The first festival was held 20 years ago, in 1999, and it's now held every two years.

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The Seattle Arab Festival, held this weekend at Seattle Center, coincided with the Muslim celebration of Eid al-Adha. The first festival was held 20 years ago, in 1999, and it’s now held every two years.

“Each country has its own special culture,” said Ayat Al-Musawi, 16, who added that Eid al-Adha was an extra reason for her family to come to the festival. “It’s nice to see all of the different countries and how we come together,” she said as her younger brother took part in a Palestinian cross-stitching display.

The timing was purely coincidental, said emcee Gus Mansour, who is Lebanese American. He noted that he and other Arabs are “sick of politics,” and that this festival is about unity. “We are very proud of our culture. Our culture is love and peace and music.”

To learn more, visit seattlearabfestival.com.