Saudi Arabia’s Shaqra celebrates its 43rd Eid festival with lively traditional celebrations
RIYADH: Shaqra welcomed locals and expats alike to enthusiastically mark her 43rd Eid festival at the Hlewa Heritage Market, beautifully decorated with banners and colorful lighting.
Located about 190 kilometers from Riyadh, near the heritage village of Ushaiger, Shaqra is a small town steeped in a rich culture and history of which the locals are very proud.
The market opened at 4:00 p.m. and the festivities and events began after the Maghreb prayers.
Raffle tickets were distributed to visitors at the entrance, giving them a chance to win Eid prizes.
The festival also featured a children’s corner with board games, exciting competitions and face-painting stalls.
There were also small shops and food trucks selling local specialties, ice cream and traditional sweets.
Many of my colleagues had never witnessed authentic Saudi culture. I was very happy for them to learn about the traditions of family reunions and celebrations, and Shaqra brought that out perfectly.
In the center of the market was a large seating area for families to enjoy live musical performances.
Children dressed in traditional Najdi attire roamed the market, singing and laughing alongside the live bands.
Volunteers were also on hand at the event to provide interactive demonstrations on how to stay healthy during the festivities.
The celebrations were projected on large screens around the market for everyone to enjoy.
Kunduz Irisetova from Kazakhstan was visiting Shaqra Eid celebrations with her colleagues as part of a five-month exchange program.
“I had an amazing experience visiting Shaqra with my colleagues. It’s always great to learn about the history of different countries, and I enjoyed it very much,” said Irisetova, who was impressed by the hospitality of the locals. “My colleagues showed me the ancient city and I listened to stories about real Saudi culture and traditions.
“This is my first Eid in the Kingdom, and I was delighted to see how the people who live at the heart of the foundation of Islam hold these beautiful celebrations with respect,” Irisetova said.
“The people of the city welcomed me and my colleagues to celebrate with them, and they treated us as if we were all from the same city,” said Abdullah Yahya, a colleague of Irisetova.
“Many of my colleagues had never witnessed authentic Saudi culture. I was very happy for them to experience the traditions of family reunions and celebrations, and Shaqra brought that out perfectly,” he said. he added, “The townspeople were celebrating as one family. Although it was a small town, a large crowd gathered to celebrate, and it was really beautiful to see.”
He added: “The people of the town were really down to earth and welcoming. I am very happy that my expatriate colleagues were able to experience Eid in Saudi Arabia.