The fifth-annual Arabian Night was a night consisting of traditional Arabic food, song, dance and poetry that celebrated the diverse range of cultures in the Gulf region.

The event was hosted in Baker Ballroom by the Arabic Language Student Association and sponsored by the International Student Union. Also collaborating were the Omani Students Association and the Saudi Students Association. The theme of the event centered around the Khaliji region, commonly known as the Gulf. Gulf countries include Bahrain, Kuwait, Oman and Saudi Arabia.

The night began with a reading from the Quran, followed by an introduction from ALSA’s advisor, Areej Ahmed. She said the purpose of the night was “to show the beauty of the Arabian culture — the beauty that today’s conflicts are trying to conceal.”

The flags of Gulf countries were brought to the stage, and groups performed Arabian songs and dances in traditional clothing afterward. A stand-up routine was delivered, and several Arabic poems were read, including a poem titled “The Arabian Peninsula.”

Essan Fuad Abu-Al Khair, an international student from Saudi Arabia, said he felt the event went well and enjoyed the dances. In particular, he said Arabian Night serves “to make the people know who we are — who the Saudi Arabian students are —and what is Saudi Arabia. To make sure that the whole world knows.”

After the performances, the attendees were invited to eat the Arabian cuisine included with the admission price. A line of tables stocked with food awaited outside the ballroom.

Sufana Adli Ansabri, one of the announcers for the event, said her favorite aspect was the food, and nights like these can be educational for both domestic and international students.

Adli Ansabri, a freshman studying English and an international student from Oman, said other international students are “interested in our culture, and we are more than welcome to tell them about it.”