Saturday, 12 September 2015

Bloemencorso Zundert Flower Parade

Bloemencorso Zundert Flower Parade

It’s amazing what a bunch of cardboard, wire, and flowers can do. Step into the Bloemencorso Zundert, and you’ll be blown away by huge, imaginative sculptures painstakingly covered with multi-colored dahlia blooms in intricate detail. The biggest of its kind in the world, the Zundert Flower Festival truly belittles every other flower festival there exists.

Held every first Sunday of September, the Bloemencorso Zundert is the life and love of the small-town community of Zundert, Netherlands, where the festival takes its roots. Everyone in town is part of the event, and each district competes with another in this massive design contest. Preparation for the festival is a year-long affair, reaching its most excited state during summer, when float construction takes place. It is this time that hundreds of volunteers are gathered to work all summer long. Since the flowers have to be fresh for the big day, volunteers can only begin to plaster the thousands of dahlias on the float on the Thursday before the parade. Since winning the competition is equivalent to the biggest prestige you can earn in town, the townspeople work their best to bring their wondrous sculptures to completion

On the day of the parade, the winning float is stopped in its tracks by the judges, resulting in numerous emotional breakdowns of the victorious participants. After the parade, the floats are parked outside for public exhibition for another day. The next day they are demolished to bits, and the cycle starts anew.