Preparations underway for Eid celebrations in Small Heath Park tomorrow
Small Heath Park in Birmingham is being prepared for public Eid services, ahead of celebrations expected tomorrow.
With many of the city’s Muslim community marking the start of the three-day religious festival tomorrow, the inner city park is being set up to cater for over 100,000 worshippers as part of all-day celebrations including a family funfair, stalls, speeches and special children’s activities.
While most Muslims are observing Eid al-Adha from Tuesday (Aug 21), some are beginning their celebrations on Wednesday (Aug 22), with festivities ending on 25 and 26 August respectively.
The exact date of Eid al-Adha changes every year depending on the sighting of the moon, as the Islamic calendar is based on the lunar cycle.
Eid al-Adha follows Eid al-Fitr which took place in June and marked at the end of Ramadan. Also known as ‘The Festival of Sacrifice’ or informally ‘Big Eid,’ this week’s festival marks the end of the Hajj pilgrimage – one of the five pillars of Islam – and is regarded as the more prominent of the two Eids.
The festival remembers the story of Ibrahim’s sacrifice when God appeared to him in a vision and asked him to sacrifice his son Isma’il as an act of obedience. The celebrations begin two days after the start of the Hajj.
In Birmingham, both the Green Lane Masjid and Birmingham Central Mosque will be hosting special Eid prayer services on Tuesday morning.
Green Lane Masjid will be joining forces with several other local mosques to host its increasingly popular ‘Celebrate Eid’ outdoor event, which has had an increased turnout in the thousands year upon year.
The vast open space of Small Heath Park has today been covered in plastic sheets, ahead of the prayers which are expected to attract worshippers from around the country.
Only one service will be held in the park, with an aim to begin at 9.30am. Attendees are encouraged to arrive early, from 7.30am, to allow for plenty of time to find a comfortable space on the park grounds.
If the weather is bad on the day, Green Lane Masjid and fellow mosques will move their services indoors. If this is the case, announcements will be made on the joint Celebrate Eid website.
Although skies are currently overcast and cloudy, no rain is forecast for tomorrow morning. Fairground style rides have also been set up in the park for families who will attend with their children.
Meanwhile, Birmingham Central Mosque in Highgate will be holding five Eid services – one on the hour, every hour – between 7am and 11am. A sixth congregational prayer (jam’aat) will be accommodated at 12 noon if it is required.