This post should probably have been up months ago but better late than never.
In September 2015 I finally got to tick off my life list going to Roodharigendag – the Redhead Days festival in the Netherlands.
I’ve been following the event since it was a bit smaller, five or six years ago. The first festival was organised by Bart Rouwenhorst in 2005, bringing together a small group of redheads for a photography project. The idea stuck and, according to the festival website, 2015 saw 6,000 redheads and over 40,000 total visitors over three days across the town of Breda.
Going to the festival was one of those things that I kept saying I would do, and it sat there on the life list from the first draft so eventually I roped in my cousin and booked some flights.
It was great fun experiencing being around so many redheaded people. Slightly odd, unsurprisingly, to look around and at once feel both more and less special for having red hair.
The town of Breda isn’t far from Amsterdam so we stayed in a hotel there, spent Saturday exploring the city and then went to Breda and back on the train on Sunday. Breda is a university town with lots of history. Events that formed the festival ran not only in the park but in old and new churches, gazebos in the street and bars and cafes. The town was extremely friendly and the whole festival has a really positive atmosphere.
I took part in the huge photoshoot in the park, and had my photograph taken by photographers who had created scenes inspired by Van Gogh. We also found the ‘Mr Redhead 2015’ contest very entertaining.
If you have red hair and you’re proud of it, this festival is a really fun experience. I think if I went again I’d try to recruit a gang of redheaded friends and join in properly with the full-weekend camping and pub crawls etc.
Sadly I couldn’t make it in 2016 but perhaps I’ll see you there next year.
[This would be the ideal place to put a redheaded emoji but they still don’t quite exist yet. Sign the petition if you haven’t already.]