Tulip Time Blog https://tuliptime.com/blog 2018-08-15T13:00:03+00:00 Together https://tuliptime.com/blog/archives/2018/08/15/together 2018-08-15T13:00:03+00:00 2018-08-15T09:00:00-04:00

Two days remaining before the Tulip Time Art In Bloom (AIB) competition deadline, Cindy Awrey, a four-time top 20 AIB artist, had completed two pieces of artwork to submit for the 2018 competition. While sitting in her Bible study, she was struck with inspiration to create a piece from a graphic approach focusing on black and white. As is the case with most of her pieces, Cindy finished the piece within the day; unlike her other pieces, this piece was made with acrylic paint instead of her usual oil paint medium, as oil takes weeks to dry and she only had one day left!

To Cindy, the importance of Tulip Time is that it draws people together. Wandering through the sites of the festival, Cindy was inspired by the diversity of festival-goers. Visitors of different walks of life come together in unity for this celebration of tulips, Dutch heritage, and community. Cindy aimed to capture this aspect of Tulip Time in her piece.

Together can be interpreted many ways, but my intention is a positive message encouraging people to come together and enjoy the celebration.”

Cindy describes her winning artist experience as completely surreal; from her name being announced as the winner to seeing her artwork come to life on mugs, shirts, and posters to riding atop a vintage car in the Muziekparade, she reflects that AIB is a great boost for artists in our area and contributes significantly to the vibrant artistic culture in Holland, Michigan. 

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Submission forms are now available for the 2019 Tulip Time AIB competition. The submission deadline is October 4, 2018. Full details can be found at: www.tuliptime.com/artinbloom

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Learning, Giving, & Growing https://tuliptime.com/blog/archives/2018/07/11/learning-giving-growing 2018-07-24T15:59:01+00:00 2018-07-11T12:00:00-04:00

Hope College graduate and East-sider, Stephanie Eiler participated in her first Tulip Time Festival in 2016 as a Business Development Intern on the Tulip Time staff. Through her internship, Stephanie gained a deep understanding of the community connectivity that Tulip Time fosters here in Holland, MI. Most impactful for Stephanie was the way in which local businesses partner with Tulip Time to execute this 9 day, city-wide festival. Now in her career, Stephanie applies her learned skills of community engagement and problem solving in her role as Marketing Coordinator at GMB Architecture + Engineering, a business located right in the heart of downtown Holland and the 2018 presenting partner for the Tulip Time Dutch Dance program. Stephanie enjoys that much of the festival, including parades and Dutch Dance performances, happens right in front of her new office location. To Stephanie, evening Dutch Dance performances are like the mecca of Tulip Time where students, co-workers, families, and visitors from across the globe all share in the experience of Tulip Time.

“Our culture at GMB Architecture + Engineering is centered around learning, giving, and growing; therefore giving back to the community is an important part of our culture. We feel we are doing that when we invest in Tulip Time.”

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The Michigan Mule https://tuliptime.com/blog/archives/2018/05/10/michigan-mule 2018-05-21T15:56:53+00:00 2018-05-10T13:23:54-04:00

It’s no secret that Michigan’s favorite cocktail is the Moscow Mule. With only three ingredients, it’s super easy to make at home and is one of our go-to party cocktails.

Coppercraft Distillery is the Spirit of Tulip Time and they created a flavorful new twist on this summertime favorite for those who like their cocktails with more of a Midwest vibe, or for those who just don’t like vodka.

The Michigan Mule is a highly refreshing alternative to the Moscow Mule. It’s made exactly the same as the Moscow version, only instead of 2 oz. of vodka, you use 2 oz. of Coppercraft Applejack.


Michigan Mule
(serves one)

2 oz.Coppercraft Applejack
6 oz.ginger beer
1/2 oz.lime juice
  1. Squeeze lime juice into a Mule mug and drop in the spent shell.
  2. Add crushed ice.
  3. Pour in the Applejack and fill with cold ginger beer.
  4. Serve with a stirring rod.
  5. Consume with joy.


If you’ve never had Applejack, this is a great time to try it. Aside from being tasty, Coppercraft puts it in a very, very pretty bottle.

Pick up a Michigan Mule at the following restaurants, or make one at home!

Michigan Mule Makers

  • Brew Merchant
  • Big E’s Sports Grill
  • Boatwerks
  • Butch’s Dry Dock
  • Crazy Horse
  • Hops
  • Ottawa Beach Inn
  • Perreddies
  • Curragh
  • Public 
  • Seventy Six
  • Coppercraft Distillery

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Rethink. Reuse. Recycle. https://tuliptime.com/blog/archives/2018/05/01/rethink-reuse-recycle 2018-05-06T15:32:47+00:00 2018-05-01T09:50:33-04:00


Tulip Time Conservation partner, Holland Board of Public Works, will be at the Family Rest Area on 8th Street, during the May 10 Kinderparade with games and great prizes for all ages. Join HBPW for your chance to win!

