Over 60,000 people visited the Sharjah Children’s Reading Festival during the first three days of its 7th edition, which kicked off on April 22nd and continues until May 2nd at Sharjah Expo Centre, signifying that this year’s attendants will surpass last year’s total of 140,000 visitors throughout the 11-day event.
The unprecedented number of 2,028 events spanning the Children’s Programme, Cultural Programme, Culinary Programme, and the Social Media Café, in addition to the first dinosaur exhibition in the region and the Sharjah Exhibition for Children Book’s Illustrations, have greatly contributed to this record number in only three days.
Yesterday (Friday) saw a heavy footfall of visitors, children and adults, and culminated in the evening, especially the halls dedicated to children’s workshops, entertainment, educational and awareness activities.
HE Ahmed bin Rakkad Al Ameri, Chairman of Sharjah Book Authority, SBA, said: “The Sharjah Children’s Reading Festival receives a growing attention from year to year, and this year we have seen a significant rise in the number of visitors, who reached 60,000 in the first three days. This remarkable increase is attributed to the diversity of and the increase in the number of events, the participation of a selection of Arab and international publishers and the presence of many renowned guests and celebrities.”
“We have noticed the impressive interaction of visitors with the Dinosaur Exhibition, hosted in collaboration with London’s Natural History Museum” he added.
Al Ameri pointed out that the world-wide fame enjoyed by the Sharjah Exhibition for Children Book’s Illustrations held alongside the festival contributed to the attendance of both children and adults, whereas the massive turnout of adults were interested in visiting the exhibition to view artwork exhibitions created by 134 artists from 31 countries.
Themed ‘Discover My City’, the 7th edition of the Sharjah Children’s Reading Festival is attended by 109 publishing houses from 15 countries and sees the participation of an elite group of prominent Arab and international figures, renowned writers, artists and educational experts from all over the world.
The guests include Egyptian artist Lubluba, Jordanian author Rawdha Al Hudhud, and Kuwaiti artist Abdul Naser Al Zayer, who took part in ‘Adnan and Lina’, the popular children’s animated TV series.
They also include Egyptian Director Shawki Hijab, Egyptian writer Yaqoub Al Sharouni, winner of the “New Horizons” award for the world’s best book at the Bologna Children’s Book Fair, and Omani Academician Dr Fatima Al Lawati, educational expert in Gifted and Creative Education.