19 Jan 2018 – 1:29
By Raynald C Rivera / The Peninsula
DOHA: A large number of visitors thronged the Katara beachfront yesterday to enjoy the many shows and activities on offer at the launch of Katara’s fifth annual Winter Festival. The visitors, mostly families, watched traditional shows and street performances as well as take part in workshops and competitions at this year’s five-day Winter Festival being held in cooperation with various entities and sectors in the country.
Dr. Khalid bin Ibrahim Al Sulaiti, General Manager of the Cultural Village Foundation-Katara, led the inauguration in the presence of Felix Plasencia Gonzalez, the Deputy Minister for Foreign Relations for Asia, Middle East and Oceania at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the Bolivarian Republic of Venezuela.
“Through hosting the Winter Festival, Katara is keen on providing a thrilling ambience which is full of entertaining activities and campaigns beneficial to visitors, not to mention that the Cultural Village ensures to organize events in response to what visitors want.
In addition, the launch of the Winter Festival coincides with the annual school holiday, for families to invest their time in a festive and entertaining ambience that best suit all family members,” said Dr. Al Sulaiti.
Gonzalez, who also toured the various facilities of Katara as well as the Mahaseel Souq, lauded the Cultural Village for promoting culture and the arts at the local and international levels which contributes in achieving cooperation, cultural exchange and openness among people.
Many food stalls are scattered around the venue, where people can sit and enjoy sampling a wide variety of delectable cuisines. Al Gannas Association is participating with an exhibition and educational workshops for young falconers, while the Al-Galayel Championship has set up an exhibition of collectibles and equipment from all previous championships. The Ministry of Municipality and Environment, on the other hand, is scheduled to organize ‘winter planting’ workshops for children.
People were also seen flocking to Katara’s Traditional Souq to see and buy a diverse range of products, such as textiles, perfumes and unique art pieces.
A number of medical centres including Syrian American Medical Center, Al Hayat Medical Center, Bin Muftah Center, Naseem Al Rabeeh Medical Centre, Value Medical Center and Boston Medical Care are holding health awareness campaign and offering free medical services such as blood sugar and blood pressure tests and body weight analysis.
On the sidelines of the festival, Tamim Toast Master International Club is staging entertaining shows on the art of public speaking and classic poetry while Bedaya Centre is exhibiting new business startups aimed at informing the public on the various services provided by each project. The festival is open to the public from 4pm to 9pm until Monday.