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Somali Week celebrates culture, heritage of Minnesota's Somali community

Thursday June 30, 2022
By Charmaine Nero 

The event kicks off July 2 through July 17. It's the first time the event is back after taking two years off during the pandemic.

MINNEAPOLIS — Somali Week is Minnesota's Somali Community's largest celebration — and it's back after a two-year hiatus following the pandemic.

With its return, the streets of Minneapolis will soon be filled with the sounds of music and people.

"We have been hosting Somali Week for over a decade and the reason for that is we have the largest Somali community in the U.S.," said Mohamed Farah, executive director with Ka Joog, an organization hosting the Somali Week festival.

"It kicks off with Somali Independence Day and you have thousands of individuals coming together in Minneapolis on Lake Street," he said. "You'll see a music section, art section, animals, health lane ... there's a lot of amazing things going on for all different individuals, not just Somali."

It's an open invitation at different locations across the Twin Cities, and this year's theme hinges on promoting diversity through unity and inclusion.

"We're doing it on Lake Street, which is the melting pot of so many different cultures. You're being exposed to businesses that are are owned by East Africans, you're seeing businesses owned by the Latino community," he said.

Throughout the years, the event has grown from one block with 5,000-8,000 participants to three blocks with a diverse crowd of over 40,000.

The festival was canceled the last two years due to the pandemic, but now, there's a chance to make up for lost time.

"We want to make sure the Somali Americans that are born here, that they understand their culture and heritage," he said.

A chance for all to experience.

"Come out and be part of this celebration," he said.

The festivities kick off July 2 and go on until July 17. For more information, visit the website here.


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