By David Schuman

MINNEAPOLIS (WCCO) – The Muslim holiday of Ramadan, and the month of fasting that goes with it, comes to an end Wednesday night.

Eid, the festival of breaking the fast, begins after Wednesday’s evening prayer.

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Many people want to look their best to celebrate Eid, which means a busy week for Faysal Osman at his Nomadic Oasis barbershop in Minneapolis.

Osman fasted every day from sunup to sundown during Ramadan. He’s looking forward to celebrating Eid.

“Family gets together, the kids get to play and do a lot of other stuff, and finally we can eat again,” Osman said with a laugh.

Dressing up for the celebrations also makes for good business at Shantie’s Plaza in Eagan.

Melesha Tulsi’s family owns the store, and even though she’s not Muslim, her grandfather is, and she celebrates with him.

“[Muslims] take their family out to Mall of America, Valleyfair, or wherever they want as family time,” Tulsi said. “Obviously, we’re in COVID right now. Can’t really do much so a lot of families will be celebrating at home cooking with their family. That’s what we do every year.”

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Osman says he’ll be bringing his three kids to an outside prayer, which is in line with the Minnesota Department of Health’s safety recommendations for Eid.

“Muslims get together for that morning prayer and there’s a lot of concern about COVID and where it should be held,” Osman said. “Are we going to do it outside or inside? What’s safe?”

Even with the precautions, Wednesday marks another step toward normalcy.

“It is a big deal,” Tulsi said. “For many people, whoever’s fasting those 30 days, it’s that one day where we celebrate that accomplishment.”

Mosques and other places of worship are open at full capacity in Minnesota, with masks and distancing required inside.

MDH has more guidelines to safely celebrate Eid:

  • Do not host or attend large gatherings at mosques, restaurants, or your home, if possible. If you must, follow these recommendations:
    • Attend or host an outdoor gathering instead of an indoor gathering, if possible.
    • Wear a mask if you are indoors with anyone you do not live with. If you are in a crowded outdoor space, it is recommended to still wear a mask.
    • Stay 6 feet away from anyone you do not live with.
  • Consider delaying travel, even after you are vaccinated.
    • Every time you travel, you can spread COVID-19 variants to your community when you return. Help prevent COVID-19 variants from spreading in your community.
  • Get tested if you are exposed to someone with COVID-19, feel sick, or traveled recently.

Guidelines unvaccinated people should follow:

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  • If you gather with people from other households, remember to:
    • Wear a mask at indoor gatherings. If you are in a crowded outdoor space, it is recommended to still wear a mask.
    •  Stay at least 6 feet away from others.
    • Gather in an area with good ventilation. If indoors, bring in fresh air by opening windows and doors, if possible.
    • Cover coughs and sneezes, and wash or sanitize your hands often.
    • Write down the guest list in case someone tests positive for COVID-19 afterward and others at the gathering need to know.Get tested at least five days after attending a large gathering.
  • If you are sick, waiting for COVID-19 test results, or were in close contact of someone who has COVID-19, stay home and do not attend a social gathering.
  • Get vaccinated if you are eligible. It is the best way to help prevent getting COVID-19 and be able to celebrate with community safely.

Guidelines vaccinated people should follow:

  • If you have been fully vaccinated for COVID-19 and it has been at least two weeks since the final dose of vaccine (enough time for your body to develop immunity), you have good protection against illness for yourself.
  • Wear a mask when gathering with anyone who is unvaccinated or when visiting a household with anyone at higher risk for severe illness from COVID-19.
  • You can gather indoors with smaller groups of fully vaccinated people without wearing a mask. Avoid larger gatherings.
  • You can gather indoors with unvaccinated people from one other household (for example, visiting with relatives who all live together) without masks.
    • Do not visit people who have an increased risk for severe illness from COVID-19.
  • You can gather with others outdoors without wearing a mask except in crowded settings and venues, such as sporting events, outdoor concerts, or other places where you cannot stay 6 feet from others and you are with people you don’t know. Recommendations may differ by setting

David Schuman