The cultural activities include traditional dances, folkloric songs, operettas, games, plays and a fashion show. (SPA)
Saudi Arabia’s General Authority of Civil Aviation celebrated Eid Al-Fitr by holding many relevant events and activities at the Kingdom’s airports
RIYADH: Riyadh municipality concluded its Eid Al-Fitr celebrations at the King Salman Social Center with a myriad of cultural activities that included traditional dances, folkloric songs, operettas, games, plays and a fashion show.
One such play was presented by female students from Princess Nourah bint Abdul Rahman University and King Saud University, who performed “Musarqaah,” a production that addresses social issues in a comic context.
Students from Princess Nourah University also performed a traditional Japanese umbrella show.
Yemen’s consulate presented various shows, including one that highlighted the country’s ceremonial customs and traditions of women. The consulate also featured a clothes and trinkets pavilion, as well as a fashion show.
Dr. Samah Riadh Malhu, the Yemeni Foreign Ministry’s diplomatic attache, said the women’s department at the consulate performed three types of folkloric dances, hosted a clothes and crafts pavilion, and showcased heritage products such as incense.
Sudan also took part with a number of shows, most notably a wedding procession and Sudanese dances.
The celebrations concluded by announcing the winners of a contest for the best Eid greeting message, an effort to show appreciation for the brave soldiers on duty at the southern borders.
Eid with passengers
Saudi Arabia’s General Authority of Civil Aviation (GACA) celebrated Eid Al-Fitr by holding many relevant events and activities at the Kingdom’s airports.
Passengers were greeted and bid farewell with flowers and gifts; the airports had Eid decorations and greeting statements; and folkloric shows were held.
King Abdul Aziz International Airport in Jeddah gave passengers flowers, sweets and souvenirs.
King Khalid International Airport in Riyadh held many events, including folkloric and Ardeh dance shows. Passengers were offered sweets, flowers and souvenirs.
King Fahd International Airport in Dammam held several events, and had an area dedicated to children’s entertainment.
Children from the Charity Association for Orphans Care at Eastern Region (BENAA) enjoyed the celebrations and participated in offering passengers flowers and gifts.
At Prince Mohammed bin Abdul Aziz International Airport in Madinah, the Tibah Airports Operation Co. offered workers and passengers flowers, sweets and gifts.
The children’s theater attracted a large number of residents and visitors
Virtual reality video games were popular with the children
DAMMAM: A children’s theater organized by the Events Fund at Asharqia Chamber on the second day of Eid Al-Fitr in the Eastern Province drew praise from both visitors and residents.
Events held simultaneously at Al-Rashid Mall in Alkhobar and Dareen Mall in Dammam will continue for six days, and will include children’s theater, instant photography, free-hand drawing, smart games and face painting.
The children’s theater attracted a large number of residents and visitors. Some areas were dedicated to children’s amusement, with stage performances to show their talents. The Events Fund offered prizes to children enjoying the events.
Virtual reality video games were popular, with children lining up to take part, while visitors flocked to the face-painting activity’s five dedicated places.
Visitors commended the activities, which were enjoyed by children and people of all ages. Mother-of-two Sarah Al-Roueishid said that she was happy with the time both her children spent in activities, and hoped that the events will be organized again in future.
At the Green Hall events, which will continue until the fifth day of Eid, the stadium was filled with visitors watching the shows.
The audience booked their seats early to watch international groups, such as Comedy Acrobats, the children’s play “My Little Pony,” Ukrainian group Light Balance, the Lebanese group’s basketball acrobatics and the “Pride of the Earth” show.
The nine-member dance troupe Light Balance presented a number of overlapping and artistic performances as part of an exhilarating show.
Until the fifth day of Eid Al-Fitr, events at the Green Hall will start at 7 p.m. and continue until 11 p.m., while events in Al-Rashid and Dareen malls start at 4 p.m. and continue until 11 p.m.
Eid Al-Fitr has a distinct flavor in Al-Jouf, which has traditions that set it apart from other parts of the Kingdom
SAKAKA: The Saudi Commission for Tourism and National Heritage (SCTH) in Al-Jouf organized special events for the first day of Eid Al-Fitr, the Saudi Press Agency reported.
The festivities are being held on Sakaka city’s Al-Dhale’ heritage street.
