The Oldest College Weekly in America. Founded 1868.

The Colgate Maroon-News

The Oldest College Weekly in America. Founded 1868.

The Colgate Maroon-News

The Oldest College Weekly in America. Founded 1868.

The Colgate Maroon-News

Students Celebrate Eid With First-Ever Carnival Hosted by Muslim Student Association

Instagram / @colgatemsa

The Colgate University Muslim Student Association (MSA) brought students together with games and food at the Eid Carnival on Thursday, April 11. The celebration marked the end of Ramadan and celebrated Eid al-Fitr. The carnival, held for the first time on campus in Huntington Gymnasium, had inflatable bounce houses, games, henna decorating stations and food — including bubble tea, whose sales went towards humanitarian aid in Palestine.

Eid, or Eid al-Fitr, is an official Islamic holiday celebrated by Muslims worldwide. The holiday marks the end of Ramadan, a month-long period of fasting observed by most Muslims. For many Muslims who observe Ramadan, fasting from dawn to sunset is obligatory and is part of an effort to undergo reflection through prayer and community.

Campus Imam and Muslim Student Adviser Ahmet Celik elaborated on the fasting process during Ramadan and the significance of the holiday.

“In the holy month of Ramadan, Muslims fast the whole month, and they celebrate the following month that they can successfully complete this holy month of fasting with a lot of special exercises,” Celik said.

The month of Ramadan emphasizes spiritual reflection and devotion for both oneself and others across the globe.

“[Ramadan] reminds Muslim students, faculty and staff that you have willpower — you can change yourself any time you like,” Celik said. “When you are hungry and thirsty for the whole day for thirty days, you are developing empathy and sympathy for those who are deprived of food and drink, and you know what it means to suffer from starvation. [Another] part of the month of Ramadan is charity — that you should do your best to support those who are in need.”

The Eid Carnival provided an opportunity for the Colgate Muslim community to come together to celebrate the completion of the month of Ramadan and share their joy with the Colgate community.

“Eid is a Muslim festival, but it is a day that Muslims share their food, their smiles, their joy, whatever they have with their fellow friends and neighbors,” Celik said. “So that’s why I think that a carnival is not only for Muslims, but the [entire] Colgate community to come share the joy and fun they might have on this Eid day.”

The MSA has celebrated Eid in various ways in past years, but this year’s carnival was an attempt to engage with the community in a different way. The festival celebration was originally planned to take place on the academic quad, but due to the weather, it was moved indoors to Huntington Gymnasium.

President of MSA and senior Mohamed Esmail spoke about how the MSA continues to host various events appealing to a wide audience in hopes of bringing the Colgate community together. 

“Every year we want to do something new to keep the community engaged and to have less of a barrier between us and the community,” Esmail said. “In previous years, we’ve done a comedy show, we’ve done a formal dinner and now we’re doing a carnival. We wanted to get back to the festival part of Eid — we’re on a college campus, but Eid for us growing up was an informal thing where we’d get to meet with people and have fun, so we wanted to embody that in a way that everyone can enjoy.”

The Eid Carnival was first-year Koko Nagatomo’s first time engaging with MSA events and she explained that the MSA was successful in creating an enjoyable and supportive environment.

“It’s a good cause; they’re having a fundraiser for Palestine. It’s nice to be able to see friends, and I wasn’t expecting all of the games. It’s nice seeing everyone support the MSA,” Nagatomo said.

The MSA shared their annual celebration with the wider student body by bringing together students through food and fun. The first-ever Eid Carnival on campus concluded with fireworks, drawing excitement as the light show could be seen across campus.

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About the Contributor
Joshua Repp
Joshua Repp, Assistant Arts & Features Editor
Joshua Repp is a first-year from Toledo, OH with a potential concentration in political science and a potential minor in Chinese. He has previously served as a staff writer for the News, Arts & Features and Baker's Dozen sections. On campus, Joshua is a marketing coordinator for Colgate Portfolio, intern for the division of arts and humanities, and participates in intramural table tennis.

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