December 2010

Nostalgic trans-Atlantic crossing Rotterdam-New York


Cruise company Holland America Line will offer two nostalgic trans-Atlantic crossings next summer, re-sailing the classic itinerary from Rotterdam to New York City.

Holland America Line was founded as the Nederlandsch-Amerikaansche Stoomvaart Maatschappij and offered its first trans-Atlantic crossing from New York to Rotterdam in 1872. Thousands of Dutch immigrants arrived in the United States with ships like these in the 19th and early 20th century.

Holland America Line last offered a classic trans-Atlantic crossing in 1971. To commemorate this 40 year history, two here-to-there crossings are planned for 2011. Another cruise company, Cunard Line, still offers regular crossings with its ship the Queen Mary 2.

”Proud to honor our heritage”
"Trans-Atlantic cruises were the foundation of Holland America Line for several decades, and there's still a strong desire from today's travelers who want to step back in time and relive the celebrated days of an elegant crossing or follow in the footsteps of their ancestors," Holland America executive vice president Richard Meadows says in a statement. "We're proud to honor our heritage with these two special itineraries."

Stops in Cork and Southampton
Rotterdam’s nine-day trans-Atlantic sailing departs from Rotterdam, the Netherlands, on July 3, 2011, and calls at the traditional crossing departure port of Southampton, England, before heading to New York. Dutch Chef Cas Spijkers is scheduled to sail on the July 3 crossing. The July 12 trans-Atlantic departure returns to Rotterdam from New York over nine leisurely days with a call at Cobh (Cork), Ireland, another time-honored stop on crossings of the past.

The line says the voyages will include nostalgia-themed dinner menus and entertainment, special guest lectures, and the presence of a temporary "museum at sea," among other crossing-related features.

Saint Nicholas in the United States, 2010


December 5th is traditionally the day for Saint Nicholas celebrations and this weekend there were many events organized by the Dutch-American community. Our calendar showed more than 20 public appearances by Saint Nick in the United States.

Of special note was the arrival of St. Nick in the Los Angeles harbor, organized by the Dutch School of Los Angeles. With help of the LA Harbor fire department St. Nick and his helpers arrived by boat to a huge crowd of children.

Below you'll find a selection of photographs of those events this weekend; there are many more on our Facebook page.