Tulip Festival concerts will open 2016 Onstage Orange City summer series


Four bands will perform during Tulip Festival to kick off the Orange City Arts Council’s annual summer series, Onstage Orange City.

Photo above courtesy of The Sioux County Capital-Democrat

Usual Suspects 2015Orange City’s own Usual Suspects will perform on Wednesday night, May 18, during the Tulip Festival Cruise-in Car Show. The concert will begin at 6 p.m. and will take place on Central Avenue.  The band plays a variety of musical styles, including classic acoustic-based pop and rock, blues, contemporary folk and original songs. The Usual Suspects will also perform during Tulip Festival’s ArtBurst event on Saturday, May 21, from 10 a.m. to noon and 4 to 6 p.m. in the Straatmarkt.


Mankato Riverblenders (2)The Mankato Riverblenders Barbershop Chorus will entertain on Thursday night, May 19. The group has provided “family entertainment through barbershop harmony” since 1973. They’ve performed all over the Midwest, as well as in Canada, England and Wales. A 35-member chorus will provide A cappella music in three sets: gospel, patriotic and modern. Two quartets from the group will sing between sets, one of which has excelled in both district and international competitions.


Now Serving 7 photo

Now Serving 7, a Christian electro-coustic pop/rock band, will take the stage on Friday night, May 20.  They have performed with artists including Jeremy Camp and Superchick, and have also performed at official NASCAR events.  Making their fourth consecutive-year appearance at Tulip Festival, Now Serving 7 will perform songs from their current album, “I Will Go.”



Bella RuseBella Ruse will close the Tulip Festival concert series on Saturday night, May 21. The music of Orange City native Joseph Barker and his wife, Kay, is described as a “combination of airy folk and crunchy pop.” Kay’s “antique voice” and Joseph’s “mournful guitar,” combined with an array of instruments including a typewriter, suitcase organ, glockenspiel and kazoos, have earned them national recognition. Bella Ruse has traveled across the United States to perform concerts and radio tours and has been recognized as a “must-see act.”


The concerts on May 19, 20 and 21 will take place at the band shell in Windmill Park at 7:30 p.m., and there is no cost to attend. The rain location for the concerts is the Orange City Town Hall.


Onstage Orange City is a program sponsored by the Orange City Arts Council, and brings in local, regional, national and international artists to perform throughout the summer. To view a full schedule for the 2016 season, visit www.orangecityarts.net. This summer will mark the seventh year of Onstage Orange City.

Tulip Festival will host Cruise-In Car Show


The Orange City Tulip Festival will host a cruise-in car show as a kick-off to its 76th annual celebration on Wednesday, May 18. The annual cruise-in car show, a long-standing event at Tulip Festival, will begin at 6 p.m. on Second Street North and Central Avenue in Orange City.

Individuals who own and maintain classic cars are welcome to join the event. The Tri-State Cruisers will also join the car show. Pre-registration is not required for the cruise-in. There is no entry fee for the show, and a freewill donation will be collected for the local Relay for Life chapter.

Orange City’s own Usual Suspects will provide musical entertainment during the event.

Questions about the cruise-in car show can be directed to the Tulip Festival office at 712-707-4510.

Celebration at Stadscentrum set for May 4

Stadscentrum 7.4.15

An open house at Stadscentrum is set for Wednesday, May 4 in celebration of its one year anniversary. The event will take place from 5 to 7:30 p.m.

Located on the corner of Central Avenue and Second Street North in Orange City, Stadscentrum, or “city center,” opened in May of 2015. The building is home to Orange City’s wooden shoe carving equipment and 107-year-old Dutch street organ. Two kiosks in Stadscentrum depict the history of Tulip Festival through photos, narrative and artifacts. Several mounted photos also show the history and vibrancy of Orange City.

In its inaugural year, visitors from nearly 20 states and more than 10 countries have toured Stadscentrum, both during Tulip Festival and throughout the year. In addition to visitor tours, a variety of events and activities have taken place at Stadscentrum, including the 2016 Tulip Court election, a trick-or-treat photo booth, Tour of Trees during the holiday season, Sinterklaas Day, and Tulip Festival Dutch costume exchange.

The Dutch street organ will be played and wooden shoe carving demonstrations will take place during the open house.

The Orange City Dutch Heritage Boosters will also serve poffertjes at the Little White Store on May 4 from 5:30 to 7:30 p.m.

Questions about the Stadscentrum open house can be directed to the Orange City Chamber of Commerce/Tulip Festival office at 712-707-4510.

Adult Dutch Dance practice dates are set for Tulip Festival 2016


Photo courtesy of The Sioux County Capital-Democrat.

