Category Archives: Events

Save Achrafieh Stairs! Save The Mar Mikhael (Massaad) Stairs!

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Mar Mikhail stairs, also known as Massaad stairs, have always served as a practical passage for residents between Mar Mikhael and Geitawi. They’ve also become in the past few years a public gathering space, an artistic venue for young Lebanese and non-Lebanese and somehow an attraction for Mar Mikhail visitors specially after the stairs were painted in colorful geometric shapes in 2012.

I love these stairs and I don’t want them to see them get demolished and replaced by a road to a new construction site. You can’t just destroy a landmark like the Massaad stairs and all of us should protest against it and spread the word!

There’s nothing official yet about plans to destroy these stairs but no one has officially denied them as well except Beirut City Council member Hagop Terzian. Knowing how things work in Lebanon, the decision is never made public until it’s too late to protest it so it’s better to raise the issue from now and put the pressure on the concerned parties.

Mar Mikhail needs new projects that preserve its landmarks and create new green spaces, not modern buildings that Mar Mikhail and most Lebanese people cannot afford living in.

For those interested, there’s a protest taking place today from 4pm till 8pm at the Mar Mikhail stairs.

Urgent Call before Bulldozers Demolition of Mar Mikhael’s – Massaad Stairs!

This is a call to motivated individuals to join us save our capital’s memory from rampant and barbaric development…

To pressure the municipality to reverse its decision of the demolition, the neighborhood’s residents called for a sit-it next Thursday, November 14, at 4 pm.
They asked civil society organizations and preservation activists to stand by them in this campaign to defend the Massad stairs.

NO for Bulldozers
NO for Demolition
NO for Mafiosity
YES for Saving Beirut Heritage
YES for Achrafieh Stairs!

Please invite your friends, families, neighborhoods… we should show them our solidarity!

Yalla, come as you are!
Let’s dance, sing, meet, protest to support BEIRUT HERITAGE!


Pictures From The 2013 Beirut Marathon

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I just got back home from the Beirut Marathon after finishing the 10K Fun Run in 1 hour and 17 minutes. It’s a decent time specially that I haven’t ran 10K in years but I will be working for next year to finish the race in less than an hour. As far as the Marathon is concerned, the organization and atmosphere were great, everyone was having fun and there were over 36,000 participants.

Here are few pictures that I took:

May el-Khalil At The Start

Tripoli is Lebanese


Spotted Michael Haddad on my way!

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Lebanese Drifter Jad Himo Wins Red Bull Car Park Drift Regional Finals in Dubai

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Congrats to Lebanese Drifter Jad Himo for winning the Red bull Car Park Drift Regional Finals held at the Dubai World Trade Centre. Jad had won the Red Bull CPD finals in Lebanon back in July and qualified to the regional finals. Jordanian Othman Al Takriti came second and Ali Al Abloudi from Oman completed the podium.

Here are two videos, one showing Jad Himo’s winning run in Dubai and the other showing his winning run in Lebanon. Let’s hope the regional finals go back to Beirut next year.

Jad Himo Winning Run – Red Bull CPD Regional Finals – Dubai 2013

Jad Himo Winning Run – Red Bull CPD Lebanon 2013

All You Need To Know About The 2013 Beirut Marathon

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Running for a Good Cause

The Banque du Liban Beirut Marathon 2013 is taking place tomorrow and I will be running the 10k Fun Run, which starts at 9am. If you are registered to the Marathon and still don’t know what time your race starts, where to park the car, which roads will be closed and other useful information, you can find them all on the Beirut Marathon website. The races, the road closures, the parking areas, the prizes are all on this [page]. You can also download the BMA Mobile App available for Android and iOS.

10krun map
The 10k Fun Run Course Map

Based on previous experiences, and if you’re planning to go down with your own car, try to park somewhere near the finish line which is on Martyrs Square next to Le Gray hotel and the newly inaugurated Bachir Gemayel Avenue. Of course there are shuttle buses everywhere to take the participants back and forth but I’d rather go down with my car.

