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Amsterdam entices participation foreign consulates in city promotion

Major cultural events planned

Tags: Excerpts from the Windmill

AMSTERDAM – In the centuries past, merchants based in the Dutch capital distributed wares and goods from across the globe at home and abroad. Now the city’s foreign consuls general have been asked to showcase their respective cultures and heritage at new annual festivals. The move is part of Amsterdam’s efforts to enhance the cultural image of its city centre.

With the proposed events, Amsterdam wants to give its citizens and visitors a better understanding of the various cultural heritages in the world.

Among the proposals by the council of the municipal central district are the New Year’s Eve celebrations on the famous Dam Square. As happens in other cities throughout the world, in particular New York, such an event should be held annually and thus become a tourist attraction in itself, according to city council. Also proposed are ethnic events to be organized by established entrepreneurs from various backgrounds and cultures.

An annual cultural and literary festival could become one of the other events planned for the city. The council is inviting artists, musicians, filmmakers and others to participate in the set-up of such an endeavour. The various art schools, conservatoriums and other such institutes of learning have been asked to participate in to the program.

The plans by the council of the inner city are meant to make the Dutch capital even more attractive to visitors outside the tourist season. The proposed ‘major event’ could enhance the appeal of the city.

The council also proposed to expand a number of existing cultural events. For example, the street organ festival will become an annual happening, and the event known as Boekenbal, now by invitation only to start the Week of the Book, could become the centrepiece of an annual literary festival. Another event easily expanded is the annual Canal Music Festival. It is proposed to make it into ‘Amsterdam Classic,’ and have its venues expanded to squares and streets throughout the historic centre of the city.