TORONTO - Canada's largest city of Toronto will welcome the first-ever Muslim track and field competition this year.
"The competition will be open to youths, 10 to 20 years old, both boys and girls and will be at the Toronto Track and Field Center which is at York University," Riyad Khan, a founder of Leading Out Loud (LOL) Inc., which is organizing the event, told OnIslam.net.
"It will be a day filled with fun, sports and unity."
Set to open in May, the Muslim Track and Field Championships 2013 will include a variety of competitions, including running events, pit events, shot put and high jump.Canada Muslims Urged to Contribute
Muslim Convention Boosts Canada Diversity
Canada Honors Blind Muslim Sisters
North America Muslims for CompassionToronto Muslims Preserve Environment
"We are going to be a sanctioned event through Athletics Ontario, so it can count as a preliminary event to go onto further competition," Khan said, referring to the sport governing body for athletics for the province of Ontario.
"So if anyone comes and breaks a provincial record, those times will be official."
LOL Enterprises was recently formed by Khan and Bilal Qureshi, teachers at the Islamic Foundation School in suburban Toronto.
LOL aims to provide unique opportunities for Muslim youth and young people in general within the Greater Toronto Area.
"Myself and Bilal from the Islamic Foundation School (IFS) have had this idea for sometime and we have a core group of students who graduated from IFS who wanted to do more for the community," Khan said.
Track and field is a sport comprising various competitive athletic contests based on running, jumping, and throwing
Track and field events are generally individual sports with athletes challenging each other to decide a single victor.
The racing events are won by the athlete with the fastest time, while the jumping and throwing events are won by the athlete who has achieved the greatest distance or height in the contest.
Track and field in the United States and Canada tends to refer to all athletics events, including racewalking, marathon and cross-country running.
Organizers have urged Muslim youths to join in the ground-breaking event and 'Be Orange with us.'
"What does it mean to Be Orange?" asks the organizers on their website.
"The color orange embodies many of the core values of our organization. It has been associated with traits of warmth, energy and ambition.
The founders are hoping to expand their offerings in the near future.
"We are starting with one competition but we are not restricted to athletics, said Khan.
"We want to do other things in the future, such as leadership conferences.
"At the school we take our students to events, such as the Ontario Student Leadership conference or interfaith events or Me to We, on a yearly basis and we are the only Islamic school there, he added.
"So we would like to do something like these so we can get more Muslims on board."
Muslims make around 2.8 percent of Canada's 32.8 million population, and Islam is the number one non-Christian faith in the Roman Catholic country.A recent survey showed that the overwhelming majority of Muslims are proud to be Canadian, and that they are more educated than the general population.
Reproduced with permission from OnIslam.net