This year I watched the parades and Dutch dancers for the very first time—and what fun! The young people seem to really enjoy dressing up in traditional Dutch costumes and putting on a show. The Holland High School marching band performs a dance routine to “Tiptoe Through the Tulips” (what else!) and march the entire parade route in klompen. There is also delicious Dutch food to sample as well as all the usual parade treats like corn dogs and elephant ears.
The flower gardens all around town are magnificent with tulips in nearly every color of the rainbow. The city designates certain public streets as “tulip lanes” for those who want to drive around and see even more flowers. And of course the gardens at Holland’s Windmill Island are spectacular. DeZwaan is a genuine Dutch windmill built in 1761 and brought over to Holland, Michigan 50 years ago to become the city’s centerpiece.
I had a lot of fun but I was also hard at work. I’m currently researching my next novel, which just happens to feature a family of Dutch immigrants who come to Michigan in 1847 and settle the town of Holland. Who says researching historical novels isn’t fun?