The Tulip Festival Steering Committee invites adults, college-age and older, to participate in the Adult Dutch Dance portion of this year’s Straat Feest. Both new and returning dancers are welcome and encouraged to join.

Adult Dutch Dance practice dates are set for six Monday evenings, beginning in April. The dates include April 11, 18 and 25, as well as May 2, 9, and 16. Each practice will be held from 6:00 p.m. to 6:50 p.m. at the Orange City Town Hall.

Authentic Dutch costumes are required for participants. Participants are encouraged to find their own dancing partner, but assistance will be provided if needed.

Questions can be directed to the Tulip Festival office at 712-707-4510.

2016 Parade Marshal Introduced

2016 Parade MarshalThe Tulip Festival Steering Committee is pleased to honor Brian De Jong as the parade marshal for 2016, as announced at the  Tulip Festival Extravaganza on Wednesday, March 16.

A native and lifelong resident of Orange City, De Jong rode floats and carried cheese in the Dutch Heritage Walk as a young boy.

De Jong’s involvement with the festival since has proven significant, as he’s volunteered in a variety of capacities. He’s carried province flags in the parades, pushed “De Bloomenmarkt” cart in the Dutch Heritage Walk, assisted with the Night Show, Dutch danced, and guided city bus tours.

2016 Parade Marshal (2)

Photo courtesy of the Sioux County Capital-Democrat.

His longest-standing role as a Tulip Festival volunteer, however, is his time working in the Windmill Information Booth. “My favorite job at Tulip Festival? I loved so many, but if I were to narrow it down, it has to be the Windmill Information Booth,” says De Jong.

De Jong has sold tickets, given directions and answered Tulip Festival questions in the Windmill Information Booth for more than 20 years. “I love meeting the many visitors – finding out where they are from, how they heard about the festival, and seeing the excitement they have while visiting,” he says.

“Brian’s dedication to Tulip Festival is remarkable,” says Mike Hofman, Chairman of the 2016 Steering Committee. “He is a great ambassador for the festival, and we are grateful for the many ways he has served our community’s celebration.”

In addition to riding in each of the festival’s six parades as the 2016 parade marshal, De Jong will continue his role with the Windmill Information Booth, coordinating volunteers and greeting thousands of visitors.

2016 Tulip Court Costumes Revealed

vb-020-Edit-webQueen Ava Grossmann and her Court will wear the authentic 1880s Protestant dress from South Beveland for the 2016 Tulip Festival. Image courtesy of Generations – Portraiture and Weddings. 

The annual Orange City Tulip Festival Extravaganza was held Wednesday, March 16, at Prairie Winds Event Center. The event featured a luncheon and program during which the costumes for the 2016 Tulip Queen and Court were revealed and the 2016 parade marshal was introduced.

Members of the 2016 Tulip Court are Queen Ava Grossmann, daughter of Jonathan and Glenda Grossmann; Maddie Christy, daughter of Greg and Michelle Christy; Grace De Haan, daughter of Brent and Patti De Haan; Kelsey Lang, daughter of Chris and Sherry Lang; and Kaylee Puttmann, daughter of Shannon and Kristen Puttmann.

Queen Ava and her Court will wear the authentic 1880s Protestant dress from South Beveland for this year’s festival. Queen Ava is wearing the formal dress and her Court is wearing the informal dress. This is the first time the informal costume has been introduced at Tulip Festival, as the Tulip Courts of 1981 and 1993 wore the formal South Beveland costumes.

The Court’s costume is made of a black woolen fabric, while Queen Ava’s is made from a black flowered brocade fabric.  Queen Ava’s bib, or “buek” in Dutch, is made of a mulberry colored floral fabric, and the Court’s of a floral cotton fabric. The bib is covered by a scarf, or “doek,” made of the same fabric.

2016 Tulip Court in Costume (2)The costume’s skirts are covered by hand-shirred aprons, with Queen Ava’s apron made of a black woolen fabric and the Court’s made of a black and white striped cotton fabric. Queen Ava’s costume also includes a petticoat made of plain color flannel.

All five members of the Tulip Court wear an ear iron, or “oorijzer,” made of jewelry’s brass. A white under cap is worn over the ear iron. The most prominent piece of the hat is a rounded “hul,” held in place by pearl hat pins. Queen Ava’s is made of a white lace fabric and her Court’s are made from a white eyelet fabric.  The hats are also adorned with two large, gold-head hat pins.

The South Beveland dresses are accessorized with red, five-strand necklaces and black velvet purses. Queen Ava also wears knitted arm warmers and a gold broach.

The 2016 Tulip Court also presented their traveling road show titled “Tournament of Tulips” for the first time. The road show, which the festival royalty wrote and will present to various organizations, schools and residential care facilities this spring,  tells of the events and attractions at Tulip Festival and gives a detailed overview of their South Beveland costumes.

