Jeddah Gov. Prince Mishaal bin Majed, chairman of the Tourism Development Council, opened the second Historic Jeddah Festival here Wednesday, which will feature 89 heritage, recreational, cultural and marketing events. Prince Sultan bin Salman, president of the Saudi Commission for Tourism and Antiquities (SCTA), was also present. After the opening ceremony, Prince Mishaal and Prince Sultan toured the festival venue. “The festival is aimed at making people aware of their invaluable heritage and to help preserve it,” Prince Mishaal said.
The prince said the festival would contribute to the promotion of historical Jeddah projects because the old city has been listed as a World Heritage Site by the United bNations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO). He said the festival is being held under the slogan, Your Sun Shines. He pointed out that the historic district has many distinctive features, especially its development projects. He hoped that it would be a memorable and successful event and praised the organizers for helping to set it up.
The events this year include art programs and forums. There would also be shopping from the Nada Souk, passing along Al-Kabeer Souk and ending at Qabil Street. Visitors can benefit from discount sales, draws and gifts offered, he said. Visitors can also view 20 handicraft products and 20 folk dishes that were popular in ancient times. The opening event featured an operetta called Your Sun Shines performed by 100 folk artists. The operetta portrayed the social life of Jeddah residents of the past based on mutual support and cooperation, how later generations drifted away from the ways of their forefathers, and then how the sun started shining again over Jeddah with its heritage achievements under UNESCO.
The organizing committee expects over 1 million visitors. Those who spoke at the opening function included Jeddah Chamber of Commerce and Industry Chairman Saleh Kamel, Jeddah Mayor Hani Abu Ras and SCTA Director General in Makkah Muhammad Al-Omri.