If you’ve ever explored the lakeside city of Holland during springtime, you know that its gorgeous tulips are nothing short of breathtaking. In fact, these vibrant blooms are so key to the culture of the area that they’ve inspired the famous Tulip Time Festival, which draws hundreds of thousands of visitors to West Michigan each year.
Unfortunately, the 2020 Tulip Time Festival has been canceled for the first time since the event was founded more than 90 years ago. While most of us won’t have the chance to enjoy Holland’s beloved springtime tradition this time around, we can be grateful for gorgeous photography and virtual tours from years past that allow us to appreciate the sights of the season from afar.
The Tulip Time Festival began in 1929 and has paid homage to Holland’s Dutch heritage for decades. Founded by local teacher Lida Rogers, Tulip Time has become a well-loved tradition for locals and out-of-towners alike who want to appreciate the area’s annual blooms.
Each year, upwards of five million tulips fill the city with glorious color, serving as a backdrop for photos, Dutch Dance performances, carnival rides, and so much more. Children of all ages participate in parades through downtown Holland while onlookers enjoy delightful junk food and snap photos. There’s a real sense of community during this early May gathering that simply can’t be beat.
When we say that tulips are at the heart of Tulip Time, we really mean it: in fact, visitors can face fines for damaging any of the city’s blooms, which are planted like clockwork each year in anticipation of the springtime fest. With stunning spots like Veldheer Gardens and Window on the Waterfront offering access to seemingly endless fields of blossoms, it’s easy to get lost in a sea of tulips during your time in Holland.
This year, though, the streets of the city will remain eerily quiet as tulips begin to peek out through the soil. With the unprecedented cancellation of Tulip Time, many Michiganders are missing the chance to peruse the area’s famous fields and “Tulip Lanes,” which typically bustle with passersby and amateur photographers. It’s a May atmosphere that’s wholly unfamiliar to Holland residents.
If you find yourself longing for a dose of tulip-inspired beauty but can’t head to West Michigan for an in-person view, there’s reason celebrate: the City of Holland offers a virtual Tulip Lane tour via YouTube that allows viewers to enjoy the sights of spring along six miles of flower-dotted streets. While the video was released last May, it captures the splendor of Holland’s springtime season and offers a sense of hope during a difficult time.
While life in Michigan might be a bit different these days, there’s no denying that many communities have proven their resilience in recent weeks. As we grieve the loss of traditions and gatherings this year, we can confidently look forward to future events and brighter spirits.
Are there any other virtual tours we should know about? Share your thoughts and suggestions by filling out our nomination form here. Then be sure to check out fascinating drone footage of an amazing uninhabited island right here in Michigan.
Address: Holland, MI 49423, USA