Are you wondering how you will navigate experiencing all that Tulip Time has to offer? Rethink your transportation choice by taking the MAX Tulip Time shuttle. The shuttle not only offers you optimal convenience for getting around the festival, but it’s also better for the environment. By using public transportation you’ll save time avoiding traffic and parking lanes, and also reduce your carbon emissions. Be sure to check out the interactive map for details and routes so you can plan your Tulip Time activities now https://www.tuliptime.com/visit/transportation

As you explore the Tulip Time Festival, you will find water bottle filling stations available for free. Be sure to bring a refillable water bottle for reuse. No need to buy disposable bottles when you can conveniently refill! Additionally, you will find recycling bins around the festival, promoting stewardship of our resources. Be sure to recycle acceptable materials.

Lastly, Holland BPW’s annual drive through, drop-off Recycle Rewards event will be happening Saturday, May 19th from 8-noon at the Service Center (625 Hastings Ave) parking lot — right after Tulip Time! We will accept and give HBPW customers rebates for working refrigerators, freezers, window air conditioners, and dehumidifiers. We will also accept old holiday lights, anything 50% metal or more, and electronics. TVs or computer monitors will not be accepted. For a complete item list, visit padnos.com/recycling-centers.

Remember to Rethink, Reuse, Recycle:  See you at Tulip Time!

Morgan Kelley, Holland Board of Public Works
Morgan Kelley is the Conservation Programs Specialist at the Holland Board of Public Works where she tracks and administers residential energy efficiency programs, and represents HBPW at community events.

Environmental Sustainability initiatives

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Red Tulip https://tuliptime.com/blog/archives/2018/04/26/nhb-red-tulip 2018-04-28T14:43:54+00:00 2018-04-26T11:16:51-04:00

New Holland's Red Tulip — first brewed in 2005. And the history of Red Tulip as a celebratory beer is much like the rest of our town at this time of year: festive and welcoming. 

The best mark of hospitality is an offering of comfort and Red Tulip has that attribute as a corner stone of its flavor. Nice sweet malts with just a hint of toastiness in the finish greets locals and tourists alike. The beer is nice and smooth with a creamy head that pillows atop the beer, but the finest quality of this offering during a time where every pupil in Ottawa County is focused on a dazzling array of colors is its ruby hue. A moderate ABV of 5% encourages several rounds for all comers. 

From a historical perspective this beer has always served the purpose of quenching the thirst of Tulip Time Festival goers. With 17 Tulip Times under our belt at our downtown Holland location it is always exciting to celebrate with so many of our neighbors and mark the beginning of a long, beautiful season on the lakeshore. Red Tulip is our expression of that excitement. We are fortunate to see so many Tulip Time attendees at the Pub on 8th so it brings us great pleasure to offer this beer during a time when Holland welcomes travelers from all over the world. Nothing less than a world class beer would be a proper welkom!

Here’s a list of local establishments where you can enjoy the Red Tulip!

  • Pub on 8th
  • Sharkees
  • Big E’s
  • Curragh
  • Brew Merchant
  • City Flats Hotel
  • Butch’s Dry Dock
  • Salt & Pepper
  • Sandy Point Beach House
  • Crazy Horse
  • DoubleTree Holland
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Discovering the treasures https://tuliptime.com/blog/archives/2018/04/15/treasures 2018-04-15T16:00:01+00:00 2018-04-15T12:00:00-04:00

In July 1971, Bonnie Fraam met the love of her life, a kindhearted man from a small town in West Michigan. Married in 1972, the Fraams returned to Michigan shortly thereafter to raise their family and put down roots in the vibrant community they would come to call home. Quickly, their family embraced the tradition of Tulip Time. Over the years, Bonnie’s children and grandchildren have played their roles in the festival—first as Dutch street scrubbers in the Kinderparade, then as Dutch Dancers and members of the band. Bonnie fondly recalls setting up chairs each year in front of The Warm Friend, where her husband worked, to sit with a merry group of residents and watch their children pass by in the parade. Today, Bonnie finds joy in playing a more active role in the festival herself—serving at the welcome desk, selling tickets for Tulip City Tours and assisting with Pedal the Provinces. For Bonnie, each aspect of the festival represents a treasured piece of Holland’s beauty and heritage. When tourists ask, Bonnie insists everyone visit Windmill Island, which she describes as an experience unlike any other. After all, Holland’s windmill is the only functional windmill in America, sent over after WWII, the scars of Nazi bullets riddled through its blades. Holland is full of stories from a time long passed but still celebrated, and Bonnie continues to cherish discovering those treasures.