“Sakaka Awal” will bring together different generations, an SCTH official was quoted as saying.
“The objective of the event is to link young generations to their beautiful and glorious past, and to preserve the popular heritage of the region, including food, traditional clothes, and songs that are usually performed on these occasions,” Yasser bin Ibrahim Al-Ali, SCTH director-general in Al-Jouf, said.
Eid Al-Fitr has a distinct flavor in Al-Jouf, which has traditions that set it apart from other parts of the Kingdom.
There is a custom called Al-Ada. Young people gather palm fronds one or two days before the festival. They assemble these into a pyramid-like form and set the structure alight in preparation for their evening games, which last until the second day of Eid.
There is also the tradition of Al-Khadhab night, when women and young girls wear traditional dresses and adorn their hands and faces with henna.
Another local custom is when neighbors gather for Eid prayers. They salute and kiss each other and share their food. Men and young boys gather for the traditional Saudi Al-Ardheh sword dance and play games.
The cities of Makkah and Madinah have a long history of receiving pilgrims. (AN photo/Tariq Al-Thaqafi)
MAKKAH: The squares surrounding the Holy Mosque of Makkah turned into a scene full of colors today, as pilgrims from across the world spent Eid Al-Fitr in one of the holiest cities in Islam.
Children can be seen wearing a mix of traditional Saudi clothing, with young boys trying to decipher how to put on the traditional ghutra (headdress).
Indian pilgrim Mohammed Raihan noted that Indian pilgrims were eager to wear traditional Eid garments — he was wearing elegant attire rich in colors, though his peers prefer the “Kurta Pajama,” the formal white Indian outfit of the Muslim-majority of the state of Kerala.
Yaqoob Mohamed Abdullah, from Niger, said that his traditional wear consisted of three embroidered pieces — pants, hat and shirt. He explained that African heritage is all about blatant colors as an expression of the importance of the event.
Indian pilgrim Mohammed Atif noted that this was his first Eid spent abroad, and he found it completely different in terms of the sense of brotherhood and love among this melting pot of peoples, traditions, cultures and nationalities.
Another Indian pilgrim, Rahman Akbar, added that Indians, he felt, were attached to their traditions despite their contact with many cultures and their migration to Europe and America.
Zakia Hajji from Nigeria said she made sure to wear her lively traditional wear, consisting of a green headband with shiny embroidery on it, and long and loose cloaks. Traditional wear, she told Arab News, is very important, as men and women alike understand the meaning and importance of celebrating Eid.
Fatima, from Malaysia, stated that many Muslim women wear long pants, skirts and head scarves, and that Malay women differ in tastes from the Indians who prefer to wear the sari and salwar, while men wear the “Kurta Pajama.”
The cities of Makkah and Madinah have a long history of receiving pilgrims, with many of their customs and traditions still lingering and kept for people to enjoy, a home away from home for religious travelers.
Indonesian, African, Indian, Afghan and Pakistani restaurants and specialty shops among others, can be found spread across the cities for pilgrims to visit and purchase items that remind them of home.
Worshippers perform Eid prayers at the Grand Mosque in Makkah. (AFP)
World-class musicians and prominent artists from Arab world join concerts in Riyadh and other cities
RIYADH: Saudi Arabia celebrated the first day of Eid Al-Fitr on Tuesday with prayers and festivities across the country.
The festival marks the end of the holy month of fasting and the public holidays, when combined with the weekend, give many people in the Kingdom plenty of time to enjoy with their families and friends.
Imams used their sermons to congratulate Muslims on the blessed occasion of Eid Al-Fitr and prayed to Allah that their fasting and good deeds would be accepted.
Eid prayers at the Grand Mosque in Makkah were led by Royal Court Adviser and Grand Mosque Imam Sheikh Saleh bin Humaid.
There were more than a million worshippers at the Prophet’s Mosque in Madinah. Among the congregation were Madinah Gov. Prince Faisal bin Salman and Madinah Deputy Gov. Prince Saud bin Khalid Al-Faisal.
In the capital the Eid prayer at Imam Turki bin Abdullah Mosque was attended by Riyadh Gov. Prince Faisal bin Bandar and other members of the royal family. They congratulated people on the auspicious occasion of Eid Al-Fitr.
Prayers were held in more than 550 mosques in Riyadh and there were also designated areas set aside for worshippers.
