Sharjah: The 19th edition of Sharjah Heritage Days (SHD) begins on March 10 and will continue until March 28 in Sharjah’s heritage area. The event will allow visitors a unique opportunity to experience food, clothing, handicraft, dances and other traditional fare from the UAE and around the world.
Details of the event were announced during a press conference held at Sharjah’s heritage area on Thursday, which was addressed by Dr Abdulaziz Al Musallam, Chairman of Sharjah Institute for Heritage, and Chairman of the Higher Organising Committee of Sharjah Heritage Days. Al Musallam revealed that 33 countries will be participating in the 19-day event. Moreover, 28 government entities from the UAE will also participate in the event.
The activities to start from March10 to March 28.
Themed ‘Heritage and the Future’ and organised by Sharjah Institute for Heritage (SIH), the largest and longest celebration of local and global cultures in the UAE and the region, will have Armenia as the guest of honour, while Indonesia will be a distinguished guest.
The three-week festival will be open to visitors from 4pm-10pm on weekdays and until midnight on weekends.
The Higher Committee has announced that 19 precautionary measures are in place to safeguard the health and safety of visitors and participants. There will be two entry and exit gates equipped with thermal scanners, safety instruction signs and posters. There will also be a clinic and daily sterilisation drives at the venue.
The Press conference was also attended by Khalid Jassim Al Midfa, Chairman of the Sharjah Commerce and Tourism Development Authority, Rashid Abdullah Al Obaid, Director of the Sharjah Radio and Television Authority, and Abu Bakr Al Kindi, General Coordinator
Dr Al Musallam said: “The idea of organising the days annually is based on the directives of His Highness Dr Sheikh Sultan bin Muhammad Al Qasimi, Member of the Supreme Council and Ruler of Sharjah, who emphasised that heritage history reinforces national affiliations and this event represents a revival of memory and paves the way for a prosperous future.
Activities at a glance:
The Book Market: The Koutoubia Market, which is among the distinctive additions to this course, was inspired by the Azbakeya Market in Egypt, the Koutoubia Avenue in Tunisia and the Koutoubia shops in Morocco, by selling old books and modern books of old editions and bookbinding, restoring and sewing of books at the same location in which they will be held. There will also be the ‘Kotbien’ cafe.
Championships and technical teams: There will be 29 artistic bands from countries around the world, including teams of communities residing in the UAE. Tournaments will include the Tibra Sports Challenge and the fifth Gulf Al-Dama Championship.
Exhibitions and cultural programmes: The events will include four main exhibitions and 21 cultural programs, represented by the ‘Six Columns’. There will be exhibitions called ‘Fifty Years of Sultan’s Reign’ and ‘Traditional Crafts from Lithuania’. Cultural programmes and Arab Heritage Center programmes will include four workshops and three events involving 26 participants from 17 countries.
Academic Programme: There will be 61 programmes, including educational programmes, manuscript workshops, heritage library workshops and three different exhibitions.
Various events and publications: In its new session, the Sharjah Heritage Days will witness the organisation of various programmes and events, including 18 cultural lectures at the ‘Cultural Cafe’ and include new approaches, revealing the importance of cultural heritage and civilisational communication between nations and people, in addition to academic programmes, lectures, storytelling and various workshops on Emirati crafts.
The events will be accompanied by publications of more than 20 titles, which have been identified in line with the slogan “Al-Ayyam” in this session, while the number of heritage publications will reach 11, in addition to a special issue of the Maward magazine.
At the Kasbah Square market for old and used books, eight local publishing houses will participate, namely: Al Qasimi Publications, the Houses of Folk Heritage, Nabati, Kalmen and Al Mohet, in addition to the Golden Book and Mirrors houses and ‘Sadaqat’.
Emirati crafts and programmes for children: The Emirati Craft Center will include 14 traditional crafts and professions, 15 craft and planting workshops, in addition to traditional puzzles on the social media platforms and popular cookery show hosted by a number of participants from inside as well as outside the country. The Children’s Village will offer nine daily workshops, as well as various programmes and competitions for children, in addition to ten workshops for storytellers, children’s theatre and popular games.