Bole Festival: Finally Port Harcourt Comes Of Age

By Ikenga Chronicles August 5, 2018

Bole Festival: Finally Port Harcourt Comes Of Age

Port Harcourt has always been like that child with enormous promise, but who never comes around to fulfilling his or her potential. At best, the city, as far as the entertainment industry is concerned, was like twenty-first century Arsenal FC—get so close to the finish line, make a detour, and start at the beginning.

Bole Festival 2018

So for years, a city ranked almost on the same level with Lagos and Abuja, has continued to “play with the tip” when it comes to entertainment, and at best, serve as the “Feeder team”(Arsenal FC comes to mind again), to Lagos. The examples of Timaya and Burnaboy prove the Feeder Team analogy, and the many others(Waconzy, Frank De Niro,Sky B, etc) who come to mind, are proofs of getting almost to the finish line, making a detour, and fading into obscurity. The city at best grooms super stars and because it has refused to build its entertainment industry, loses them to the glitz and glamour of say a Lagos, or at worst, freezes the growth of its children. That is why many artistes from Port Harcourt after years of struggle either give up, or ultimately dump the city.

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Bole Festival 2018

Traffic gridlock at Eliozu road because of the Bole Festival 2018

Saturday, August the 4th was however emblematic for Port Harcourt. While it was not the first edition of “Bole Festival”, the message this year’s edition of “Bole Festival” brought was that if enough dedication and spirit is shown, the entertainment industry in Port Harcourt can finally begin to rival Lagos. This year’s turnout, while far exceeding that of the first edition’s, concretized something; all Port Harcourt needs is to be Port Harcourt and project her own ways of life(not be a Lagos wannabe).

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Bole Festival 2018

Bole(one of the most popular foods in Port Harcourt), is symbolic of all that is unique about Port Harcourt and thus the festival, named after it, yearly brings an opportunity for entrepreneurs to make money, people to socialize, people to get entertained(and by extension an opportunity for people to not only fraternize, but also display their talents).Bole Festival is not just a festival, it is a mini-carnival which if built upon(devoid of political colouration, which is the main bane of Rivers State),will become the signature carnival of Rivers state,complete with its trappings of opportunities,fun, socialization, and cultural promotion. What immediately jumps out from the success of the festival is that for Port Harcourt, fun, mixed with growth opportunities, and good food, is what entertainment is about. And with Bole Festival, it seems that finally, the city has found its path and may now finally take the final step towards actualizing all of its entertainment potentials.

Bole and fish, one of the most popular foods in Rivers State

Bole Festival 2018

Already, the festival has inspired so many other gatherings and have even motivated recording artistes to start holding concerts in Port Harcourt. Coming at a time when Duncan Mighty and the ever unique Bukwild Da Ikwerrian have begun to take the Ikwerre language(with a mixture of uniquely Port Harcourt slangs) to the nation, plus Adure TV setting up what is arguably the most organized Online TV station in the South South, in the city, Port Harcourt is finally ready to be the entertainment city it was destined to be.

What remains, is for consistency, anchored on projecting what is uniquely Rivers, i7s maintained, and for both the corporate and governmental bodies, to key in.

 

Photo Credit: A million thanks to Burabari Nwilo and Ahmed for the pictures used here.

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