The capital’s main roads have been decked out with flags and banners bearing Eid greetings. There are also decorative lights and firework displays.
There are special arrangements at tourist attractions so that people can enjoy what the Kingdom has to offer.
Al Masmak Museum in Riyadh will be open to visitors throughout the holidays. Its director-general, Nasser Al-Oraifi, invited people to look around and learn more about the fort and its role in the Kingdom’s history.
He said the museum would be open from 4 p.m. to 12 a.m during the Eid holidays.
The General Entertainment Authority (GEA) is offering more than 80 different events for residents and visitors to enjoy during the Eid Season festival, which runs for five days across the country.
Theater lovers can pick and choose from 11 plays during Eid, including four to be held in the capital, that feature prominent artists from the Arab world.
The play “The World of Touch” is on in Riyadh schools for four days. “Amin and Company” stars Egypt’s Ahmed Amin and is being performed at Islamic education schools for the first three days of Eid.
“Antar the Filtered,” starring Kuwaiti artist Tariq Ali, is on at Princess Nourah University. “Over the Stanley Bridge,” starring Egypt’s Mohammed Saad, will be at Dar Al-Uloom University. Both plays will begin on the second day of Eid and last for three days.
The GEA is also organizing concerts for music fans. Riyadh will host a night featuring singers Angham and Rabeh Sakr at King Fahd Cultural Center on the second day of Eid.
A special show featuring singer Muhammad Abdu will be held in the Green Hall on the third day. Al-Ahsa’s Prince Abdullah Bin Jalawi Stadium will host a concert by Abdullah Al-Ruwaished and Nawal Al-Zoghbi, who are making their debut in Saudi Arabia.
There will be circus shows for five days. Eloise Circus at Riyadh’s Alnakheel Mall, Rob Lake’s magic show will be staged in the Kingdom’s schools.
Hollywood Circus is being staged at King Abdullah Park at Dammam’s waterfront, Shadow Land can be enjoyed at Dhahran International Fair, Al-Dahsha Circus is on at Al-Ahsa’s Al-Rashid Square, and the African Circus will be held at Al-Taif’s Rudaf Park.
The Americano Circus will be hosted in Riyadh’s Granada Mall for five days, starting from the second day of Eid.
The seasons are an initiative from the Saudi Commission for Tourism and National Heritage, the GEA, the General Culture Authority and the General Sports Authority.
There are 11 tourism seasons this year covering all regions of the Kingdom: The Eastern Region (Sharqiya) Season, Ramadan Season, Eid Al-Fitr Season, Jeddah Season, Ta’if Season, Eid Al-Adha Season, National Day Season, Riyadh Season, Diriyah Season, Al-Ula Season and Ha’il Season.
King Salman receives Lebanese Prime Minister Saad Hariri as well as scholars, sheikhs, senior civil servants and military officials who came to congratulate him on Eid Al-Fitr at Al-Safa Palace in Makkah. (SPA)
King leaves for Jeddah after spending the last 10 days of Ramadan in Makkah
MAKKAH: King Salman performed the Eid Al-Fitr prayer at the Grand Mosque in Makkah on Tuesday, the Saudi Press Agency reported. He was joined by Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman.
The king received Lebanese Prime Minister Saad Hariri after the prayer as well as scholars, sheikhs, senior civil servants and military officials who came to congratulate him on Eid Al-Fitr at Al-Safa Palace.
Makkah Gov. Prince Khalid Al-Faisal and other princes were also at the gathering.
The king greeted Saudis and Muslims around the world on Monday, the eve of Eid Al-Fitr. In an address, delivered on his behalf by Minister of Media Turki Al-Shabanah, the king wished peace and prosperity for the Kingdom, its people as well as to the Muslim Ummah and the world at large.
“Allah has honored Saudi Arabia, since it was founded by King Abdul Aziz, in serving the Two Holy Mosques and Hajj and Umrah pilgrims, a unique honor to take care of their safety, security and comfort. We praise God for helping us harness all the capabilities to enable the guests of God to perform their rituals in ease and comfort,” the king said.
The king added that Saudi Arabia sought to serve Islamic issues and support peace. “We ask Allah Almighty to help the Muslim Ummah to achieve whatever is good for the Ummah, and to unite Muslims to follow the Holy Qur’an and the Prophet’s Sunnah.”
