British Columbia

Thousands of Vancouverites celebrate Eid al-Fitr

The Muslim holiday of Eid marks the end of Ramadan, the holy month of fasting.

Muslim holiday marks the end of Ramadan, the holy month of fasting

Friday marked the end of Ramadan, the Muslim holy month of fasting. (Nic Amaya/CBC)

Thousands of Muslim Vancouverites celebrated Eid al-Fitr, to mark the end of Ramadan, the holy month of fasting Friday.

The day is marked by prayer and celebration after Ramadan, a month where adherents avoid water and food from dawn to sunset.

Afreen Hassan, 10, took part in the festivities with her family at the Vancouver Convention Centre. This was the second year she had taken part in the fast, which she said helps her understand the plight of the less fortunate.

"I learned that all around the world there's poor people, and they're really struggling, and I want to see how it feels," Hassan said.

Ten-year-old Afreen Hassan fasted with two school friends this year. (Nic Amaya/CBC)

As for the fasting itself, she said it was actually really fun.

"In my class, I have two friends who are Muslims so we fasted together."

For Majed Alarmawala, Eid is filled with nostalgia and has been a tradition he has taken part in since he was 14 or 15.

"We fast Ramadan because it's in the Islam religion. We feel how the poor people feel," Alarmawala said.

Thousands of people gathered in Vancouver to celebrate Eid al-Fitr. (Nic Amaya/CBC)

Saira Musharraf, another attendant, said the celebration was so important.

"We have fasted the whole month and we feel like it is a very special month. It purifies our soul," Musharraf said.

"It's a day we eat a lot, talk, and see friends."

Read more from CBC British Columbia

With files from Zahra Premji