RIYADH: The Saudi capital is set to host a major camel festival, which will feature its very own four-legged beauty contest.
The festival, to be inaugurated on March 19, typically features more than 15,000 camels from the Kingdom and the Gulf states.
The camel beauty pageant was once a local desert custom that has now been transformed into a major competition, with prizes and gifts worth millions of Saudi riyals.
“The month-long camel fest will witness something distinct this year, and will offer world-class entertainment for heritage enthusiasts,” said Talal bin Khalid Al-Tarify, official spokesman of the festival, on Sunday.
The festival is being organized under the aegis of the Riyadh-based King Abdulaziz Foundation for Research and Archives (KAFRA).
KAFRA was founded in 1972 by a royal decree with a mandate to promote the history and heritage of the Kingdom, the Arabian Peninsula, as well as the wider Arab and Islamic world. The foundation is managed by a board of directors chaired by King Salman.
The camel festival will be held on the outskirts of Riyadh.
Al-Tarify called on participants to register their camels and comply with all regulatory provisions for taking part in the festival and the contests, including the beauty pageant.
Camels will have to be electronically numbered and pass medical tests. The winners will be given awards under different categories.
The organizers of the festival plan to transform the event into an international festival within the framework of the Saudi Vision 2030.

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