06/15/2018 16:22 EDT

These Photos Illustrate The Incredible Diversity Of Eid Al-Fitr In America

Muslims are among the country's most racially varied religious groups, so their holidays are too.

Anadolu Agency via Getty Images
Muslims gather to perform Eid al-Fitr prayer near Washington, D.C., on June 15.

Eid al-Fitr is a joyous celebration that marks the end of Ramadan, a month of fasting and spiritual introspection for Muslims. 

Because Islam has been part of America’s religious landscape since colonial times, Eid has a long history in the U.S. This year it begins on Friday, June 15, and festivities will continue into the weekend. After participating in congregational prayers, Muslims will gather with friends and family to exchange gifts and share special holiday meals. It’s also traditional to give to the poor on Eid. 

Surveys show that no single racial or ethnic group accounts for a majority among the 3.45 million Muslims in the U.S. In fact, Muslims are one of the most racially diverse religious groups in the country. Forty-two percent were born in the U.S.; the other 58 percent came from at least 75 different countries of origin. On Eid, some communities gather by the thousands in sports stadiums, giving people the chance to worship with fellow Muslims of many different backgrounds.

American Muslims have developed their own distinctive ways of marking the holiday, like hosting barbecues in local parks and holding voter registration drives

Below, see American Muslims celebrating Eid this year. 

Photo gallery Eid in America 2017 See Gallery