Arab Festival explores the cultural roots and current influences of Arab countries through live performances, foods, and a traditional bazaar, Saturday, 11 a.m.-10 p.m., and Sunday, 11 a.m.-5 p.m., July 23-24, at the Seattle Center Armory, Mural Amphitheatre and Fisher Pavilion. This year marks the 10th year of Arab Festival and the ninth at Seattle Center. Organized around the theme mahabbah (love), the festival celebrates sharing and caring. Syrian singer Hadi Aswad headlines the festival.
Musical highlights include performances of traditional and classical songs. There will be folkloric Arabic dances from Iraq, Palestine and Lebanon accompanied by musicians playing traditional instruments such as the oud and darabukka. A fashion show and a mock wedding ceremony blend current trends with cultural heritage.
Interactive activites invite festival-goers of all ages to engage directly through Arabic lessons, music workshops and dance classes. Children’s activites include fan making, craft projects, an Arabic spelling bee and face painting.
Explore Arab culture through cooking demonstrations and 15 cultural booths. Sample cuisine, desserts and beverages from Iraq, Lebanon and Palestine. A lively bazaar offers artifacts from Oman, clothing from Egypt, jewelry, memorabilia and henna tattoos.
The 23 Festálevents, organized by ethnic/cultural organizations in partnership with Seattle Center, help festival-goers experience the distinct cultures that influence the character and course of our broader community.
Seattle Center Festál is a program of Seattle Center Productions. Admission is free-of-charge. For more information on this collection of ethnic cultural events and other Seattle Center public programming, visit www.seattlecenter.com or call 206 684-7200. Learn more about Seattle Center Festál: Arab Festival at: http://arabcenterwa.org.