King’s Day De Weide in Hoogeveen covered by additional rules. ‘The enthusiasm is gone now’

King’s Day in De Weide in Hoogeveen is growing like crazy, with around 2,500 visitors last year. Great for the organizing neighborhood association, but it will be saddled with many extra rules when it comes to the permit for the coming fiftieth edition.

Since 2022, King’s Day has taken place in De Weide in the Steenberger Park, with more and more entertainment and many visitors. Fifty enthusiastic volunteers try to keep the popular party on the right track every year.

But that enthusiasm has now gone, the CDA stated. A dark cloud hangs over the upcoming anniversary edition, on Saturday April 27. During the municipal meeting on Thursday evening, the party asked questions about the permit application.

Purple crocodile

CDA councilor Arnold de Weerd compared the situation to the purple crocodile, known from a 2004 TV advertisement for an insurance company and a metaphor for excessive and customer-unfriendly bureaucracy and greed for regulations.

“Every year, the organization must submit a script and map for the permit,” De Weerd recalled. “But this year there are additional requirements for the neighborhood association.” He refers to the traffic plan, emergency plan, safety plan, weather scenario and house rules.

The CDA doubts the usefulness and necessity of this regulatory burden. “Why weren’t they applicable last year?” De Weerd wondered. He wanted customization and municipal support with the permit application. “So that the 50th edition of the King’s Day festival can actually go ahead.”


Councilor Roelof Bisschop (VVD) emphasized that the municipality is not out to hinder the organization, but pointed out the current size of the King’s Day festival in De Weide. It once started small with a children’s flea market, but has now become a real festival with 2,500 visitors.

“Additional documents are needed to guarantee safety for visitors and accessibility for emergency services,” Bisschop said. According to the alderman, the fact that the permit for 2023 did not yet have these additional requirements was due to the scale.

Then there were a few inflatables and the organization expected 500 visitors. It later turned out that there had been five times as many. “So that’s a completely different story.”

Ten air cushions

According to the alderman, the current application for the King’s Day festival involves ten air cushions, a shooting gallery and a catering square. That is why the municipality of Hoogeveen has scaled up the permit this year and additional requirements are being imposed. “And these are certainly not books with hundreds of pages.”

Bisschop also pointed out the need for good agreements regarding liability. “Suppose something happens to visitors at the festival, then the organization will have a major problem.”

And about the required weather scenario: “The weather in our country is unruly and can suddenly change on nice days. Inflatables and stalls can easily blow over. As an organization you have to think about how you can guarantee the safety of visitors.”

To help

The municipality has now discussed the permit with the neighborhood association three times. Bishop promised a new meeting on Thursday. “To see what else we can help the organization with, so that all data is provided and the party can continue.”

He then invited ‘everyone’ to come to the fiftieth edition of the King’s Day Festival, but was tempered by the mayor. “As long as we don’t exceed 2,500 visitors,” Karel Loohuis noted, “because then new measures will be necessary.”