Sinterklaas made his appearance Friday night on a white horse, followed by four helpers who passed out candy canes to children carrying pink lanterns.
“Sinterklaas,” who is known as Saint Nick, travels from Spain to Holland, Michigan, each year to lead a procession on a white horse, according to storyteller Deborah Schakel. She says children leave their shoes by the fireplace or a window for him to fill with treats.
Tulip Time Festival hosted Holland’s annual Sinterklaas Eve Celebration to promote donations for Kids’ Food Basket. In the spirit of giving, Schakel performed a Dutch folklore before the parade called “The Baker’s Dozen,” a story about sharing when you have more than you need.
The community crafted Dutch lanterns at the Holland Area Arts Council to light up 8th Street for the Sinterklaas Procession. Sam Martens, one of the helpers, assisted with crafts and prepared a burlap sack of candy.
“And if a kid is bad, we snatch them up in the bags,” laughs Martens as he refers to the mischievous Zwarte Piet, who kids believe will kidnap the naughty children and bring them back to Spain.