Starting on Friday evening, the Hoge and Lage der A in Groningen will be transformed into one of the biggest and most picturesque Christmas scenes in the north: WinterWelVaart.
Translation by Traci White
The stands selling seasonal treats and the twinkling lights outlining the masts of the stately ships moored along the quay are already in place along the A canal in the heart of Groningen for the 12th edition of WinterWelVaart.
The Groninger Internet Courant reports that 20 historic ships will be decked out in their holiday best and serve as the backdrop to a Christmas market to rival the cosiest Weihnachtsmarkt on Friday, Saturday and Sunday.
Choirs and live theatre acts will complete the scene throughout the weekend-long programme. The market stalls will feature goodies and items that go beyond the typical Christmas market fare. Vendors on site will be selling arts, antiques, trinkets and artisanal sweets and savoury snacks.
Beyond the activities taking place near and, in some cases, on the beautiful boats on the water, artists living and working in the A-kwartier will also open their doors to the public as well. Several guestsartists will have their works featured in the area, and all of the art stops have been organised into a special art route along the waterside.
WinterWelVaart also features a dedicated programme of theatre performances, workshops and games for younger visitors on board some of the ships and inside the nearby Maritime Museum (Scheepvaartmuseum Groningen). The WinterWelVaart event made its way through the province earlier this month with special events in Zoutkamp, Appingedam and Sappemeer in early December before spreading the holiday cheer in Groningen this weekend.