(MENAFN - Arab News) Children of the Gulf countries, Jordan and Iraq celebrate a folk treat during the holy month of Ramadan called "Girgiaan". While the word "Girgiaan" is derived from the verb that means knocked or banged, the original history of this tradition is not documented. Some unconfirmed references trace it back to the celebration of the birth of Prophet Mohammed's grandson Al Hassan.
In the folk tales, it was a tradition that children not go out into the streets at night except on the 13, 14 and 15 of Ramadan, banging containers they were carrying and knocking on doors in the neighborhood to remind people that they have approached mid-month, encouraging them to accelerate their worship habits, and wishing them good health. Dressed in costumes, children went from house to house singing chants. As a reward for this gesture, people offered the children treats and sweets.
This Girgiaan tradition still exists in rural areas where communities are small, but in the big cities, Girgiaan takes on a whole new prospective, where celebrating Girgiaan is done in philanthropic societies, schools or even in assembly halls and hotels.
Al Faisaliah Hotel revived this tradition with a twist, inviting children from the embassies of GCC countries, Spain, Ukraine, Pakistan, India, Egypt, Sudan and Djibouti to take part in exhibiting their traditional clothes in hopes of being awarded best costume.
The children enjoyed many gifts and prizes, one of which was the famous Ramadan lantern. Four top prizes for best costume were awarded to two children from Spain and two from Saudi Arabia.
"Al Faisaliah Hotel is keen on preserving this tradition through this occasion for the last 7 years, as it holds a great position in the hearts of Muslims.
Children gather with their families to enjoy a special night and share their heritage with international guests, introduce our traditions and get to know theirs" said Eyad Al Yahia, director of finance and supervisor general of Al Faisaliah's Ramadan festival.