May 1, 2011

Tulip Festival in Holland Michigan, May 7 - May 14

Holland pays homage to it's Dutch Heritage and to the iconic tulip each year, celebrating with parades, concerts, wooden shoes, windmills and of course thousands of colorful tulips in bloom throughout the town.

Decades of tradition will have Holland's mayor declaring the city streets 'dirty' and in need of washing in preparation for the celebration.  Local dignitaries clad in traditional Dutch garb (including wooden shoes) will wash the streets with large push brooms.  This year the mayor will also proclaim the town 'colorless' and in need of more tulips, instructing residents to plant even more blooms.  The ceremony and parade are scheduled for Wednesday, May 11th this year.

The Muziekparade on Saturday the 14th, features the famous Holland High School Marching Band, proudly wearing the iconic Dutch wooden shoes throughout the parade route.  Be sure to applaud the musical skills and wooden-shoe marching skills of these students!

Locals know the Tulip Time Festival is a busy time for the downtown district of Holland, and a few hints the experienced locals would like to share:
1.  Use the Tulip Trolley.  It runs every 30 minutes and offers a 75 minute tour of the tulip lanes with a knowledgable guide aboard.
2.  Bring your camera and extra batteries, but please do not pick the tulips
3.  Downtown is very busy, so consider lodging & dining outside city limits.
4.  Advance tickets are strongly recommended for the multitude of concerts.
5.  Wear comfy shoes for walking through town and through the tulip gardens.

For more Tulip Time Festival information, visit the organization's website www.TulipTime.com/.  For lodging accommodations in South Haven, only 30 miles away, visit http://www.victoriaresort.com/Guests of the Victoria can get driving directions and a festival schedule from the innkeeper upon arrival.