Artists perform during the Sharjah Events festival.
Gulf Today, Staff Reporter
Curtains came down on a vibrant, fun-fuelled extravaganza as the inaugural edition of the Sharjah Events Festival attracted more than 15,000 residents and visitors who flocked to Al Majaz Amphitheatre over the course of two days to experience an open-air carnival featuring an exciting mix of live music, traditional dancing, roaming parades, lively competitions, and plenty of creative and edutainment fun activities.
The two-day festival, which brought together more than 25 public and private entities in Sharjah, hosted 150 entertainment and cultural activities including hands-on workshops, art and science-based activities, live cooking demonstrations, adrenalin-packed adventure sports, and more.
The free-to-attend event, brought the spectacular outdoor areas and halls of the Al Majaz Amphitheatre alive as creative artists, performers, musicians, and sportspersons led visitors of all age groups on an exciting merrymaking journey where gigantic air-balloons in the shapes of mythical creatures, acrobatic shows, clowns, drummers, and stilt walkers transformed the picturesque venue into a festive paradise. From hammocks scattered across the venue to the magical experience of swinging through sheets of flowing water without getting wet, visitors at the festival enjoyed a unique, fun-filled family experience.
Emirati women make traditional clothes during the festival.
Organised by Sharjah Events, an initiative of the Sharjah Government Media Bureau (SGMB), under the slogan #SeeSharjah, the two-day event brought laughter and joy to every visitor as young children and parents delighted in the antics of a clown and followed a trail of small and big bubbles with a skilled bubbles artist.
Visitors of all age groups enjoyed a game of outdoor chess with large-sized pieces, tic-tac-toe, and a round of mini golf, in addition to a fun treasure hunt challenge, and other sports-based competitions where winners walked home with valuable prizes. In a more quiet corner, a giant screen offered visitors a relaxing outdoor cinemtic experience with a selection of shorts, animations and feature films to enjoy in the comfort of purple and green beanbags.
Visitors also partook in an impressive choice of performances by traditional bands, theatrical shows, poetry sessions, musical performances by young, aspiring stars, and gained a peek into Sharjah’ s history at the Museums Express.
While the outdoor grounds of the festival venue resonated with the sounds and laughter of children, the inside halls were home to many workshops led by experts, trainers, and specialists and focused on child-related topics, and honing of both personal and professional skills.
Commenting on the festival’s activities, Tariq Saeed Allay, Director General of SGMB, said: “The debut Sharjah Events Festival has fulfilled its goal of establishing direct communication and forging strong connections with the public whose interests we serve. The high footfall of visitors and their engagement with the plethora of activities offered by the public and private entities has sealed the success of this family-friendly event. The festival also aligns with the overarching vision of the emirate’s inclusive cultural development, taken forward under the directives and guidance of His Highness Dr Sheikh Sultan Bin Mohammed Al Qasimi, Member of the Supreme Council and Ruler of Sharjah.”
The SGMB Director added: “The festival offered a platform to showcase the diverse and culturally enriching local and international events organised by entities in the emirate that are a staple on Sharjah’s annual calendar of events, and which are highlighted on the Sharjah Events website. The two-day festival also served as an open space to enlighten residents and tourists on the programmes and events of these entities in an interactive, family-friendly environment.”
The first-ever Sharjah Events Festival witnessed the launch of Sharjah’s 2022 calendar of events which encompass all year-long activities organised by the emirate’s entities in various sectors, including culture, economy, science, heritage, sports, arts, and entertainment.
The list of entities participating in the festival included the Supreme Council for Family Affairs, Sharjah Police, Sharjah Investment and Development Authority (Shurooq), Sharjah Book Authority, Sharjah Media City (Shams), University of Sharjah, Sharjah Institute for Heritage, Sharjah Electricity, Water and Gas Authority.
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