The most happening attraction in the capital for the last month finally marked its conclusion with a spectacular show on the last day. The night ended with some fantastic performances, the long anticipated raffle, the awarding of certificates to numerous participants and lastly, the grand prize of a car which was given away on the 19th of August.
The month-long festival began on the 17th of July and lasted until the 17th of August and was held at al-Sab’en Park in Sana’a. The last day included a special program arranged by the Ministry of Tourism and the Yemen Tourism Promotion Board in appreciation of all their guests who have attended the fair year after year since it launched in 2006.
An exuberant crowd comprised of youth and families accumulated at the festival premises to witness the spectacular evening unfold. The show consisted of several acts: it commenced with the military band, who marched onto the stage to perform.
Amongst the participants in the festival was a local Yemeni religious band that showcased their talent by chanting in chorus, followed by a group of performers who came all the way from Palestine. Their performance, the Palestinian folk dance, inspired a huge round of applause from the crowd and left them enthralled. Next in line was Ahmed Suleiman, the famous Yemeni poet, who recited a few of his poems and entertained the crowd with his fabulous poetry. The final act was a traditional Yemeni dance performed enthusiastically by the Yemeni Folk Troop.
Prizes and certificates were awarded to all the winners and to honor the participants in the various competitions for art, photography, souvenirs, handicraft items, and poetry held throughout the festival. Several winners from the raffle were announced at the program. The last was the grand prize of a car that was given away to one lucky winner on the 19th of August at a special event organized by the Yemen Mall.
The tourism minister, Mr. Nabil Al Fakih, who was present at the venue along said that the he festival is a special event for the people in Yemen and for the special guests who are visiting from neighboring Gulf countries. “People are the only true judges of the event,” said the minister when inquired about his opinion of the festival. However, he added, “this year’s festival has been better than previous ones and we hope that future programs are as successful. We hope that the Sana’a Tourism Summer Festival benefits tourism in Yemen.” The minister did seem pleased with the event as a whole. The ministry aims to promote tourism all over Yemen through such projects. By launching many more festivals throughout Yemen’s governorates and inspiring others to arrange and implement such festivals, the ministry hopes to create awareness among the society and get the people involved in the tourism sector. They also aim to attract more families, tourists and immigrants from other Gulf countries. With every year’s event being a step up from the previous one, the event should evolve from a local attraction into a regional one.
Some of the features of the festival included carnivals and parades, religious ballad band, fashion show of traditional Yemeni Attire, French laser show, Egyptian folk dance & circus, Palestinian folk dance and others.