2016 Tulip Festival Extravaganza to be held March 16

Extravaganza Centerpiece

The annual Tulip Festival Extravaganza is set for Wednesday, March 16. The event will take place from 11:45 a.m. to 12:45 p.m. at Prairie Winds Event Center, and will feature a luncheon and program.


The province of Queen Ava Grossmann and her royal Court’s costumes will be revealed and they will present their traveling road show. In addition, the Tulip Festival Steering Committee will introduce the 2016 Parade Marshal.


Tickets for the event are $15 each through March 4, and $20 each beginning March 5. Tickets can be purchased at the Tulip Festival office.

Craft Show to take place during 2016 Tulip Festival



The Tulip Festival Steering Committee is pleased to announce that a craft show will return to this year’s list of events during the festival. The craft show will take place from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. on Saturday, May 21, in the basement of Iowa State Bank.


Individuals who create handmade, original crafts are invited to apply for the craft show, and are encouraged to include Dutch items as a portion of their items to sell. Only handmade, original items will be accepted into the show, and no food or beverage items will be accepted.


Applications for the craft show are open until March 15. Applications from individuals meeting the craft show requirements will be accepted on a first come, first served basis as space is limited. Individuals accepted will be notified by April 1, and an entry fee of $35 will be due by April 15 following acceptance.


For more information or to apply, visit the Craft Show Application page.

Area artists invited to apply to exhibit work during ArtBurst


Artists from the four-state region and beyond are invited to apply to exhibit their work at ArtBurst during the Orange City Tulip Festival.


Scheduled for 9 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. on Saturday, May 21, ArtBurst is a juried exhibition of fine art. Tens of thousands of people are expected attend the three-day Tulip Festival May 19–21, and thousands browse the artists’ booths set up on the grounds of the historic Sioux County Courthouse on Saturday.


Applications will be accepted from anyone who produces original fine art. All art must be designed and created by the exhibiting artist. ArtBurst artists will be chosen by a jury, which will make its selections based on the aesthetic quality of the art and the number of artists in each medium. The application deadline is March 1, and applicants will be notified of the jury’s decision by April 1.


To apply, submit a completed application form, four photos showing the artist’s work, a photo of the artist’s booth, a $10 non-refundable check for the jury fee, and a $50 check for each 10-by-10-foot booth space. Checks should be made out to the Orange City Tulip Festival, with “ArtBurst” on the memo line, and mailed to Orange City Tulip Festival, Attn: ArtBurst Coordinator, 509 8th Street SE, Orange City, IA 51041.


Artists may apply online at octulipfestival.com. For more information or for a copy of the ArtBurst brochure, email artburst@octulipfestival.com or call 712-707-4510.

2016 Tulip Festival ticket sales begin February 1

2016 Tickets on Sale

Tickets for the 2016 Tulip Festival Extravaganza, Night Show and reserved parade seating will go on sale Monday, Feb. 1. Ticket sales will begin at 9 a.m. at the Orange City Tulip Festival/Chamber of Commerce office. The 76th annual Tulip Festival will take place May 19-21.

The annual Tulip Festival Extravaganza will take place Wednesday, March 16, from 11:45 a.m. to 12:45 p.m. The event will include a luncheon and program at Prairie Winds Event Center. Tickets are $15 each through March 4, and $20 each beginning March 5.

Tickets for the 2016 Night Show, “West Side Story,” are $20 each. The production will take place at the Unity Christian Knight Center May 18-21, beginning at 8 p.m.

Reserved parade seats are $4 each. Seats are reserved beginning at 1 p.m. each day of the festival, and are reserved for Straat Feest, street scrubbing and the afternoon volksparade.

Value ticket books will also be available for purchase Feb. 1. The books include tickets to eight festival attractions and hold a value of $26, but are sold for $15 each.

All tickets for the Night Show and parade are reserved, and all are sold on a first come, first served basis. Questions can be directed to the Tulip Festival office at 712-707-4510, and more information can be found at www.octulipfestival.com.

“West Side Story” is based on a conception of Jerome Robbins. Book by Arthur Laurents. Music by Leonard Bernstein. Lyrics by Stephen Sondheim. Entire original production directed and choreographed by Jerome Robbins. Originally produced on Broadway by Robert E. Griffith and Harold S. Prince by arrangement with Roger L. Stevens.

“West Side Story” is presented through special arrangement with Music Theatre International (MTI). All authorized performance materials are also supplied by MTI. 421 West 54th Street, New York, NY 10019. Phone: 212-541-4684. Fax: 212-397-4684. www. MTIShows.com