The king left Makkah for Jeddah, having spent the last 10 days of the fasting month of Ramadan in the holy city.
Meanwhile, the king and the crown prince sent cables of greetings to several kings, heads of state, and leaders of Muslim countries. They wished that this auspicious occasion would bring about more progress and blessings to the Muslim world. The king and the crown prince also received greetings from kings, presidents and emirs of Islamic countries.
Religions have always emphasized the importance of community cohesion and urged cooperation among people.
In preparation for Eid Al-Fitr celebrations, Saudi Arabia’s Ministry of Interior recently launched an initiative, Forijat, that integrates law and technology.
The platform is accessed through the Abshar app for government services and allows public donations for people who have been imprisoned because they are unable to pay debts. What distinguishes this platform is its adoption of a formal mechanism for delivering donations to its beneficiaries
Within three days of the launch of the service on May 29, 200 prisoners were released, with a total debt repayment of more than SR6.6 million ($1.8 million). Donations targeted prisoners in financial, not criminal, cases.
The process starts by signing in to the donor account on the Abshar app. A payment number is allocated for each prisoner along with details of his case. After the donor completes the required steps, he receives a notification when the outstanding sum is repaid and the prisoner is then released.
Social networking sites show that people have welcomed the initiative in a way that reflects the Kingdom’s spirit of brotherhood and cooperation.
Such a grand initiative can form a significant part of national corporate social responsibility schemes. In the past two days we have also seen the participation of two banks in the initiative, and we look forward to greater involvement by the business community in achieving integration and cooperation in the community.
Donors should be aware that donations can be made only through the dedicated platform, and they should be wary of other unreliable donations.
Initiatives such as Forijat are an indirect way of raising awareness of the seriousness of debt, as well as the strict application of the law on the one hand, and the ethics and nobility of this people on the other.
• Dimah Talal Alsharif is a Saudi legal consultant, head of the health law department at the law firm of Majed Garoub and a member of the International Association of Lawyers. Twitter: @dimah_alsharif
Muslim worshippers attend Eid Al-Fitr prayers at the Al-Masjid An-Nabawi (Prophets Mosque) in Madinah, Saudi Arabia. (SPA)
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Muslim worshippers attend Eid Al-Fitr prayers at the Al-Masjid An-Nabawi (Prophets Mosque) in Madinah, Saudi Arabia. (SPA)
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Muslim worshippers perform Eid Al-Fitr prayers at the Grand Mosque in the Saudi holy city of Makkah. (AFP)
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A man sits visits the grave of a relative on the first day of Eid Al-Fitr at in the rebel-held Syrian northwestern city of Idlib. (AFP)
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A mufti and other muslims pray outside the Moscow Cathedral Mosque during celebrations of Eid Al-Fitr in Moscow, Russia. (AP)
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Ivorian Muslims offer prayers for the Eid Al-Fitr holiday in front of a mosque in Adjame neighborhood of Abidjan. (AFP)
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Syrians shop in the Bazurieh market in Damascus’ historic bazaar ahead of Eid Al-Fitr. (AFP)
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A young Muslim worshipper runs off during a mass prayer to celebrate Eid Al-Fitr at the Stade des Martyrs in Kinshasa. (AFP)
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Afghan men attend Eid Al-Fitr prayers at the presidential palace in Kabul, Afghanistan. (AP)
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Muslims attend the morning prayers of Eid Al-Fitr, marking the end of the holy month of Ramadan, in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia. (Reuters)
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Muslim worshippers perform Eid Al-Fitr prayers at the Suleymaniye mosque in Istanbul. (AFP)
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A Palestinian woman stands next to sweets for sale as Palestinians shop ahead of the Muslim holiday of Eid Al-Fitr, which marks the end of the holy fasting month of Ramadan, in Jerusalem’s Old City. (Reuters)
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Muslims attend the morning prayers of Eid Al-Fitr, marking the end of the holy month of Ramadan, in Mogadishu, Somalia. (Reuters)
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A Palestinian man prepares traditional cakes for sale ahead of Muslim holiday of Eid Al-Fitr, which marks the end of the holy fasting month of Ramadan, in Jerusalem’s Old City. (Reuters)
