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It’s Queen’s Day in the Netherlands

In 2008, Her Majesty Queen Beatrix rang Eurodam's bell to signal the release of the champagne bottle to be broken against the side of the ship.

Today, April 30, is the Netherlands’ national holiday Konninginen dag (Queen’s day). Today we celebrate the birthday of Queen Beatrix. It’s not Her Majesty’s official birthday, she was born Jan. 31, 1938. April 30 was the birthday of Her Majesty’s mother, Queen Juliana. When Queen Juliana abdicated, Her Majesty ordered that April 30 stays Queen’s Day to honor her mother and much-loved Queen Juliana.

Queen’s Day is celebrated with traditional free markets. People can sell their used stuff on the streets (compare it to a yard sale). There are large parties with live music, old Dutch games, funfair and fire works. Also, special orange-colored pastries are made. And a liqueur, Oranje Bitter, is drunk. Traditionally people wear something orange.

On the day itself, Her Majesty and her family visit two cities to celebrate Queen’s Day with the people. It is broadcast on national television.

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