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Abu Dhabi, UAETuesday 26 March 2019

Families go on aquatic adventure at Sharjah Aquarium Carnival

Fourth annual event celebrating marine life aims to educate and entertain

Visitors will be wowed by a wide variety of shows and activities during the Sharjah Aquarium Carnival. Courtesy Sharjah Museums Authority
Visitors will be wowed by a wide variety of shows and activities during the Sharjah Aquarium Carnival. Courtesy Sharjah Museums Authority

Hundreds of families were transported to a water wonderland as the fourth annual Sharjah Aquarium Carnival got underway on Thursday.

The aquatic extravaganza, which aims to entertain while educating the public about the importance of protecting marine life, plays host to a wide variety of workshops, stage shows and acrobatic displays.

The free festival, which runs until March 2 and is this year titled "Sharks and Waves", is being held at Sharjah Aquarium and also features shadow plays involving different types of sharks and contests to be enjoyed by all ages.

There is an important message delivered, with one show featuring performers demonstrating how littering impacts on sea life.

Children also gathered on the stage to take part in a shark dance with life-size models of different sea creatures.

The carnival has already proved a hit with visitors.

“This is my first time here although I’m a resident of UAE from years back, this is an outstanding opportunity that teaches and entertain our kids free of charge,” said Basma Saeed, an Egyptian mother of two.

“This is going to stick into the minds of adults and children and I know that my kids would know from now on how important it is to save our oceans and seas.”

Rashid Al Shamsi, curator of the Sharjah Aquarium, which is operated by Sharjah Museums Authority, said the annual event celebrates the diversity of marine life and highlights how vital it is that humankind fights to safeguard it.

“The carnival is part of the Sharjah Museums Authority’s Because We Care campaign, which aims to raise awareness about aquatic life and marine ecosystem among community members, mainly children,” said Mr Al Shamsi.

A story of sharks told in the shadows at Sharjah Aquarium Carnival. Courtesy Sharjah Museums Authority.
A story of sharks told in the shadows at Sharjah Aquarium Carnival. Courtesy Sharjah Museums Authority.

He said that the Because We Care initiative also conducts regular sea cleanups during which volunteers from Sharjah Aquarium, Emirates Diving Centre, and other groups dive and fish out tons of rubbish from the waters.

“The last two cleanup activities took place last month and earlier this month in Khor Fakkan and Souq Al Jubail in Sharjah,” he said.

He said Sharjah Aquarium established a dedicated reserve to protect marine life such as the endangered blacktip reef sharks back in 2009.

The first ever blacktip reef shark was born at the aquarium in Sharjah a year later.

Sharjah Aquarium covers a vast area comprised of two floors boasting 20 aquariums filled with 1.8 million litres of water.

The Sharjah Aquarium Carnival is free to attend and runs from 6pm to 10pm daily.

Updated: February 22, 2019 01:58 PM

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