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Turkey’s Muslims offer prayers during the first day of Eid Al-Fitr, which marks the end of the holy fasting month of Ramadan at the Suleymaniye Mosque in Istanbul. (AP)
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Young Muslim worshippers are seen ahead of a mass prayer to celebrate Eid Al-Fitr at the Stade des Martyrs in Kinshasa. (AFP)
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Libyan Muslim worshippers gather to perform Eid Al-Fitr prayers at the Martyrs Square of the capital Tripoli. (AFP)
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Girls wait for the start of Eid Al-Fitr prayers in Bucharest, Romania. (AP)
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Children ride a carousel during the first day of the Muslim holiday of Eid Al-Fitr, which marks the end of the holy month of Ramadan, in Kabul, Afghanistan. (Reuters)
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Libyan Muslim worshippers pose for a picture after performing Eid Al-Fitr prayers at the Martyrs Square of the capital Tripoli. (AFP)
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Muslims attend the morning prayers of Eid Al-Fitr, marking the end of the holy month of Ramadan, in Juba, South Sudan. (Reuters)
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Decorations on a street in Jakarta as people start to head to their hometowns to celebrate Eid Al-Fitr. (AFP)
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Kenyan Muslims stand for prayers outside Masjid As Salaam during the Eid Al-Fitr prayers in Nairobi, Kenya. (AP)
Muslims worldwide celebrate Eid Al-Fitr marking the end of the Muslim holy month of Ramadan
Mosques hold special prayers at sunrise, followed by family visits and feasts
RIYADH: Muslims across the Middle East and beyond began marking the Islamic holiday of Eid Al-Fitr, one of the most celebrated holidays for the world’s 1.5 billion Muslims and traditionally a time for family and festivities.
The holiday marks the end of the holy month of Ramadan, when devout Muslims have been fasting from sunrise to sunset.
But the start of the holiday varies from country to country — with splits even within the same country — because the start of Eid is traditionally based on sightings of the new moon.
As with everything else in the Middle East, politics often plays a part.
Ordinarily a festive occasion, this year’s Eid comes amid war and turmoil in more than one area. In Afghanistan, the Taliban insurgent group has said it will not mark Eid with a cease fire, as they did last year. Yemen has been mired in war and famine for years, while in Sudan, the ruling military just conducted a deadly crackdown on Monday against pro-democracy protesters, killing at least 35.
Sudanese protesters have camped for months outside the military’s headquarters as the two sides negotiated over who would run the country after longtime strongman Omar Al-Bashir’s ouster in April. On Monday, the military had had enough and moved to crush the protest movement, overrunning the main sit-in site in the capital, unleashing furious volleys of gunfire, beating protesters with sticks and burning down tents.
At night, the state-run SUNA news agency announced that the country will celebrate the first day of Eid on Wednesday, but the Sudanese Professionals’ Association, which has spearheaded the protests, declared Tuesday is the first day of Eid according to astronomers in the Khartoum University — apparently in defiance to the military council.
The SPA urged people across the country to hold Eid prayers, “pray for the martyrs” and take to the streets to protest.
Mohammed Yousef Al-Mustafa, a spokesman for the SPA, said the military authorities has announced Tuesday as a fasting day in efforts to keep people in their homes after Monday’s “massacre.”
In Yemen, the internationally recognized government said Tuesday is the first day of Eid, while the Iran-backed Houthi militia who control much of the country including the capital, Sanaa, announced that Eid starts on Wednesday.
It is the first time in Yemen’s modern history that its people were split over celebrating Eid.
Saudi Arabia, as well as Kuwait, the United Arab Emirates and Qatar started celebrating on Tuesday, whereas Egypt, Syria, Jordan, the Palestinian territories and others said the Shawwal crescent moon was not visible across the country and would not start till Wednesday.
In Lebanon and Iraq, Sunnis began celebrating on Tuesday whereas Shiites will celebrate on Wednesday.
Pakistan, which is mostly Sunni, traditionally celebrates a day after most of the Muslim world. Pakistan is also split within the country along geographical lines, with residents of Khyber Pukhtunkhwa province, located on the border with Afghanistan and dominated by ethnic Pashtuns, celebrating Eid on Tuesday. The new moon was apparently spotted in North Waziristan, while the rest of Pakistan will celebrate on Wednesday.
