13 Fun Ways to Celebrate Arab American Heritage Month
BY: Nisreen Eadeh/Staff Writer
We are thirteen days into National Arab American Heritage Month and it’s time to celebrate! Try any of these 13 fun activities with fellow Arab Americans and non-Arabs so you can remember just how fascinating Arab heritage is.
1. Ask your teacher or professor to feature Arab American contributions to American society in the classroom
It can be as simple as putting up this picture on a chalkboard and saying: “these are Arab Americans.” Print it out for your teacher and don’t take no for an answer.
2. Ask your grandma to show you how to cook a traditional meal
You know… the really arduous one that takes six hours to make but is so delicious it’s worth it in the end? Make that one and feed everyone.
3. Teach Arabish to your children, friends, neighbors, teachers, strangers on the bus, your uber driver, cashiers at any and all stores, your waiter, your friends from high school you haven’t talked to in ages…
Did we forget anyone?
4. Find an Arab American event near you and go to it. For real.
Don’t say “InshAllah.” Just go and take a non-Arab with you. We triple dog dare you! And you’re not allowed to say no to a triple dog dare.
5. Share articles on social media
Wallah, It’s the easiest thing to do. So yalla, do it. There’s a bunch right here so just pick one and post it.
You have a legitimate excuse and we won’t tell on you, we promise.
7. Wear a thobe to work and never look back
You won’t think the idea is crazy until you remember how comfortable and awesome thobes are.
8. Have a dance battle: Haifa’s “Boos el wawa” verses Nancy’s “Ah wa nos”
Nothing says heritage better than a competition that can tear your entire family apart.
9. Watch Aladdin
Then promptly make fun of how this movie was a ridiculous stereotype for Arabs for 20 years
10. And then watch a real movie about Arabs like The Idol, Sweet Smell of Spring, Let Them Come, 3000 Nights, Much Loved, Nasser’s Republic, and Waves ’98.
These movies are all being showed at Filmfest DC this week and next. How convenient!
11. Have your parents, grandparents, or other relatives tell you about what it was like growing up “back home”
But have them stick to the funny stories. Let’s remember more about our homelands this month other than the bad stuff we see in the news all the time like wars, regimes, and occupation.
12. Write down why you’re proud to be an Arab American and send to: firstname.lastname@example.org
It could be anything: your amazing thick hair, your super supportive family, the best Arab American restaurant in your neighborhood, your inability to get sunburnt, your smart and talented children. You name it. We love it.
13. Throw a hafla!