Saskatchewan’s Muslim community celebrates Eid-Al-Fitr

For many Muslims, Eid-Al-Fitr, a celebration that marks the end of Ramadan, begins Friday.

In Saskatoon, the local Muslim community is celebrating Eid at Prairieland Park.

Read more: Saskatchewan Muslims prepare for the most important 10 days of Ramadan

It’s the first of two festivals that are celebrated by Muslims annually, and the term “Eid-Al-Fitr” means the feast of breaking the fast.

Mateen Raazi of the Islamic Association of Saskatchewan said Ramadan follows the lunar calendar, noting that the fasts were shorter compared to when they’ve done them in June or July.

‘It was a lot easier. Fasts were shorter,” Raazi said.

He said this celebration is something that will go throughout the day and will go through the weekend as well.

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“The day just never ends. It just goes on until late night, and it’s going to be a celebration that will go throughout the weekend.”

Ramadan is a time when Muslims fast together in the pursuit of strengthening their relationship with Allah, and seeking self-reflection.

The event begins with an obligatory act of charity with the aim to make sure members of the community are able to enjoy the occasion.

Read more: Ramadan draws focus on more workplace support for Muslim employees

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A congregational prayer follows, with the Islamic Association of Saskatchewan saying it had almost 10,000 people take part last year.

Community members celebrate with food and loved ones, and will also exchange gifts.

“My favourite part of Eid is just the experience of being here with so many people, and just getting to know friends and family again you may not have met for a while,” Raazi said.

He added the food they have at the event is so diverse, noting about 30 to 40 countries are being represented.

The association added that the day is meant to reflect the lessons learned during Ramadan, and to renew commitments to acts of faith, kindness charity, service, tolerance and selflessness.

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Mayor Charlie Clark was at the event, saying he was there to greet people.

“Saskatoon is more diverse than it’s ever been, and we have people from all over the world that are making our community home,” Clark said, adding that it’s important that people feel welcome here.

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