By Isabella Baugh
This year, Pella hosted their 83rd annual Tulip Time Festival. Tulip Time is an authentic celebration that takes visitors and locals back to the lives of those living in a small European village of the Netherlands, where everything was Dutch. The streets of Pella overflow with the aroma of authentic Dutch foods, Dutch costumes, Dutch markets, Dutch dancing, and the clicking sounds of the Duchess wooden shoes, along with many other traditions, exhibits, and performances.
Tulip Time isn’t only popular among the tourists, but for those who live in Pella as well. A recent survey showed that 80% of PC students participated in Tulip Time in some way, such as parades, food stands, Duchesses, ect.
For many, the traditions of Tulip Time have a unique meaning or representation. “I love getting to relive the best parts of my childhood as I grew up in Pella and have never missed a Tulip Time,” Sophomore Emily Van Beek said. “I also really love getting to see how unique our town is by watching all of the tourists gawk over everything.”
Juniors Abby Ambroson and Lucas Bandstra also have very different takes on the festival. “I love so many things about Tulip Time!” said Ambroson. “I’m not Dutch and I don’t live in Pella, so the unique culture found downtown during the month of May is not something I’ve grown up with. I also love Dutch Ribbons and all the food stands, plus walking around with your friends,”
The festival not only celebrates Dutch heritage, but does an incredible job of uniting cultures of all kinds. “My favorite part about Tulip Time is watching everyone buy Chinese food from Oriental, even though this is a Dutch Celebration,” commented Lucas Bandstra.
Food was overwhelmingly the favorite part about Tulip Time for PC students, along with hanging out with friends. Poffertjies was their top food choice, with over 30% of the vote. Stroopwafels, funnel cakes, tacos, and the triple threat were among other popular treats. Senior Hanna De Bruin just appreciates the variety of food in general. “Everything in moderation,” she said.
While many like the food, nearly nobody likes waiting in the long lines for the food stands, although junior Ivy Terpstra’s least favorite part was the festival being over.