Eid al-Fitr - how will you celebrate?
5 things you can do on Eid day despite Covid restrictions — and the British weather
What can you do on Eid with so many lockdown restrictions still in force? And will the weather play ball?
Meeting our wider extended families for the traditional Eid al-Fitr celebrations indoors won’t be possible for most of us. Lockdown restrictions will be eased next week but sadly just not in time for Eid.
So, just like last year, meeting our families for Eid celebration and festivities will be predominantly outside.
But will it rain or shine on Eid day and what can you do to harness that spirit of Eid outdoors?
Here at Islam Channel, we’ll give you an Eid weather forecast and some top tips and suggestions on maximising the day with your family.
What you can and cannot do
Most of us aren’t powerful enough to use the excuse of an eye test to break Covid rules.
So if you’re not a Tory political advisor that’s backed by the Prime Minister, you should do the right thing and comply with the rules.
Indoors you cannot meet with anybody that does not live with or isn’t part of your support bubble.
You can however meet friends and families outdoors:
- In a group of six from any number of households
- In a group of any size from up to two households
Eid weather: will it rain on our parade?
Last year, the weather actually complied during the two Eid celebrations – with many of us enjoying the good conditions in the park and our gardens. This time around though, the British weather returns to its predictably unpredictable self.
Thursday 13th May
Had Eid al-Fitr fallen on Wednesday, there might have been a chance of sunshine, however, the weather for Thursday is not looking as good. Things get worse for the southern parts of the UK. A cloudy day with heavier showers or longer spells of rain, but there will be a few sunny spells too. Southwestern parts of England and Wales will see the heavier rain, whilst Scotland will have the best of the weather.
Though short-range forecasts are pretty accurate these days, the weather can still change at short notice. So always check your local weather forecast.
5 things you can do on Eid day
1. Congregational prayer outside
Unlike the last Eid al-Fitr, mosques will be able to hold Eid prayers indoors. But in more normal times, places with a larger congregation have held Eid prayers outside.
It’s sunnah to pray the Eid salah in a ‘Musallah’ — an outside space. Many hadiths point to the preference of praying outside so that everyone in the community - men, women and children - can take part.
Get in touch with your local mosque and see if this is happening where you are.
2. Check out your local park
An obvious option (weather permitting) and something many of us did last year for Eid.
Although the weather is a major factor, there are benefits to holding your Eid shindig in the park— even if it means having to embrace a bit of rain. The kids have a lot more space to run around and you can warm yourselves up with some family events and games.
And the best part; cleaning up is simple and easy. No mountains of dishes to wash if you take some paper plates and cups. Just eat and discard in the bin once done.
3. Go to a funfair or theme park
A change in weather and the onset of Spring always signals the start of the funfair season.
The relaxation of lockdown restrictions in April meant outdoor attractions like funfairs and theme parks were allowed to turn their flashing rides and machines back on again.
These attractions should be operating within government guidelines and organisers are making sure sanitary measures are in place. Understandably, some people may still feel it's risky, especially as funfairs tend to have high-touch point areas.
But if you’ve braved a busy afternoon at a local supermarket fighting to get that last basmati rice, you’re probably not too concerned about bumping into a ‘super spreader’ in a funfair.
It really is a great way to bring a larger group of friends and family together to celebrate the festivities in a fun and interactive environment.
Check your local listings and newspapers to see if there’s one near you.
4. Do it in the garden and hire a bouncy castle
You don’t have to go somewhere else to celebrate Eid. You can do it in your own — or someone else’s — backyard.
As long as you follow the guidance (the maximum number of people and households), you can hold your Eid celebrations in the garden. Yes, you might not have the space a park has, but it does provide convenience — the kitchen and bathroom are close by for a start!
You can get some garden games and activities. For example, many companies hire out bouncy castles and fairground type games at a reasonable price. Plenty of fun for the whole family!
5. Eat out at a restaurant
Yes, many people love cooking and relish seeing everyone come together to enjoy a home-cooked meal. But many also would rather someone else do it.
If cooking seems like a chore or you just fancy a change and want to do something special, why not take the family out for a meal outside? Although you can’t eat indoors yet, cafes and restaurants can serve food outside. And if it rains, some venues have outdoor shelters such as gazebos, marquees or a covered terrace.
So even if the unpredictable British weather tries to live up to its billing, you can still seek shelter from the rain.
Whatever you decide to do on Eid day, Islam Channel wishes you and your family a safe, joyous and blessed day. Eid Mubarak!
And don't forget to download Islam Channel's new app so you can catch up with our Eid programming whilst you're out and about, or watch it on-demand once you're back home.