Though there are fewer activities in Qatar this weekend due to the holidays, there is still plenty to check out, including a racing event, Christmas services for Christians and fresh produce shopping at the country’s three farmer’s markets.
Here are our picks:
Qatar Mile ‘Speed Festival’
Round 2 of Qatar Mile is taking place at Al Khor Airport this weekend, on Dec. 26 and 27th. According to organizers:
“Each year, regular champions like you and your neighbor with the Lambo race solely to find the fastest car in the Middle East. You read that right, no professionals and no speeding tickets, just guys with really epic cars given the chance to put the pedal to the metal. On the Al Khor Airstrip, watch Lamborghinis, Ferraris, Corvettes, and other road monsters tearing up the tarmac.”
The event is free but people will need to sign up for tickets online here.
The airstrip opens at 9am on Friday, with the first runs starting at 9:30am. There is a prayer break from 11:30am to 12:30pm, when races resume until 5pm. On Saturday, the races begin at 9:30am. Awards are handed out at 4pm.
Christmas church services
Qatar’s church complex will be buzzing over the next few days as hundreds of thousands of residents flock there for Christmas services. There are several different programs.
According to the Catholic Church of our Lady of the Rosary’s website, services will be held from 5pm to 11pm tonight (Dec. 24), in various languages. Midnight mass begins at 11pm and will be held in English at the main church.
On Christmas itself, the Catholic Church will hold services from 6am to 7pm. See the full schedule for exact timings, languages and locations here.
Meanwhile, the Anglican Church will offer a Midnight Eucharist starting at 11pm tonight. The service in English will be held at the Chapel, and the service in Tamil will be at the Church of the Epiphany.
On Christmas Day itself, services will be in English at 10:30am and 8pm. For more information, see the church’s website here.
Check your fitness
The Qatar Olympic Committee is holding its annual “Physical Fitness and Health” program on the Corniche on Dec. 25 from 4pm to 8pm near Sheraton Park. The program will also be held on Dec. 26 at Aspire Park from 4pm to 8pm.
The program includes fitness and medical tests such as blood pressure, sugar levels, etc. There will also be aerobic activities to measure respiratory fitness.
Qatar’s popular farmers markets have reopened for the winter season and this year, three sites around the country are selling locally grown, fresh produce.
The newest is in Al Wakrah, which joins existing markets at Al Mazrouah Yard, near the Umm Salal Stadium; and the Al Khor market, which features produce from some 42 Qatari agricultural farms.
The markets, which are open from Thursdays to Saturdays from 7am to 5pm, run until mid-May. Read more about them here.
Qatar Mirror exhibit
Residents have one last chance to check out an art exhibit called “Qatar Mirror” at the Hamad bin Khalifa University Student Center Art Gallery.
With their work, artists Ben Barbour and Michael Perrone, assistant professor at Virginia Commonwealth University, attempt to stimulate dialogue about the preservation of traditions in Qatar’s urban landscape and social fabric, alongside the desire for modernization and economic growth.
The exhibit closes on Jan. 1, 2015.
What are your weekend plans? Thoughts?