Eid Ul Fitr 2023 was observed by Guyanese Muslims and others in New York and other metro area early Friday morning April 21. Some organizations celebrated the festival Saturday.
Eid culminates the end of the fasting month of Ramadan or Rojah or Ramzan. The holiday is tied to the sighting of the new moon end of April – based on the lunar calendar. Some devout Muslims claimed the moon was sighted Thursday evening. Others claimed it was sighted Friday and still others claim it is Saturday evening. The holiday falls the day after the sighting of the new moon. In New York, the school holiday was on Friday going with the sighting of the new moon on Thursday evening. Guyana also observed the festival on Friday.
Far away from Guyana, Eid was celebrated with fervour and zeal by Muslims in Little Guyana, Queens, New York at more than half a dozen Masjids. Muslims at the several Guyanese Masjids or mosques in greater Richmond Hill observed the festival in traditional style with a continuation of the month long fasting, prayer, and breaking of the fast with dates or kajoor and beverage. This was followed by consumption of vermicelli (vamazelly or sawine), and sirni (or butter-made mohanbhoog), maleda, gulab jamun, jalebi, and other sweets. As they do in Guyana, alms or charitable contributions were doled out to the less fortunate. Boxes were placed in front of the masjid for donations.
Some Muslim-owned businesses doled out snacks to the public. Hacks Bakery on Liberty Ave and 125th Street doled out coffee and snacks. For Eid, Muslims took the day off. Masjids were beautifully decorated with greenery, crescent moons, trimmings, colourful electronic lights, and huge signs of Eid greetings.
Masjids overflowed with worshippers. The police facilitated prayers on the streets at a few Masjids. Worshippers were led in prayers by a head imam or mullah, assisted by other meijis. Tents were set up just outside of each masjid or in the courtyard. Celebrants were well attired – colorful traditional kurthas, kamiz, lahengas, sheema, head wears, and Nehru suits.