5 Days, 400 Years
November 13, 2009
Every year, New York marks "5 Dutch Days 5 Boroughs" with an array of events to celebrate the city's Dutch heritage. This year's festival has a special edge as it commemorates the quadricentennial of Henry Hudson's exploration of the area on behalf of the Dutch East India Co.
The events began Thursday with a kickoff at Brooklyn borough hall and will continue through Monday.
Scholars will discuss the connections between the Netherlands and American during the 18th century in a two-day symposium at Columbia University. Author Marc Resch presents a humorous look at Dutch culture on Saturday, while on Sunday, Dutch astronomy journalist Govert Schilling will discuss his book, "The Hunt for Planet." For those who prefer a more active approach to learning, the weekend offers walking tours of New Amsterdam and the Dutch farmhouses of Gravesend , as well as a number of site visits including tours of the oldest house in New York City and opportunities to view the library of the Huguenot Society of America and the headquarters of the Holland Society of New York.
The 5 Days feature arts event, too, such as a concert by Dutch baritone Maarten Koningsberger at Carnegie Hall Saturday night, a gallery talk on Dutch paintings at the Frick and a performance of chamber music from the Netherlands and beyond at the Brooklyn Historical. And children can participate in activities aimed at them, such as a scavenger hunt inspired by the history of Dutch Manhattan and crafts at the Alice Austen House Museum on Staten Island.
For a complete listing of the many events, go to 5 Dutch Days. Some events require RSVPs or may be sold out, so check the calendar in advance.