“What do flowers and bicycles have in common?” This is the line which the events accompanying the King’s Day celebrations in Bucharest will take this year. The Dutch passion for flowers is well known, and it’s not for nothing that the Netherlands is the world’s largest exporter of flowers and plants. It’s also THE innovation leader in this area. Huge amounts are spent every year in the creation of new plant varieties and improvement of existing ones, in order to meet the market demand and the consumers’ expectations.
Once you land in the Netherlands, after having admired the colourful flower fields from the sky, you are struck by something else: the huge number of bikes and bikers! Yes, bikes are the most convenient and efficient transport means in a densely populated and lively country like the Netherlands.
If you happen to be in the Netherlands on King’s Day, you will also be overwhelmed by the orange colour that is present everywhere during the celebrations.
This year in Bucharest, the Netherlands Embassy is organising a series of events that bring together some of the elements and concepts that are dear to the Dutch: flowers, bicycles, mobility, and the circular economy approach which nowadays should be part of each and every activity in our societies and economies.
The Embassy, with its traditional partner for this event – Business Development Group, continued with the organisation of the well-known National Flower Arrangement Contest which reached its 10th edition. Being an anniversary edition, this year needed to be extra-special. And even more accessible to the public at large. So the concept was changed, and besides the traditional contest also bicycles were added. Not just as means of transport, but also as support for the flower decorations.
So fans of flowers and bikes are all welcome to join the event at Promenada Mall today, April 24, starting at 9:30! The group of decorated bikes will be ridden at noon by Ambassador Stella Ronnner Grubacic and her team to the location of SOS Satele Copiilor, where they will be donated. Actually the children of this foundation have also been included in the day events, with lively artistic moments.
In the afternoon, Dutch Master Florist Bart van der Elsken will be performing a flower arrangement demonstration. Bart returns to Bucharest after ten years, as he was the one participating in the first edition. A lot has happened in the 10 year span, both in Romania and the Netherlands. If we want it or not, if we realise it or not, global challenges have become part of our daily lives. Bart dares to focus this year on issues such as (plant material waste reduction, plant material re-use, nature-friendly materials) all in a practical but nevertheless artistic demonstration that can be interesting to both professional florists and the ordinary public in general. Interested? Bart will wait for you then at the Promenada Mall terrace from 14:00 onwards.
It is not an overstatement to say that this series of events (contest and demonstration) have made a difference in the flower sector of Romania. It was built not only on Dutch flowers and arrangement techniques, but especially on the skills and talent of Romanian florists. In some cases it even changes the lives of the participants. As Dutch Counsellor for Agriculture, Food and Nature – Arie Veldhuizen says: “these events have proven to be a success also because of what seems to be a strong compatibility between Dutch and Romanian people, be they ordinary or business people. In the end, it helped building win-win situations, but also friendships”.