ICNA SE Convention 2015: largest Muslim regional event
Atlanta, Dec 27, 2015 – The 21st annual ICNA Southeast Convention in Atlanta once again attracted thousands of attendees confirming its status as the largest Muslim event in the region.
Over 3,500 people attended the convention at the Renaissance Atlanta Waverly Hotel & Convention Center from December 24 to 26.
Imam Siraj Wahaj was a popular speaker at the Atlanta 2015 convention.
The convention featured many of the top speakers from across the nation speaking on the timely theme “Muslim Americans, Building Bridges”. The bustling convention bazaar had dozens of vendors who sold a range of merchandise from jewelry and clothing to books and handicrafts.
Malika Rushdan from ICNA Relief, Boston, speaking at the Atlanta 2015 convention.
Nearly 200 volunteers and organizers worked for months at many levels to make this convention the premier Muslim event in the Southeast region. “The unique feature for this year has been the diversity of the attendees” said Abdul Rauf Khan, the Convention Chair. He added “We can now say that this demography (of attendees) represents the true population of Muslims in the region”.
The organizers went the extra mile in accommodating the youth this year with the Midnight Basketball Tournament featuring Mahmoud Abdul Rauf (former NBA player), Youth lectures, Quranic recitation Competition, Youth Debate and Science Quiz Competition. These efforts appeared to have paid off as 46% of this year’s attendees were below the age of 17.
Congregants of the Friday prayer listening to the sermon by Dr. Jamal Badawi, Canada.
The program featured workshops on Islamophobia and bullying apart from many other important presentations. According to the organizers the convention proved to be a morale booster and confidence building opportunity for the Muslim community in light of the recent rise in Islamophobia across the country.
Shaykh Yaser Fazaga from Orange County, California addressing the Atlanta 2015 convention attendees.