Thursday, March 26, 2015

Sunburst Oranges Presents: Netherlands’ Orange Festival

Every year, on the 30th of April, the Dutch people celebrate an Orange Festival, which they called "Queen's Day" (or Koninginnedag) with cultural music, free market, and general joviality. But this year's "Queen's Day" is different, because the festival was specially organized to honour Her Majesty Queen Beatrix of the Netherlands of her Silver Anniversary Jubilee. Being the 25th Anniversary of the Orange is the colour of the their Royal family. You can see that the Amsterdam’s streets, roads, parks and canals come alive in a sea of Orange. It is preferable if not mandatory to wear orange during this national event of the Amsterdam Orange Festival. 

Although Queen's Day is the national holiday celebrating the Queen's Birthday, a tradition begun initially to honour the previous Queen Juliana (the mother of current Queen Beatrix), it has been specifically related with the Royal Orange Celebration-the colour which splashes across the country-represents happiness, zest, success, and creativity, and also the hospitality of the Dutch people.

From 1890 to 2013, the day was known as Koninginnedag or Queen's Day. The holiday was first observed on 31 August 1885 as Prinsessedag or Princess's Day, the fifth birthday of Princess Wilhelmina, heir to the Dutch throne. On her accession, the holiday acquired the name Koninginnedag. When held on 31 August the holiday was the final day of school summer vacation, leading to its popularity among children. 

Following the accession of Wilhelmina's daughter Juliana in 1948, the holiday was moved to Queen Juliana's birthday on 30 April. Her daughter, Beatrix retained the celebration on 30 April after she ascended the throne in 1980, despite her actual birthday occurring on 31 January. Beatrix altered her mother's custom of receiving a floral parade near a Royal palace, instead choosing to visit different Dutch towns each year and join in the festivities along with her sons.

In 2009, the Queen was carrying out this custom in the city of Apeldoorn when Karst Tates attempted to attack her by trying to ram at the Royal family's bus with his car; instead he drove into a crowd of people who were watching the parade, and fatally crashed into a monument. Seven people in the crowd were killed, and the car's driver also died soon afterwards.

Queen Beatrix abdicated on Koninginnedag 2013 which led to the accession of the first King since the observance of the national holiday, King Willem-Alexander. As a result, the holiday became known as Koningsdag from 2014 and the celebration was shifted three days ahead to 27 April, the birthday of King Willem-Alexander.

Koningsdag is known for its nationwide "free market", at which many Dutch people sell their secondhand items. It is also an opportunity for "orange madness" or oranjegekte, for the national colour, when the normally strait-laced Dutch let down their hair, often dyed orange for the occasion.

Are you looking for the perfect gift for business associates, family or friends? You don’t have to travel to the Netherlands, you can get them right on our website. A quick visit to can solve all of your fresh gift giving adventures. We sell only the finest selections and the freshest citrus you can buy. Direct from our trees to your home.

Presented By:
Sunburst Oranges
180 South “E” Street
Porterville, CA  93257

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