Assalaamu Alaikum & Peace be on you,
To begin, on behalf of the dedicated volunteers that are the core of MuslimFest, I’d like to say a huge thank you for celebrating MuslimFest’s 15th anniversary with us. We hope you enjoyed your time with some amazing memories! Our aim is to showcase the development we have seen in the Muslim art space these past 15 years and to connect with artists of all backgrounds and ages to curate a diverse and vibrant event.
MuslimFest’s journey has been a powerful one. Starting as a small festival that not only promoted Muslim arts and culture but put Muslims in the spotlight in a public venue during uncertain times, gave the community a positive platform to communicate its stories in a language that’s universal: art. With the help of the community, sponsors, and partners, MuslimFest was able to grow to support artists and youth, and create an international platform that would highlight Canadian Muslims and the vast diversity of cultures that exist under the banner of Islam.
For MuslimFest to have made it to its 15th year, we extend our sincerest appreciation to the countless groups, sponsors, community partners and individuals for their support – MuslimFest is an event for the community and completely runs on the energy and support the community gives it. We also extend our appreciation to all levels of government that support and fund MuslimFest. We thank SMILE and Deen Support Services for assisting in building MuslimFest into an accessible event and supporting our commitment to become barrier-free.
We are incredibly honored to have the Right Honourable Prime Minister Justin Trudeau attend and celebrate our 15th anniversary with us. MuslimFest is a volunteer-run organization with 95% of its members being youth. Having the Minister of Youth present and engaging with them was both motivational and a moment of celebration of their Canadian Muslim identities. This year’s event also features a Yemeni Cultural Pavilion in the Great Hall and a touring exhibition and series of demos by Bin Qulander, a renowned Calligrapher from Pakistan. This year’s film line-up includes a featured film, Salaam B’y, a story of a Newfoundlander named Aatif, journeying to share his story of pluralism and tolerance during times of friction.
With all that said, MuslimFest has a lot further to go – our journey as an event, organization, and community is just beginning. We hope to grow to be a bigger platform for those that use the universal language of art and culture to share our community’s experiences and build bridges of understanding and respect between all.
Once again, thank you for your support and for celebrating MuslimFest’s 15th year anniversary with us! We are always eager to hear your feedback and experience of our event. For any comments or queries, please don’t hesitate to reach-out to us!
Tariq ‘Big T’ Syed