ABU DHABI: Ramadan nights will come alive at Breakwater Corniche with the 13th Ramadan Festival commencing here on May 20. Organised by the Emirates Heritage Club (EHC) the free event, running for 16 days, will consist of traditional handicrafts, local food, Quran competitions, games and loads of prizes.
Spread over the Heritage Village, National Theatre and adjoining areas, the festival has been a major crowd puller for various nationalities over the years. In lieu with the Year of Zayed, special seminars on the founding father will be conducted this year.
“Every year we try to improve and provide new attractions,” said Rashid Al Qubaisi, marketing manager of EHC. “We want to uphold the cultural values of this great nation and embody the true spirit of hospitality and harmony during Ramadan.”
Spirit of the season
Held under the patronage of Shaikh Sultan bin Zayed Al Nahyan, the festival aims to establish EHC’s main agenda of preserving the values, customs and traditions associated with important events and seasons of the local community.
From traditional handlooms, food tents, dance performances, glass making and basket weaving; visitors will get to experience the rich cultural history of the country upfront.
“In the context of Ramadan, we want to highlight the tolerant message of Islam and the effects of the virtues of this month, in the hearts of Muslims and non-Muslims alike. We welcome thousands of people every day and each person goes back home with a fond memory or a new piece of information (about UAE’s heritage). Over the years, we have managed to attract more young people and indulge them in deeper cultural and cognitive experiences,” said Al Qubaisi.
The Quran competitions continue to be a main highlight of the festival, attracting hordes of entries from young and old and different nationalities. “We want to encourage people to improve their recitation and memorisation. Different nationalities may have different recitation styles but they help to build bridges of communication and spirituality among the public,” said Al Qubaisi. Winners get to walk away with cash prizes including a grand prize of Dh15,000. The event will also feature several Islamic lectures by special guests.
Special seminars on Shaikh Zayed will be conducted on the 8th and 19th of Ramadan.
The festive events will be conducted at the Heritage Village whereas the seminars and Quran competitions will be held at the National Theatre.
What: 13th Ramadan Festival
Where: Breakwater, Corniche
When: May 20 to June 4