The strength of a community lies in its heritage, thus the need to preserve and sustain; the people of the ancient city of Ilaro in Yewaland, in their resolve not to neglect what makes up the very fabric of their society created this one of a kind festival–Oronna festival. Oronna was the mythological hero of Ilaro who distinguished himself in battles against the Dahomeans who were a scourge to the area. He promised that even after his death if any war should come against Ilaro, his people should call him at his shrine, where he is said to have disappeared in the earth leaving a long chain tied around his waist.
Oronna Ilaro festival is an annual festival primarily conceived to preserve, uphold and celebrate the rich cultural heritage of Ilaro.
This socio cultural festival whose cultural antecedence has placed Ilaro on the map of the world. It was officially inaugurated in1992. Other vision is to bring together annually all the sons and daughters of Ilaro within and outside the Diaspora with a view to reminding and instilling in them the spirit of brotherhood and having a sense of belonging towards promoting the rich cultural heritage of Ilaro land.
On May 24, 1992 when the first Oronna day central planning committee was inaugurated it was headed by the late Prof. Afolabi Olabuntan highly referred scholar and elder statesman.
This committee was also saddled with the mandate to make Ilaro and Yewa land the most secure and conducive community in the whole country in terms of infrastructure, social amenities, enabling business environment and human resources.
Oronna Ilaro festival is a week long program, featuring all aspect of Ilaro culture, traditional and social life. As a mark of communal bound that was established two (2) decades ago, the descendants of Ilaro will gather again for all over the world to celebrate one of the largest cultural festival in south west region of Nigeria.
Over the years, this festival in its unique colors and splendors has drawn thousands of sons and daughters of Ilaro. Traditional cultural enthusiasts and international tourist from both inside and outside the country.
Oronna Ilaro festival, with its status has beyond doubts become a major tourist attraction and destination for all in Nigeria and around the world.