The first edition of the Escudo Rojo
Carnival took place yesterday at the famous Oke-Arin market in the busy
open market district of Lagos Island, entertaining traders, shoppers,
bystanders, and commuters stuck in the Lagos traffic with a colorful
display of dance, circus performances, and music. Tourists, shop-owners,
guests, and participants defied the sunny harmattan weather to revel in
the sheer novelty of a roving carnival, as the carnival train snaked it
was through Isah Williams Street, Ofin Road, and the famous Tinubu Square
– the highlight of the carnival was when the charismatic Nigerian musician
W4 (often described as the great Fela’s incarnate), took the stage to
perform his chart-topping hit single “ wa gba control”, literally causing
a huge traffic in front of the UBA Building in Marina, as hordes of
passersby and commercial bus drivers paused in their strides to enjoy the
electrifying performance.

Thomas Frotte, the Export Manager of Baron Philippe de Rothschild,
proprietors of the Escudo Rojo wine brand described the carnival
experience as magical saying, “ Escudo Rojo is not our brand anymore, it
is the Nigerian people’s brand, we just planned this carnival to let the
market people of Lagos have a good time towards Christmas, but what they
did was they took over the carnival and made us have a good time – they
copiously displayed cartons of Escudo Rojo wine in front of their shops,
decorated their shops in our colors – they made us understand that the
Nigerian people drink the wine and they love it, so they were happy to
host us, and we just had a great time together, and I must add – this is
the biggest event we’ve had in Nigeria”

It wasn’t just a fun galore all the way, as almost everyone who joined in
the fanfare received a gift from the Escudo Rojo team. T-shirts, hats, and
bottles of wine were given away during the various dance competitions, and
raffle draws in the market. According to Alex Kothoor of GDN Nigeria, the
essence of hosting the carnival in the open market was simply to show the
brand’s appreciation to the dedicated traders, and to express Escudo
Rojo’s commitment and affinity to its trade partners and consumers.

“wine is meant to be shared, not to be enjoyed alone” Thomas Frotte
quipped, “and in that spirit, we’re sharing our wine, along with our
spirit of fun and love with Nigerians this season, and going by the
success of this carnival, I’m positive we’ll do another one next year
around this same time.”

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