“Downtown Holland is one of the most beautiful cities I’ve ever seen. I’ve lived in a lot of big cities, and it is so telling that a small town festival like ours has gained world-renown. I am so proud to call myself a Hollander.”

Bonnie Fraam
Senior Citizen
Tulip Time Volunteer
Holland Resident

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Intentional Celebration https://tuliptime.com/blog/archives/2018/04/14/intentional 2018-04-14T20:07:19+00:00 2018-04-14T16:04:16-04:00

A successful Detroit businessman, Saleem Usmani planned on relocating with his pregnant wife to Chicago to start their family. However, on the way to his job interview, Saleem stopped to chat with a growing furniture company in West Michigan. Four hours later, Saleem accepted a position with Herman Miller, convinced the company provided the opportunities he sought and the region provided the community he desired for raising a family. A few years later, Saleem embarked with his growing family to enjoy their first Tulip Time. The Usmanis were enchanted by the stunning tulip blooms and the rich culture preserved and celebrated throughout the festival. According to Indian tradition, flowers carry meaning, often speaking to purity and innocence. As a result, flowers are cherished throughout India, particularly those blooms not native to the country: many Indians have never seen a tulip before in their lives. For Saleem, this means Tulip Time not only has something to treasure of Dutch culture, but something to celebrate of Indian culture as well. Perhaps that is why Saleem finds such joy in managing volunteer efforts to assist tourists, and particularly Indian tourists, in enjoying the festival. From helping tourists plan their days to assisting in the coordinating of meals that suit their cultural dietary requirements, Saleem never tires of introducing people who share his culture to the region of the world that has shaped his family’s community.

“Ever since my first Tulip Time experience, I have been amazed by the diverse array of cultures drawn to the festival, and I love that culture is celebrated so intentionally throughout Tulip Time.”

Saleem Usmani
Herman Miller Employee
Tulip Time Volunteer
Zeeland Resident

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Connecting heritage & community https://tuliptime.com/blog/archives/2018/04/10/connecting 2018-04-14T20:09:32+00:00 2018-04-10T05:59:27-04:00

Steve Bulthuis and his daughter Bethany carry a long and proud history with the Dutch community of Holland. Steve’s great, great, great grandfather sailed with Albertus Van Raalte from the Netherlands to found Holland, Mi in 1847. For Steve, Tulip Time carries the traditions of that time forward. Steve remembers walking as a child in the Kinderparade and the year that President Ford came to participate in the festivities. So many memories with Steve’s family and community revolve around the annual festival. Senior year of high school, Steve and his friends created quite a stir when they joined Dutch dancing as a group of high school sweethearts. Today, Steve watches Bethany march in those same parades and join her own friends in carrying on the Dutch Dancing of the festival. 

For Bethany, participating in the parades and offering tours of the DeZwaan windmill is about connecting with her family heritage and her community. As a senior in high school, Bethany has already worn through her first pair of wooden shoes, and likely, she’ll wear through another. For Bethany and Steve, Tulip Time will always be a time of returning to their roots. Hopefully, there will always be a Bulthuis to join the dance.

“During Tulip Time, the stores along 8th Street have ‘wooden shoe parking’ for all of the Dutch Dancers so we can slip off our wooden shoes without scuffing up the floors. I love that the whole town joins together to embrace the festival in that way.”

Bethany Bulthuis
Holland Christian Senior
Dutch Dancer
Holland Resident

“This community’s heritage is such a vibrant part of who we are—down to our name. When I host state and federal officials for work, I always try to bring them to town during Tulip Time. The culture of this place is unlike anywhere else, and people love to participate in what makes us who we are.”

Steve Bulthuis
Macatawa Area Coordinating Council
Former Dutch Dancer
Holland Resident

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Join the Dance https://tuliptime.com/blog/archives/2018/03/join-the-dance 2018-04-10T13:44:28+00:00 2018-03-14T16:30:00-04:00

The Tulip Time story starts with a school teacher and 100,000 tulip bulbs. Lida Rogers taught high school biology in Holland, Michigan. It was 1927 when Lida first advocated for a town flower to commemorate Holland’s unique heritage and a festival day for the town to celebrate tulips together. Two years later (1929), the city council planted 100,000 tulips in preparation for Tulip Day.

Much has grown over 89 years. Today, Tulip Time celebrates over 5 million tulips each year. Now, we commemorate our heritage with 700 klompen dancers, each dressed in authentic Dutch regalia to represent the different provinces of the Netherlands. The festival spans nine days, conducting parades, igniting fireworks and drawing together national talent, diverse cultures and people from all over the country. We’ve been heralded as the nation’s Best Flower Festival, America’s Best Small Town Festival and even the 2017 Tulip Festival of the Year. Each year, our story keeps unfolding, embracing new people and new stories, celebrating difference and welkoming all to Holland, Michigan and inviting everyone to join the dance.

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