According to the parade organizers, each float includes a staggering half a million dahlias. Floats can be as large as 20 meters, or around 65 feet, long and nine meters, nearly 30 feet, tall. Volunteers create the floats beginning in May to get ready for the parade in early September. But the flowers can only be put on the floats during the last three days leading up to the parade, which makes for a crazy few days for the hundreds of people from each of the 20 districts that participate.
Related: Millions of blooms revive Van Gogh in breathtaking Corso Zundert flower parade
While 20 floats were entered, two weren’t able to roll down the parade route in 2016 due to strong winds. Dangerous Transportation, constructed by the Tiggelaar hamlet, won the day. Floats ranged from rollicking animal designs to a Gothic building caught in a whirlwind to a woman being retouched. One float even offered a commentary on climate change. The statement for second place winner Manpower 12 says, “Human intervention contributes to climate change. It’s not only the force of nature that smashes ships to pieces on a stormy sea, but also the force of mankind.”
While around 30 flower parades take place in the Netherlands, Zundert is home to the largest, and it is also where artist Vincent van Gogh was born. Corso Zundert is judged by “an independent and professional jury” comprised of people with backgrounds in theater or art. According to the parade organizers, “…for people in Zundert, winning the parade is among the best experiences in life.”
+ Corso Zundert
Images courtesy of Malou Evers, Werner Pellis, and Erwin Martens/Corso Zundert