Garanga’oh, also known as Garangao, Karangao or Garanga’oh Night, is celebrated in the mid-month night of Ramadan. Starting right after Iftar, children gather in their vibrant traditional costumes in each neighborhood and start wandering, going from door to door, chanting a special rhyme while holding cloth sacks to fill them with goodies (similar to Halloween). The night continues after the evening prayers till late hours of the night. The adults gather at home waiting for the youngsters to show up to fill their sacks with sweets and nuts. Families pay short visits to each others and exchange greetings and folk dishes.
Garanga’oh has become more than just a traditional ‘trick-or-treat’ night. In order to preserve this folk heritage, schools, clubs, companies/organisations and even hotels in Qatar celebrate the event by giving away folk dishes, sacks of Garanga’oh sweets and nuts, and by playing folk games.
We told you what’s going to happen before it happened with Marhaba’s Garanga’oh 2014 Celebrations in Qatar and now we’re showing you what happened.
Katara Cultural Village
Katara’s Garangao celebration on Saturday attracted a record 68,220 visitors, including children and families, of different nationalities.
For over six hours, activities were held in collaboration with institutions, including Supreme Education Council and Mövenpick Tower & Suites Doha. They introduced traditional heritage and culture of Ramadan to children, who came dressed in traditional and colourful outfits.
Activities started at Katara Amphitheatre, and then moved to Building 12 where children and their families enjoyed competitions and entertainment and received gifts. Henna, handicraft and art as well as traditional food and games were among those that delighted visitors. Besides, Doha Film Institute (DFI) and Education Above All (EAA) screened Pascal Plisson’s documentary On the Way to School at Katara Drama Theatre. The showing of a short film on Garangao in Qatar in Building 16 also attracted a large number of children and families. A children’s library to teach kids how to organise books and prepare library cards and photo albums was also held.
Qatar Petroleum: Children in Dukhan mark traditional Garangao night
Qatar Petroleum’s Dukhan community recently held its annual Garangao night, which was attended by many children of various nationalities. Organised by the Dukhan Women’s Association, the event was held at QP’s Dukhan Golf Club and featured a variety of fun-filled activities.
It started with a storytelling show that the children enjoyed, and it also offered henna and face painting for all participants. The children were also able to have their photographs taken next to a falcon. As part of the event, a group of children was also given the opportunity to visit the Dukhan Operations Management Building (DOMB). Operations Manager-Dukhan Fields, Ahmad Saif Al Sulaiti, personally welcomed them in his office, and the children also dropped by several other department offices within the building to collect more gifts. The festive celebration concluded with the distribution of traditional Garangao sweets.
MoI Takes Part in Garangao Celebrations
The Ministry of Interior joined with the Qatari children to celebrate Garangao night, the traditional Ramadan festival of Qatari children who rejoice wearing their traditional costumes and singing popular songs. The General Directorate of Traffic, South Security Department, Airport Security Department and Airport Passports Department organised several cultural awareness events in different localities. Hundreds of families and kids participated in the events and presented several cultural, traditional and entertainment programmes and they received Garangao gift bags with toys, sweets and nuts.
In addition to participating in the entertainment programmes, the Traffic Department held patrols in all streets and internal roads to prevent traffic accidents and protect children from incidents as the children were enthusiastically out to visit the neigbouring households to collect gifts and mark their excitement. No incidents were reported on the occasion of Garangao celebrations this year.
The General Directorate of Traffic organised special events on Thursday night at the Department’s theatre hall, where a number of children and their parents attended that made them help to learn traffic rules through entertainment activities.
As part of Ramadan activities by Traffic Department, the Media and Awareness Department organised ‘Traffic Village Events’ at Villagio that has drawn the attention of hundreds of children and the public as well. The events included several competition games, cultural contests and paintings that added to traffic awareness. The participants were distributed several gifts.
The Community Policing Section of South Security Department also celebrated Garangao in association with Wakra Hospital, at the Hospital Building. Competitions were conducted on biography of Prophet Muhammad (PBUH), General Knowledge and other cultural contests and gifts and Garangao sweets were also distributed. The CP officials also visited the child patients in the hospital and presented them sweets and gifts.
The Airport Security Department and Airport Passports Department also participated in the Garangao celebrations in association with Hamad International Airport (HIA) and Qatar Airways held at the Ramadan Tent arranged in front of HIA. Hundreds of children enjoyed the events and got bundles of gifts that rejoiced them well and filled their Garangao bags.
Ooredoo at Souq Wagef
Ooredoo’s Alrabaa brought #DaysOfJoy to children during Garangao by distributing goody bags and inviting the community to join in with the rich cultural heritage that comes with the day.
The Alrabaa provided nuts and sweets to children and their families and encouraged everyone at Souq Waqif to sing the traditional Garangao song together. The Alrabaa, a group of friends who embody traditions of Qatar, have been popping up across Doha bringing kindness and joy with their box full of surprises.
The QFC Authority marked the holy month of Ramadan with an invitation to the local business community, media and other dignitaries to join them in a celebratory networking Suhoor at the Four Seasons last Thursday. Support for this worthwhile cause stemmed from the evening’s theme of Garangao, the traditional children’s celebration popular in Qatar and other Gulf countries. Garangao was chosen as a theme because of the timing of the Suhoor near the half-way point of Ramadan and because of the values of community, family and heritage which it embodies.
The guests were entertained with live music and enjoyed a short film in which QFC Authority employees described the significance of Ramadan to them personally. In the spirit of Garangao, guests received traditional cloth bags containing small gifts which were distributed as the Garangao song was played.
McDonald’s Qatar celebrated Garangao last night by welcoming children and their parents to enjoy spectacular festivities at its branches at Suhaim bin Hamad, Airport, Markiya, Ras Abu Aboud, Abu Hamour, Hyatt Plaza, Woqood, Gharafa, Lagoona Mall, Barwa and Al Meera, West Bay.
McDonald’s play area and drive thru were filled with loud cheers and Garangao songs by children dressed in their traditional and colourful costumes. They enjoyed activities, including games and a workshop at branches as they walked around collecting bags packed with nuts and candies. McDonald’s characters added to the festive appeal as they entertained kids and showered them with surprises. Special gifts were distributed children dressed in the best traditional clothes.
Reach Out To Asia (ROTA)
Reach Out To Asia (ROTA), Qatar’s leading educational non-profit organisation in Qatar celebrated the joy of Garangao with child patients at Hamad Hospital’s Paediatric Ward and Rumailah Hospital’s Children’s Rehabilitation Centre as part of its Ramadan 2014 Project, sponsored by Occidental Petroleum of Qatar Ltd (Oxy Qatar).
Previously, ROTA hosted special events to mark this joyous occasion, looking to provide new treats and entertainment for children. This year, ROTA hosted the event in two special locations for vulnerable children in the local community: outside, ‘My Gym’ in Rumailah Hospital that provides a large soft play area suited to the requirements of children with special needs, as well as in Hamad Hospital’s Paediatric Ward. ROTA volunteers played with the children and distributed bags filled with sweets and toys, while they all joined together to sing the traditional Garangao song.
Souq Waqif Boutique Hotels (SWBH)
Joy filled the air when the children visiting historic Souq Waqif received SWBH’s special Garangao bountiful gifts of all kinds of sweets and nuts. The night has always been an important feature of Qatari heritage and traditions throughout its history. Amid wide support and welcome during the night, a large number of children poured into the streets wearing their traditional clothes and happily smiling while listening to traditional stories. They also sang the Garangao song and learned about old traditional handicrafts in a great family atmosphere.
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