In Afghanistan, Shiites were told by clerics that the moon was not seen so Ramadan would not begin for them until Wednesday. Sunnis however are celebrating Tuesday. The Taliban have said there will be no end to fighting while US and NATO troops are still in Afghanistan.
Elsewhere, thousands of Muslims living in Moscow gathered in and outside the city’s grand mosque to pray. Security was high and mounted police patrolled the streets.
The Moscow Cathedral Mosque, which has capacity for 10,000 people, was packed with worshippers, many of whom hail originally from Central Asia.
After Orthodox Christianity, Islam is the second biggest religion in Russia.
“We came to pray and the place is not important. The only place we need is a place to put a rug, to pray to God, to take part in this holiday — this is the most important,” said Sivush Veriyev.
Thousands of faithful packed stadiums in Addis Ababa and Mogadishu and there were also mass prayers in the Nigerian capital Abuja as well as Juba in South Sudan.
In Bangladesh, thousands of people have been scrambling to Dhaka’s ferry terminals and stations, packing trains heading out of the city to return to their hometowns for Eid.
In Turkey, President Tayyip Erdogan prayed at Istanbul’s huge new Camlica mosque, which he formally inaugurated last month.
The holiday traditionally lasts one to three days and is eagerly anticipated after the month of fasting. During Ramadan, the faithful refrain from eating, drinking, smoking or sexual activity from dawn to dusk.
Most businesses close during Eid, as people dress up and visited relatives, enjoying their first daytime meals in a lunar month. The day begins with early morning prayers and then family visits and feasts. Families also visit the graves of their lost ones and children are often given gifts or a special allowance.
It is a tradition in Jeddah, Makkah and Madinah for families and friends to visit each other and convey congratulations on the happy occasion of Eid. This can go on for up to six days. (Photo Supplied)
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It is a tradition in Jeddah, Makkah and Madinah for families and friends to visit each other and convey congratulations on the happy occasion of Eid. This can go on for up to six days. (Photo Supplied)
The Saudi region bustles with life as it celebrates in its own way
JEDDAH: For years, families native to Saudi Arabia’s Hijaz region have observed Ramadan and Eid Al-Fitr celebrations in their own special way, keeping traditions alive from one generation to the next. As the holy fasting month comes to a close, Eid customs come alive.
Natives of Jeddah, Makkah and Madinah ring in the holiday with customs and traditions that last for no less than three days.
There are family reunions, colorful breakfast gatherings, mabshoor (barbeque) dinners and home visits as children in their finest and newest clothes run around asking for chocolates and Eidiyah (money given as a gift).
The night of Eid starts with homes spotlessly cleaned, and traditional ma’mool (Arabic cookies filled with dates) and chocolates assembled in the guests’ salon to welcome visitors.
Meanwhile, household members polish their shoes and iron new dresses and traditional men’s thobes (an ankle-length garment).
Amid the smell of bukhoor (incense), kitchens prepare the ta’teema al-Hijaziya, a buffet style table setting that includes an assortment of cheeses, breads, jams, marmalades, olives, and traditional desserts such as dibyaza, the main dish of the table.
Made at home, dibyaza is a marmalade-like dish made by melting qamar al-deen (dried apricots) in a large pot, adding roasted almonds and nuts, figs, peaches and dates.
The mix is stirred well in a large pot for no less than two to three hours. It is then allowed to cool off and slightly harden for no less than a day.
It is customary for the matriarch to gather the younger family members a day or two before Eid to make the mix together as a family affair. It is distributed to friends and family for Eid morning.
• The night of Eid starts with homes spotlessly cleaned, and traditional ma’mool (Arabic cookies filled with dates, nuts or figs) and chocolates assembled in the guests’ salon to welcome visitors.
• It is a tradition in Jeddah, Makkah and Madinah for families and friends to visit each other and convey congratulations on the happy occasion. This can go on for up to six days.
• For many Hijazis, Eid prayers and visits are considered a reunion with friends and family members not seen in a while.
Nostalgic Eid-related music can be heard from homes, such as the late Talal Maddah’s “Kol am wintom bekhair,” Mohammed Abdo’s “Min al-aydeen” and Safa’a Abul Saud’s “Ahlan bel Eid.”
It is a Muslim tradition to head to Eid prayers at mosques, or empty lots turned into prayer areas, which commence a few minutes after sunrise. Muslims recite prayer chants en route.