Moreover, here’s a nice map shared by my friend Abir showing the roads closed starting 6am on Sunday.

131110-Marathon-Road-Closure-1024x723 [High-Res]

As you all know, The Beirut Marathon Association runs a sub program for charities to participate in locally organized running events to spread their messages and benefit from various fundraising initiatives. Every runner can support a charity while running. I am supporting the Lebanese Autism Society this year.

Let’s all make this a memorable Marathon and see you all at the Finish line!

PS: There’s also a photo competition with many prizes to win for the most creative picture taken with the Lebanese Flag. Make sure to use the hashtag #run4lebanon.

Special To CNN: How Marathons Can Bring Peace By May El Khalil

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May El Khalil is the founder and president of the Beirut Marathon Association. The Beirut Marathon is taking place next Sunday.

(CNN)The sports world was shaken this past year by violence at the Boston Marathon, reminding us of the fragility of peace no matter the place and time. However, marathons in the United States, and the world for that matter, rallied bouncing back as they defied fear through running.

The drive to keep moving forward is at the very heart of marathon running, and nothing is better than large-scale sports events when it comes to helping people to overcome insecurities and fears together.

Peace is an emotionally charged word. It is something that everyone wants, and it is so elusive to so many. I come from Lebanon, a country that has seen more than its share of conflict and war, but it is also a country that embraces life and peace.

Many underestimate the power of sports to create real change in society. But in Lebanon, we have seen how sports, and especially running, can have a positive impact on individuals and ultimately on communities and countries. [CNN]

Red Bull SoundClash Lebanon – Mashrou’ Leila vs. Who Killed Bruce Lee

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I am cheering for Who Killed Bruce Lee.

The Red Bull Sound Clash is taking place on the 23rd of November 2013 at the Forum de Beyrouth. [Event]

Red Bull SoundClash is a once-in-a-lifetime musical collaboration that brings two bands with different sounds, styles, and influences together. The event will feature two opposing stages, and six rounds that are guaranteed to showcase the bands in a way that you’ve never seen. Fighting for the same crowd, the bands will explore different genres and sounds, highlighting the skill set needed to keep you up on your feet. Electro Indie Pop to Arab Rock and Reggae, prepare to get Funked up, & Folk-ed out of your mind… Let the clash of sounds begin.

Coldplay NOT Coming to Lebanon This October

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There were talks back in August that Coldplay might be performing live in Beirut this October, but they are definitely not coming in October or any time soon to Lebanon.

It’s too bad as there are a lot of Coldplay fans in Lebanon, including myself. One of my favorite all-time albums is Coldplay’s “A Rush of Blood to the Head”; I could listen to it almost everyday and not get bored of it. Let’s hope things calm down and we get to see them live next summer in Beirut.

Lebanese “Surfing For Peace”

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Location: Canal Saint-Martin, Paris

A dozen of surfers, including a Lebanese, participated in the “Surfing for Peace” day on the Saint-Martin canal in Paris to celebrate “International Peace Day”.

Read about it [Here].

Surfing 4 Peace is a person 2 person and cross-border cooperation initiative that aims to bridge cultural and political barriers between surfers in the Middle East.

Lebanon Water Festival

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This year marks the second edition of the Lebanon Water Festival. The festival is open to the public and includes activities such as underwater Photography, Sailing, Water Skiing, Find Swimming, Jet Ski, Wind surfing and Apnoea diving at 120 meters depth.

If you are interested in any of these activities, check out [LebanonWaterFestival], pick one and register for it. The activities are not for free but at a reasonable price.

Lebanon Water Festival is an exceptional opportunity for Lebanon to portray the richness of our country, our coastal line and people, bringing unity among or own regions. Lebanon Water Festival is an annual event that will spread from north to south, glorifying the treasures of each region.

This year already we will unveil to the World, the underwater beauties of Tyr, one of the only underwater Phoenician city!