Saudi National Day is celebrated at CSUN

Abdulaziz Aljaman, 26, MSE major and current CSUN Saudi Students Association president, addresses and thanks the crowd for attending the 82nd annual Saudi National Day on Friday at the USU. Ethnic food and live dance were among the list of activities offered to those in attendance. Photo credit: Leah Oakes/ Contributor

The Saudi Student Association celebrated Saudi Arabian National Day at the USU Grand Salon on Friday and featured traditional food, clothing, music and dance.

The Grand Salon was decorated in green and white, the colors of the Saudi Arabian flag. The men wore thobs, which are traditional Saudi Arabian clothing. A picture of King Abduliziz and the crown prince Salman was featured at the podium, in addition to the Saudi and American flags.

The event started with the Quran and was followed by the Saudi anthem and the American anthem, as a way to pay respect to the U.S. said Abdulaziz Aljamaan, the president of the Saudi Student Association.

Eleazar Xa, a senior international student from China majoring in senior marketing, came to learn about Islam and he particularly liked the traditional clothing styles.

Omar Alshahrani held a 10-minute presentation about the country’s history from past to present. Alshahrani also talked about the country’s economy and education.

Salaman Alshehri, a CSUN business major, performed traditional music.

The Saudi government supported the event by giving the Saudi Student Association $4,000, according to Hamad Almujibah, former president of the Saudi Student Association.

Three different dances were performed at the event, one of them being the original version of Ardah. The dance, Ardah, varies from one area to another, but we decided to show the one the royals prefer, said Almujibah.

There was a small exhibition featuring images of traditional clothing, holy buildings and nature photography by Saudi Arabian Cultural Mission, as a way of giving students an image of the country.

Students were able to try out local clothing, taste local food and get a henna tattoo by tattooist Shempi Kaur.

“(Henna tattoos are) an Indian traditional wedding custom,” said Kaur, a volunteer.

Faisal alZamil, a freshman majoring in manufacturing system engineering, thought it was a great way to gather Saudi students and to see their talents. The music was what he enjoyed the most.

Hosam Mirza, a freshman engineering management major at CSUN wanted to meet other Saudi students.

“This is maybe the only event where Saudi people have a chance to meet each other,” Mirza said.