If you have followed my work for a while now, you will have noticed that I am a proud Kwahu. Last weekend I went home for the Kwahu Easter Festival with a couple of my friends from MEST Africa. That was the first time I was in Kwahu for the Easter festival since 2013 and I must say that a lot of things has changed.
In this note I talk about some of the things I liked and those I think could be improved;
1. Local tourism boomed
My key highlight is the fact that the tourism aspect of the festival is gradually growing, and this is beyond the paragliding activities which according to GTA had about 400 participants.
I went to two sites and the patronage was encouraging, especially Nkofieho cave in Twenedurase, the numbers there were massive. I think going forward a lot more effort should be put into marketing other tourist sites in Kwahu during the festival to attract a lot more participants.
2. Kwahu State Book launch did the magic
The launch of the Kwahu State Book which was strategically scheduled during the Easter festival was a great one, bringing dignitaries to experience Kwahu Easter. It was also an opportunity to showcase the rich Kwahu culture to the world.
3. Kwahu Dwaso was the official souvenir market
The pop-up market at Mpraeso, ‘Kwahu Dwaso’ was a great idea for people who wanted souvenirs from the festival and I like the fact that there was a diverse catalog to buy from but I think an additional division for only food, that is local food will be a great one: a place during the festival where one caeemn taste and buy local food from Kwahu.
4. Brands beyond beverages didn’t really tap into the festival
There were a lot of street carnivals. For people who love loud music, this was a great festival and there were a lot of brand activations for beverages. I think a lot more people come to Kwahu during easter and brands and marketers must tap into that, it will be a great place to put your brand in the faces of people.
5. Ghana Police wasn’t only promoting peace but marketing the force as an ideal professional option
The visibility of Ghana Police during the festival was noticeable, they were at every junction literally, and the IGP was also there. one thing I found very innovative was the Police stand at Mpraeso where people could go and learn about the police force and even try on some of their uniforms. When I was there a parent walked in with his daughter enquiring about how one could join the force and I would say that that festival really marketed the Ghana Police force as an ideal professional option.
I personally wish a lot more professional associations/groups could adopt that and also market their role during the festival or even go further to organize career forums during the day for the youth.
6. The celebration was decentralized
I went to about 6 towns. The previous Easter festival had most of the activities only at Obemeng, Atibie, and Mpreaso. But this year it was decentralized. There were pockets of activities across various towns, in Nkwatia, Rock City was buzzing, in Twenedurase caves were busy and in Tafo the food joints near the waterfalls were very busy.
7. Kwahus are hospitable people
I know Kwahus are hospitable people not just because I am a Kwahu but because I experienced it. I lost my luggage on Friday when I got to Nkawkaw from Accra. I joined a bus to Nkawtia and had to alight because the fare the driver quoted was outrageous for me and in the process, I forgot my luggage while the bus took off. It was only after about 10 minutes had passed that I realized that I didn’t have my luggage
My Friends and I tried to chase down the bus driver in a taxi and when we got to Atibie we had to walk/jog all the way to Mpreaso because the traffic wasn’t moving fast enough. We weren’t able to find the driver that night and when we got home without my luggage I was sad because my bag had my camera, ID cards, wallet and clothes for the festival.
The next morning I joined a taxi to Nkawkaw new station in search of the driver, the only details I could remember about the car and the driver was;
- The Driver was a little bit old in his early 50s or late 40s
- The bus was a white 16 seater Toyota (but yeah there were a lot of these buses during the festival
- The bus took off to Nkwatia around 8:30 pm
Upon reaching Nkawkaw new station, the support I got from the driver community there was beyond my expectations. I was blown away by how the drivers gave me the attention I needed, listened to me willingly, and offered to help without asking for anything in return.
In the process, we called about 4 different drivers with the same bus description, and finally, I found the driver. He was at Obemeng and he confirmed that my luggage was in his car and was safe. I joined a taxi that was headed to Obemong and retrieved my luggage. I was very overjoyed and thankful to God. Then I switch back to party mode for the festival.
In all I had a lot of fun, I met a number of my seniors from JHS, created new memories which will live with me forever and I can’t wait for next year’s Kwahu Easter Festival.
Kwahu ooo Kwahu! #VisitKwahu