TikTok star Ismail Taher helps give away 360 turkeys in suburban Chicago – The Pantagraph

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Ismail Taher, 28, a Tinley Park native and TikTok star, hands out turkeys Thursday in Country Club Hills.
COUNTRY CLUB HILLS – “I want to see those turkeys flying,” a volunteer shouted as cars drove by slowly for a turkey giveaway Thursday in Country Club Hills.
The flow of traffic around the Big Lots parking lot near the County Club Hills Theater Pavilion moved steadily as people waited to get a turkey and to meet local TikTok star and actor Ismail Taher.
As he handed out turkeys, Taher said the first woman he handed one to recognized him immediately and seemed excited to meet him. But, Taher, a Tinley Park native, said the turkey giveaway was about the community.
“I’ve been blessed and fortunate to live a life where success was brought my way,” Taher said. “When God gives, you give back.”
Taher, 28, couldn’t take classes or go to shows during the pandemic, so he said his family encouraged him to upload videos to TikTok. At first he thought the platform was just for choreographed dances, but when he saw others perform short skits he decided he could do that and keep his acting skills sharp.
Through the platform, Taher said he met Anthony Todd from Cincinnati, and the two connected. They decided to organize the turkey giveaway in Country Club Hills, which is where Taher held his first job at a taco shop.
Taher, Todd and Crescent Foods came together to give away 360 turkeys, each paying for or donating 120 turkeys, Taher said. To provide security and traffic flow, Taher said he reached out to the village.

“When you do good for one person, it can start a chain reaction of good,” Taher said.
Country Club Hills Mayor James W. Ford called it “a great event for this time of year.”
“After the pandemic for the last two or three years, people need help,” Ford said.
The fact that TikTok stars put the event together shows the platform “is a great tool,” Ford said.
Todd said they wanted to use their friendship and the power of social media to do something good.
“You don’t see a lot of this on TikTok,” Todd said. “We just wanted to inspire people.”
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Ismail Taher, 28, a Tinley Park native and TikTok star, hands out turkeys Thursday in Country Club Hills.
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