HOUSTON “VIRTUAL” IFTAR 2021 WITH THE MAYOR OF HOUSTON
Historic Drive Thru Houston “Virtual” Iftar 2021 held and 3,000 Meals handed out in Respectful Manner:
Houston, Texas, USA (April 19, 2021)
Karachi, Istanbul, Baku, Basrah, and Abu Dhabi Sister City Associations, along with the Houston Mayor’s Office of Trade and International Affairs, the Islamic Society of Greater Houston (ISGH), the Ismaili Council for Southwestern US, Dawoodi Bohra Mosque, Helping Hand USA & many Collaborating Organizations organized the 2nd “Houston Virtual Iftar Program & Dinner Pickup” with the Mayor of Houston on Saturday, April 17, 2021 at the Bayou City Event Center.
Historic number of almost 3,000 Iftar dinners were professionally placed in the cars of the pre-registered Guests. This is estimated to be one of the largest Drive Thru Iftars of USA.
Houston Iftar is a two decades old tradition of the city, where many Muslim Organizations with Muslim & Non-Muslim Volunteers come together to have the Evening Meal with the Mayor of Houston, whose office fully facilitates the organization of the event. The year 2020 saw a full-blown COVID-19 pandemic that has continued into 2021 Ramadan. With last year being the 1st and this year the 2nd Virtual Iftar; we are continuing of the 20+ years of tradition.
More than 2,000 meals were given last year, while this year, about 3,000 meals were given out, making it a record occasion for the Houston Ifar with the Mayor. As always, delicious Iftar Dinner was catered by Tempura, Fadis’ & Sweet Factory.
On arrival, Honorable Mayor Sylvester Turner greeted all the volunteers, prepared the meals, and then went out to the driveways to place boxes of meals in the cars of several pre-registered guests, as they came through the enlisting point. Mayor Turner personally spoke to the people in the car, gave them greetings of Ramadan, and asked for their wishes & prayers for the City and everyone.
Earlier, Honorable Congresswoman Sheila Jackson Lee, Honorable Congressman AL Green, Honorable City of Houston Councilperson Letitia Plummer, Honorable Council of Sugar Land, Councilperson Naushad Kermally, Honorable Houston Police Chief Troy Finner, Honorable Consul General of Pakistan Abrar Hashmi of Pakistan, several notables and volunteers diligently served the pre-registered guests by placing boxes of meals in their cars, and conveying their best wishes to them.
For hundreds of hours, serving with the volunteers, Hon Congresswoman Sheila Jackson Lee, Hon Congressman AL Green gave special Congressional Proclamations to the Organizing Committee of the event.
Addressing a Press Briefing, Hon Mayor Sylvester Turner said he was very pleased that he challenged the program of 2,500 meals, but the organizers & patrons have arranged for almost 3,000! Next year’s challenge will be more than the turnout from this year.
Hon Congressman AL Green, Hon City of Houston Councilperson Letitia Plummer, Hon Houston Police Chief Troy Finner, Hon Consul General of Pakistan Abrar Hashmi of Pakistan, Chief Coordinator of the Iftar Muhammad Saeed Sheikh, President Ismaili Council Murad Ajani, and President ISGH Ayman Kabire also spoke on the occasion.
Later in the evening, a virtual pre-recorded program was broadcasted on HTV, ABC 13, TV One, NTV Houston, and social media. This featured Mayor Sylvester Turner, Chief Patron Syed Javaid Anwar, Religious Scholar Zaid Shakir, Imam Daniel Hernandez, and primary community leaders.
They thanked the Organizing Committee of Iftar, all the Collaborative Partner Organizations, Media Partners, Restaurants, and the hundreds of community volunteers with the Islamic Arts in help of bringing the celebration of Ramadan Iftar-&-Meal with communities and friends of Houston in an amicable manner.