So last weekend was the Chale Wote Festival and as usual High Street saw floods of people parading through James Town to take selfies, express themselves, enjoy the art and entertainment artists had to offer and have a jolly good time. If there is anything that the Chale Wote festival teaches us, it is that Art is powerful social magnet.
I remember when the Chale Wote in 2011 started. I didn’t attend that year but the streets weren’t packed with people like I saw last weekend. It was the beginning of something great and like a baby, Chale Wote festival was just getting used to its feet.
Year after year the scale of the festival has just grown to become in my opinion the biggest festival in Ghana. Strangely enough other festivals and events, paid or free that have a track record still can’t attract the audience that Chale Wote attracts (well unless its a sports event or shata wake lol).
The Chale Wote festival and its organizers are not perfect but on the whole understand people better than most. So I ask myself this question, why can’t other festivals especially the cultural ones, fuse art into their events?
There is a lot to benefit from such fusion. First off you get people who aren’t attracted by culture to be interested in coming to the event.
Art within cultural festivals is a win win because it presents audiences with an opportunity to experience the beauty of Ghanaian culture that they may have been unaware of. They get to take their pictures with art and also see a side of Ghanaian culture that they never knew.
Tourism also has an opportunity here. Restaurants, bars, guest houses, hotels and the likes can make use of such festivals to increase business. The ministry of Tourism in my opinion should champion the cause to get something started. A lot of people travel to see the Chale Wote festival. What are the stats on this? How can we use it to improve festivals and tourism?
We are sitting on a lot of opportunity here that people are dying to see. All we have to do is infuse art with it and “kpakpakpa” you got success.
Keep it One Hondred!