Young girls twirl in their finest dresses as young boys barely hang on to their traditional ghutra (headdress), all smiles and excitement in anticipation of the gifts, chocolates and Eidiya money they will be receiving as strangers pass around baskets of sweets and chocolates.
• Amid the smell of bukhoor (incense), kitchens prepare the ta’teema Al-Hijaziya, a buffet style table setting that includes an assortment of cheeses, breads, jams, marmalades, olives, and traditional desserts.
• It is customary for the matriarch to gather the younger family members a day or two before Eid to make the mix together as a family affair. It is distributed to friends and family for Eid morning.
• Many families in Makkah and Madinah prefer to head to the Two Holy Mosques. It is tradition for the young ones to go with their fathers, while mothers tend to the home before guests start arriving.
• Hijazi family gatherings are large, loud, and full of joy and laughter. Eid is a celebration for all.
Many families in Makkah and Madinah prefer to head to the Two Holy Mosques. It is tradition for the young ones to go with their fathers, while mothers tend to the home before guests start arriving.
Visitors of the Two Holy Mosques from all walks of life share an occasion as one, united in celebration and exchanging greetings.
For many Hijazis, Eid prayers and visits are considered a reunion with friends and family members not seen in a while. In keeping with the spirit of the holiday, there is a shared renewal of bonds.
It is tradition in Jeddah, Makkah and Madinah for families and friends to visit each other and convey congratulations on the happy occasion. This can go on for up to six days.
It is customary for the elder of each family to hold breakfast with the ta’ateema al-Hijaziya. A number of Hijazi dishes other than the ta’ateema are also present at the table.
Young ones line up by age to kiss the family elders, who bear gifts. The elder men traditionally wear a white thobe and immah, an orange checkered cloth folded and wrapped in a turban style around the head.
The elder women wear a traditional mihrama and mudawara, a thin white cloth wrapped around the head almost like a headband, with a triangular flowing piece of cloth placed at the center of the head and the two sides lightly placed on the shoulders.
Many families continue their home visits through the afternoon and early evening, before heading to another main family event for dinner.
While many families opt for restaurants, others keep with tradition and gather at their in-laws’ home for a night of mabshoor.
Hijazi family gatherings are large, loud, and full of joy and laughter. Eid is a celebration for all.
Eid Al-Fitr celebrations will begin in the Kingdom on June 4
Saudi singers Rabeh Saqer and Mohammed Abdo, and Egyptian singer Angham will be performing in Riyadh.
JEDDAH: This year’s Eid Al-Fitr holidays hold many exciting surprises, with more than 300 events and 900 performances across the Kingdom from today until June 8, from concerts to circus acts, and from shopping festivals to fireworks shows.
Eid Al-Fitr celebrations will begin in Saudi Arabia on Tuesday as the Kingdom concluded its month-long Ramadan fast after official sighting of the crescent moon Monday night.
Saudi singers Rabeh Saqer and Mohammed Abdo, and Egyptian singer Angham will be performing in Riyadh. The capital will also witness a magic tricks performance from American magician Rob Lake.
Children will be catered for with performances of Ice Age, Barney, Baby Shark, Paw Patrol, Shimmer and Shine. Al-Ahsa will experience the music of Kuwaiti singer Abdallah Al-Rowaished and Lebanese pop star Nawal Al-Zoghbi. Al-Hofuf in Al-Ahsa will be sparkling with fireworks during the festival.
The Eastern Province will enjoy the voices of Emirati singer Hussain Al-Jassmi, Syria’s Assala Nasri, Iraqi singer Waleed Al-Shami and Egypt’s Mohamed Hamaki.
The Shadow Land show and Hollywood Circus will also enthral visitors in the Eastern Province.
Taif will host Saudi singers Khalid Abdulrahman, Jaber Al-Kaser and Rami Abdullah, and Iraq’s Hatem Al-Iraqi. Children can enjoy theater performances including “Go Ninja” and “Fireman Sam.”
Among other performances, Jeddawis can enjoy the exciting events of “Hello Summer” and “The Shadow Show.” Saudi actor Fayez Al-Malki will star in a theater performance in Madinah. Other cities in the Kingdom such as Aseer, Jazan and Qassim will also host exciting events for Eid.
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