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King’s Day – Northern Times

Every year, Dutch people in Holland and abroad celebrate King Willem-Alexander’s birthday with a full day of music and food, and Dutch culture known as Koningsdag or King’s Day.

This family-friendly event is the largest public party in Holland, but what is it about? Why are the Dutch so obsessed with this national holiday? Here are the basics.

who is the king?

The current monarch of the Netherlands is King Willem-Alexander. He became King of the Netherlands in January 2013 after his mother, Princess Beatrix (then Queen), announced she was stepping down from the throne.

King Willem-Alexander (second from right), Queen Maxima and Princess (from right) Amalia, Alexia and Ariane at King’s Dag 2018 in Groningen. Photo: Traci White

The monarchy has officially existed since 1815. Although there have been governors (chief magistrates) since 1581, William I (confusingly, was actually his second William I) was the first leader of the Kingdom of the Netherlands. bottom.

Although the royal family now serves mainly symbolic and diplomatic functions, it is actually one of the most expensive royal houses in Europe.

What is King’s Day?

National festival featuring outdoor concerts and flea markets. In honor of the royal House of Orange, Dutch people dress in orange from head to toe. Villages and communities host their own block party versions of national holidays with orange streamers and balloons.

King’s Day often means enjoying a little drink for grown-ups while browsing the merchandise on sale at the flea market. For kids, the flea market is a great way to test their busking skills, Koehappen (eats a cake on a string) spiker popen (Put the string pegs on your pants into a bottle) Earn a little money. Many young Dutch people start partying the night before during King’s Night music performances.

Party-goers revel in the 2018 King’s Night at Groningen’s Stadspark. Photo credit: Traci White

Why is King’s Day a holiday?

The holiday was devised to win the favor of the then-unpopular King William III (1817-1890). In 1885, the Netherlands originally began celebrating Princess’ Day as a national holiday in honor of her daughter, Princess Wilhelmina. The first Princess’ Day was celebrated only in Utrecht, but by her 1890, when Wilhelmina ascended her throne, the name of the holiday changed to Queen’s Day.

It has been the name of this holiday for over a century. Wilhelmina’s daughter Juliana and her granddaughter Beatrix were also celebrating Queen’s Day. The current king is the first male monarch in the Netherlands since William III. Willem-Alexander had his coronation in 2013, and in 2014 the name of the holiday became King’s Day.

When is King’s Day?

Since 2014, this holiday has been celebrated on April 27th. However, the dates and names of the holidays have changed many times over the past century. Between 1885 and her 1980, Queen’s Day was celebrated on the reigning Queen’s birthday, but when Queen Beatrix was crowned in 1980, she changed her spring break to her actual birthday. decided not to. Conveniently, her son Willem-Alexander’s birthday is on her April 27th, so it wasn’t a big deal to move the Kuomintang day three days ahead of her.

1885-1890: August 31st, Princess’s Day (Princess Wilhelmina)

1890-1948: August 31 Queen’s Day (Queen Wilhelmina)

1948-1980: April 30th, Queen’s Day (Queen Juliana)

1981-2013: April 30th, Queen’s Day (Queen Beatrix)

2014-present: April 27th, King’s Day (King Willem-Alexander)

Where will the event take place?

wherever! We have put together a (non-exhaustive) list of events in Groningen, Friesland and Drenthe on King’s Night and King’s Day. Click the link below for more information.

Much is planned in the city for King’s Day (27 April).th) and King’s Night (April 26)th)

  • kings night concertRev up your engines and head for the Vismarkt. Several bands and DJs play live until the early hours of the next day. An early ball drop is scheduled for the younger ones at 20:30. You can expect a lot of music such as rap and techno.
  • If you are interested in a more solemn event, Lutheran Church in Groningen Two internationally renowned musicians, soprano Miranda van Claringen and organist Peter Piron, will perform on April 26th. Miranda sang at Willem’s Alexander and Maxima’s wedding in 2002. The concert starts at 21:30 and is open to people of all ages.
  • Groningen Orange Society Organize multiple music events king’s dayThe main stage will again be Vismarkt. In addition, the association also Free Market (9:00 to 17:00) Singel (Ubbo Emmiussingel, Praediniussingel, Ganzevoortsingel and Coehoornsingel), children’s market in Westerhaven (with music and performance).
  • Other music Austerport and in Groningen new church.
  • For an overview of smaller events planned in various regions, visit Gemiente Groningen event calendar.
  • Big King Day celebrations are planned in secretlyMusic, flea markets and special activities for children are held throughout the day.

Editor’s Note: This article was updated on April 24, 2023

https://northerntimes.nl/who-what-when-where-why-kings-day/ King’s Day – Northern Times

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