Hundreds expected for prayers at Northampton park to celebrate end of fasting

Eid celebrations at Northampton Racecourse in 2013

Eid celebrations at Northampton Racecourse in 2013

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Open-air prayers will be held on Northampton Racecourse this week to mark the end of Ramadan.

Muslims around the world will celebrate Eid later this week, at the end of the Islamic holy month of fasting.

Eid prayers at the Racecourse last year

Eid prayers at the Racecourse last year

This year, Eid is expected to be on Friday July 17 or Saturday July 18 in the United Kingdom, depending on the sighting of the new moon.

In Northampton, prayers will begin at 8.30am on the Racecourse with an Eid in the Park event, which was attended by hundreds last year.

Alaa Abouzanad, the chair of the Association of Northamptonshire Supplementary Schools, who organises Eid in the Park said: “Eid begins with morning prayers and is followed by feasting and celebrations among family and friends. Some Muslims also celebrate the festival by wearing new clothes, giving each other gifts and decorating their homes.

“The Eid prayers start at 8.30am and after that we have the chance to meet and socialize with our Muslim community from all different countries and nationalities as we all come together to celebrate.”

Eid is one of the two biggest Muslim holidays of the year. The other major holiday is Eid al-Adha, the festival of sacrifice.

The three-day festival marks the end of the month-long fasting during Ramadan, which began on 18 June this year. The observation of the month of Ramadan marks the anniversary of the Quran being revealed to Prophet Mohammed.

Fasting during Ramadan is one of the five pillars of Islam along with belief, worship, charitable donation and the pilgrimage to Mecca.