Muslim Family Day attracts nearly 57,000

Wednesday, 07 October 2009
VALENCIA, Calif. – When a Six Flags roller coaster restarts after 20 minutes of being suspended 150 feet in the air, you would expect cheers and applause from spectators and riders alike. What you usually would not expect is to hear the vibrant sound of “Allahu Akbar” resonating through the crowd that has gathered to watch the shaky passengers complete their ride. But at Muslim Family Day on Sept. 26, that’s exactly what happened.

About 5,500 people braved the 109-degree southern California temperature at Six Flags Magic Mountain to attend Muslim Family Day, which included a bazaar, basketball competitions conducted by the Muslim Basketball League, and live entertainment provided by ManifestONE and Noor, who debuted their latest single, “Guidance,” at the event.

One attendee entered the fold of Islam by taking shahadah.

The Muslim Family Day tradition began eight years ago, where members of the Islamic Circle of North America reserved Six Flags Great Adventure in New Jersey for a day of “halal fun.”

What was once a gathering of 1,500 Muslims there has grown exponentially, with a whopping 25,000 people descending on Six Flags Great Adventure this year, according to organizers.

Nearly 57,000 people attended Muslim Family Day events at Six Flags locations nationwide this year.

Waqas Ahmed, coordinator of this year’s nationwide event, describes Muslim Family Day as an occasion that “provides a fun, halal and [classically] American opportunity for Muslim families.”

Ahmed added that event goers are blown away by the opportunity “to be around so many Muslims,” only wishing for “more events…uniting [Muslims] throughout the year.”

Although Muslim Family Day is essentially a place for down time and enjoyment, it does serve the dual purpose, according to Ahmed, of depicting the true image of Muslims and American Muslim organizations.

“[This event points to] our relevancy, our capability, and our support from the community,” Ahmed said. “[It proves we can] continue to be the national voice for Muslims.”

This year’s Muslim Family Day also kicked off ICNA’s “Save Family, Save Society” campaign, a five-week long movement dedicated to reconstructing the deteriorating structure of the American Muslim family.

Along with offering workshops and seminars on family and parenting, ICNA will be launching its National Family Counseling Hotline and bringing Muslim Family Services to several cities.

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