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Locals observe Ramadan safely amid the Covid-19 pandemic



BENTONVILLE, Ark. — Ramadan has begun and the month-long holiday is for families of Islamic faith to fast and abstain from pleasures, instead, they pray to become closer to God.

Locally, the Bentonville Islamic Center says they usually gather inside to share food and faith.

“We bring food inside the Mosaic and we all share food,” said Bentonville Islamic Center President Muhammad Ali.

He says Ramadan is a celebration of unity where families and friends can gather, but with Covid-19 guidelines in place, Ali says people can expect Ramadan to be different this year.

“With Covid, we are not oing it inside the Mosaic,” Ali said.

They are instead moving it to the parking lot. There will be a table set up outside for members to grab to-go boxes of food.

“Pick up their to-go box, eat in their car and then come in the Mosaic to pray,” Ali said.

Inside, social distancing guidelines will be followed and there will be a limit put on how many people can enter the Mosaic.

“We have a capacity of 55 people at the max,” Ali said.

This is a drop by over half the size they’ve seen in years past. Ali says he and his team are constantly in communications with the health department to ensure Ramadan meets Covid-19 safety requirements.

Ali says there will be, 6-foot distance and any kids younger than 10 will not be allowed in the Mosaic because of the guidelines.

The Bentonville Islamic Center will celebrate April 13 through May 12.