Royal Commission for Al-Ula launches ‘rock naming’ competition with SR100,000 top prize

The Royal Commission for Al-Ula has launched a ‘rock naming’ competition with a SR100,000 top prize. (Royal Commission for Al-Ula/rca.gov.sa)
Updated 13 September 2018
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Royal Commission for Al-Ula launches ‘rock naming’ competition with SR100,000 top prize

  • The commission said it hopes the competition will “take participants to the heart of the Al-Ula”
  • Participants should take a photo of a unique rock formation in Al-Ula and suggest a name for it

LONDON: The Royal Commission for Al-Ula has launched a new competition — called “Name A Rock” — in which people have been asked to give names to rock formations within the governorate.
In a statement, the commission said it hopes the competition will “take participants to the heart of the Al-Ula” and enable them to “explore the unique and awe-inspiring rock formations that characterize the province to introduce them to the world.”
Participants should take a photo of a unique rock formation in Al-Ula and suggest a name for it. In addition, participants should provide the reason behind the naming and locate the rock on the map.

Registration closes in two months, nominations will be taken in November for voting until December, after which judges will evaluate the entries before three winners are announced and cash prizes will be awarded — with first place scooping SR100,000
Al-Ula province is home to several archaeological treasures, which includes Madain Saleh, which became Saudi Arabia’s first UNESCO World Heritage Site in 2008.
Home to dramatic desert landscapes, spectacular rock formations and some of the Middle East’s most significant ancient sites including those built by Lihyanite and Nabataean civilizations of the first millennium BC and beyond, historic Al-Ula is described as a wonder of the ancient Arabian world.
Registration can be found here.

 


We have a story to share with the Saudi people, says new US official in Riyadh

Cultural and educational exchange programs between Saudi Arabia and the United States help build stronger ties. (AN photo)
Updated 8 min 9 sec ago
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We have a story to share with the Saudi people, says new US official in Riyadh

  • We have a story to tell and a story to share in Saudi Arabia with the Saudi people. We are pleased that so many Saudis want to study in the United States: US Public Affairs Counselor in KSA

RIYADH: Cultural and educational exchange programs between Saudi Arabia and the United States “help build stronger ties between the two countries and bring them closer together,” according to Brian Shott, the new US Public Affairs Counselor in Saudi Arabia.

Speaking at a reception to welcome him at the US embassy in Riyadh on September 18, he said: “One of the main things we do is we try to share aspects of the United States and of American culture, but we also learn from Saudis and Saudi culture.” 

In her opening speech, the embassy’s Deputy Chief of Mission Martina Strong also highlighted the enduring relationship between the two countries, saying: “Tonight is a celebration, a celebration of a friendship that has extended over many, many decades.”

Shott, who previously served in Morocco, Cairo and Baghdad, will be in Saudi Arabia for the next two years, during which he will promote educational and cultural exchanges.

“There are some real opportunities here and we have been fortunate enough to be able take advantage of partnerships with Saudi organizations and Saudi agencies, whether it is the General Authority for Culture or the Ministry of Education,” he said.

“We have a story to tell and a story to share in Saudi Arabia with the Saudi people. We are pleased that so many Saudis want to study in the United States.”

Meanwhile, the reception also served as a farewell to Robin Yeager, the cultural attache in Riyadh. She said that it had been a “very dynamic time to be in Saudi Arabia. It has been a pleasure and an honor to be here at a time when I get to know first-hand the future that Saudis are trying to build.”

The night that women were were given the right to drive, she said she went out and saw the “thrill on their faces.” To assist with empowerment and other progressive policies, embassy staff work on social issues and provide leadership training for women’s groups, she said.

“It is beautiful because they take something that an American expert talks to them about and they turn it into the Saudi way to approach it,” she added. “It’s not that we are changing things; it’s that we are giving them tools, so they can build what they want to build.”