Scenic USA - Michigan

Windmill Island

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De Zwaan, Windmill Island -Holland, Michigan

Photo by Sharon Brockschmidt
Inset Photos by Denny Barnes

     Just southwest of Grand Rapids, where Lake Macatawa empties into Lake Michigan, Tulip Gardens vacationers will find the town of Holland and a great deal of Dutch history. Welcoming its guests, Holland proclaims Americans may enjoy Old World culture without the need of a passport.
     And what better way is there to link the city's name with the old world charm of the Netherlands? The town purchased De Zwaan, a 245 year old windmill from a retired miller in Vinker, Netherlands. The twelve story authentic windmill became the parks most prominent attraction and looks out over Windmill Island and 35 acres of lush gardens, canals, dikes, a hundred year old Dutch carousel and an Amsterdam street organ.
     Here on Windmill Island, Tulip Varieties things begin to bustle with the first signs of spring. By the beginning of May things are in full swing, starting with the Tulip Festival and the Dutch Trade Show.
     The municipal park was first opened in 1965 and was honored by Prince Bernhard of the Netherlands, who presided over the opening ceremonies. The Windmill Island Gardens are a special sight year round, but as anyone can imagine, the gardens are especially attractive during tulip time, when the grounds are blanketed with color. In fact, the entire city will be covered in flowering bulbs, including more than a million tulips in full bloom.

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