Sharjah Commerce and Tourism Development Authority (SCTDA) has officially inaugurated the 11th Sharjah Light Festival – themed ‘Echoes of the Future’ – which includes a series of activities and shows, held under the patronage of His Highness Sheikh Dr. Sultan bin Muhammad Al Qasimi, UAE Supreme Council Member and Ruler of Sharjah, until February 20, 2022.
The event was held tonight at University City Hall and included the Festival opening act, attended by representatives of local and international media in the UAE, as well as an enthusiastic crowd.
Speaking at the event, SCTDA Chairman His Excellency Khalid Jasim Al Midfa said that the Festival, now in its 11th edition, is “one of the hallmarks of the success and originality of our emirate’s tourism sector, organised every year by the Sharjah Commerce and Tourism Development Authority, under the patronage of His Highness Sheikh Dr. Sultan bin Muhammad Al Qasimi, Supreme Council Member and Ruler of Sharjah. This event is an extension of years of hard work and dedication to charting a bright future for the Emirate of Sharjah – a future that cements its name and praiseworthy reputation as an unparalleled tourist destination teeming with culture, art, and authentic heritage, all the while being up to speed with visitors’ needs and requirements, and on a par with the world’s leading destinations.”
“We are immensely proud of the accomplishments the tourism sector is making each year, guided by the forward-thinking vision and boundless support of our wise leadership, represented by His Highness the Ruler of Sharjah,” H.E. Al Midfa added. “Over the course of the past 50 years, this vision has served as the foundation for Sharjah’s development and progress. And today, we pledge to continue along this path, hand in hand with our partners across the emirate, to firmly position Sharjah on the global tourism map and guarantee its rightful place at the fore across all fields.”
The opening ceremony included a dazzling light show that adorned the University City Hall building – one of Sharjah’s most prominent architectural icons that embodies the emirate’s commitment to education and heritage alike. The show told the story of Sharjah’s past, shedding light on important milestones and underlining the prominent role the sea and the library played in everyday life. The display then shifted its focus to the emirate’s present, highlighting its accomplishments in education, art, astronomy, architecture, communication, and the environment.
Over the course of 12 days, the Festival offers visitors from the UAE and abroad 10 outstanding shows lighting up landmarks all around the emirate. Sites for the Festival’s shows are: Al Majaz Waterfront, University City Hall, The Holy Qur’an Academy, Sharjah Mosque, Al Noor Mosque, Al Hamriya Municipality building, government buildings in Kalba and the building of the Directorate of Human Resources in Kalba, Sheikh Rashid bin Ahmed Al Qasimi Mosque in Dibba Al Hisn, and Al Rafisah Dam in Khorfakkan.
The Festival has set a busy agenda of events and activities, including the Food Truck Zone, which has returned this year with more than 30 participants, including national small and medium enterprises in the food, beverage, and confectionary sector.
The Festival’s displays shed light on the geometry, intricate details, calligraphy, arabesque patterns, and Islamic architecture and designs that characterise Sharjah’s landmarks. The shows present illustrated stories that celebrate the emirate’s traditional Islamic heritage, offering a vision of the past, present, and future of Sharjah.
SLF 2022’s agenda also includes contests for the media and the public. The competition targeting media professionals is divided into three categories: Journalists, where prizes are given for the best coverage in Arabic and best coverage in English; Photographers, which recognises the best photograph in Arabic newspapers and best photograph in English newspapers; and finally, Social Media Platforms, which rewards the best media coverage of the Festival on Instagram.
The second contest is dedicated to the general public and is held via the Instagram account, @visit_shj. The competition is organised by the Sharjah Commerce and Tourism Development Authority, in collaboration with the Union of Arab Photographers, who will serve as a jury to evaluate applications. A prize pool of more than AED20,000 has been allocated for the top three photos taken of the festival.
Media professionals and members of the public can enter their submissions throughout the Festival on the Festival’s official website.