of the Argungu River is protected throughout the year, so that the fish will be plentiful for this 45-minute fishing frenzy that is done to mark this festival and men fight each other for the fish once the allotted time is over the fish that is biggest is offered to the organizers. Also there are canoe races and diving competitions that go on as well.

    Another festival that is a kind of Harvest festival is the Benin Festival which is held at the end of the rainy season after the harvests have already been gathered. This festival also serves another purpose as the eligible young men and women of the village are displayed before each other to be able to get acquainted with each other.

    The Benin festival occurs every four years but only for those who are wealthy and can afford to be matched with another person. The villagers may join in the festival atmosphere only.

    In the past, the girls who took part in the festival traditionally wore no clothing, but in modern times, because nudity is frowned upon, they are clothed.

    Both boys and girls have elaborate markings painted on their bodies. The boys also take part in a tug- of-war as a demonstration of their strength.

    Another August celebration is the "Onwasato Festival" observed by the Igbo people of Nigeria. The Onwasato Festival also marks the beginning of the harvest season and is celebrated by thanksgiving and feasting on the new crops, especially yams.



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