As I recover from part one of celebrating Naija’s Independence this past weekend, I still wish you all a Happy Independence Day because as far as I am concerned the festivities do not end till this weekend passes. In true Naija fashion the party won’t stop till we’re good and ready to give it a rest. Plus 50 years are not easy so here’s to the next 50! Cheers!
As some of you may or may not know, this Saturday, October 9th, is the annual Naija Independence Day Parade in New York City. The parade will start from 54th street on 2nd avenue to 44th street in front of the Nigerian House in Manhattan. Then from 2pm to 6pm a street festival and concert will be held at the Dag Hammarskjold Park on 47th street also in Manhattan.
For the past five years I’ve made an effort to go to the parade and celebrate with other Nigerians from literally all over. It’s really a sight to see, floats from different organizations blasting modern and classic Naija music, flags waving from side to side and sea of thousands of people sporting their green white green combinations. It’s enough to make you proud. Very proud…but then you witness some things that will just make you wonder about your people. In light of this, I’ve compiled a list of things to do AND not do at the PARADE to make sure you have a wonderful time.
2. If you do plan on protesting…DO NOT START A RIOT. You’re spoiling the experience for everyone. Trust me I’ve seen plenty of protestors use violence to make a point. NEWS FLASH: It never works. Plus the police are always looking for a reason to show themselves so respect yourself and those around you.
3. Unless you’ve been denying the fact that you’re Nigerian and claiming some other nationality (perhaps Jamo), DO BRING YOUR NON-NIGERIAN FRIENDS ALONG. Trust me they’ll enjoy themselves, especially the food.
4. The music is and will always be on point at the parade. I encourage you to get your groove on but abeg DO NOT BUMP AND GRIND there. It’s a family friendly event with kids around so save all the gyrations for the after party!
8. DO NOT OVERDO IT LADIES (or should I say Aunties?) Honestly this kind of event doesn’t really call for this kind of attire but if you want to look sexy, I assure you this is not the way to do it. (P.S I’ll give someone $20 if they can guess who that woman is in the background to the right)
9. Ladies and gents if you don’t feel like dealing with the stress of trying to figure out how you will rock your green and white color combination DO WEAR NATIVE. It never fails! If both options don’t work for you, then wear whatever you want.
See you on the avenue. Till then…