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Thursday, December 1, 2022

Pakistani Americans Participate in the 25th Arizona Asian Festival

By A Correspondent

The Pakistani pavilion at the Arizona Asian Festival. (Photo by Yousuf Kamran Khamisani)

The 25th Arizona Asian Festival was held at Scottsdale Waterfront, Phoenix, on Oct 22nd. The Arizona Asian-American Association organized the event. AAAA is a community nonprofit working to promote the rich Asian culture, awareness of the city’s cultural diversity, and strengthen inter-community relations.

Scottsdale City Mayor David D. Ortega, Arizona State Treasurer Ms. Kimmberly Yee and the special guest Michael A. Pollack also attended the event. A large number of immigrants of Asian heritage joined the festivities of cuisines, dance, and socialization. State Governor Douglas A Ducey sent a special message for the Asian community through Barr Wong, Executive Director, of the Governor’s Office of Equal Opportunity. Ms. Mia McCrary, President of Arizona Asian American Association, and her team put in untiring efforts to organize and make the event very successful.

The event showcased the cultures of 19 different communities, including that of Pakistan. Different community organizations set up special booths to showcase their cuisine and culture in colorful ways. The visitors not only enjoyed the taste of these cultures, but also interacted with each other. The event had live performances by participating communities to depict their cultures and heritage. “We are excited that the 25th Arizona Asian Festival event was a huge success,” AAAA said in a post on its Facebook page following the event.

According to organizers, the young and old visitors of diverse backgrounds learned more about each other and shared the message of global harmony and peace.

Mohammed Haroon Khamisani, who has been associated with AAAA-AZ for over a decade, represented Pakistan and promoted Pakistani culture. Mr. Khamisani has been associated with the Travel and Tourism industry for his entire life and promoting tourism all over the world. He is also an active participant in many other community activities to bring
communities together.

October has been the month of three festivals celebrating Asian cultures, giving insights into the breadth and depth of the Valley’s Asian communities. Besides the Arizona Asian Festival, the other events included the Otsukimi Moon Viewing Festival, and the Chandler Asian Festival.

Pakistani population of Phoenix

Haroon Khamisani played a key role in organizing the event.(Photo by Yousuf Kamran Khamisani)

With a 2020 population of 1.64 million, Phoenix is the largest city in Arizona and the 5th largest city in the United States. According to the 2020 census, Asians account for 3.9% of the population, with the Phoenix-Mesa-Chandler metro area being home to nearly 200,000 Asians. The Indian community is considered to be the largest group among Asians. Another community that has been moving into the city and its suburbs in recent years is the Bangladeshi community.

No exact numbers of the Pakistani community’s population is available but Yousuf Kamran Khamisani, a local entrepreneur and community activist, the community’s population has been steadily growing in recent years. He estimates that at least 6,000 immigrants of Pakistan origin call the city their home.

“The community’s growth has been impressive over the years,” says Yousuf, a long-time resident of the city. “This city and the state offer a lot of opportunities to the immigrant communities. Given the opportunities, quality of life, and the cost of living, this place can be a perfect destination for Pakistanis,” he says.

Yousuf is very optimistic about the future of the Pakistani community in Arizona overall. He says the Pakistani community is becoming more and more visible in civic life, thanks to its proactiveness. Pakistan is

 

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