Garangao tradition comes alive

 12 Jul 2014 - 3:38

Children taking part in Garangao activities at Aspire Fan Zone yesterday. Kammutty V P

DOHA: Ramadan customs and traditions such as the Garangao remain rooted in the modern Qatari society amid the fast paced progress the country is witnessing.
“Garangao is an activity that reflects Qatari culture and holds the same significance as in the past. 
“It is very important for us to maintain this tradition and keep it going on in the future,” Mahmoud Al Khayyat, Head of Guidance, National Museum of Qatar (NMoQ), told this daily yesterday.
NMoQ, together with museums and departments, organised activities at AlRiwaq Doha exhibition space last night with a focus on Garangao bags.
“In the middle of Ramadan, Qatari families still prepare these bags to make children feel the Garangao atmosphere,” said Al Khayyat.
From the 1950s until now, families prefer to make bags rather than buy them. Children carry bags around the neighbourhood, singing the Garangao song and asking for nuts and sweets, he explained.
“Many things have changed but the spirit of Garangao remains which is to give joy to children and this cannot be taken from them. And I believe this will be continued by  the coming generations,” added Al Khayyat.
In the past three years, NMoQ has shown keenness to promote the deep-rooted Qatari tradition of Garangao by organising unique activities.
“Last year the focus was fashion; this year it is the Garangao bag, which mothers used to make at homes in the past. This is mainly for tourists and residents to know about this tradition,” he explained.
At last night’s activity, children designed their Garangao bags with the help of parents and the best ones won gift vouchers. 
Other museums and departments also participated in the event and held their activities. 
The 3-2-1 Qatar Olympic and Sports Museum hosted traditional Qatari games for children while Mathaf held a jewellery workshop. 
Qatar Museums’ (QM) Family Programmes organised a Lunar Scope activity, the Public Art Department held a mixed media art wall workshop and the Publication Department hosted a puppet show. There were also a traditional Brazilian sweets and authentic Qatari food corner.
Another Garangao event was held at Aspire Fan Zone last night, in which hundreds of children in traditional Qatari costumes participated.
The Peninsula