HIGHWOOD – Gingers unite! On June 6 and 7, the City of Highwood will host the first Redhead Days Festival in the U.S. Redhead Days is a festival originating in Breda, Holland that seeks to unite the global redheaded community through its three core values of bonding, pride and recognition.
“There is no distance too far to experience the love, kinship and immediate bond that all redheads share with one another,” said Jim Stoecker, Highwood’s honorary Redhead, owner of Alex’s Washington Gardens and event organizer, who is bringing this festival to fruition.
Stoecker explained how he first came upon the redhead festival, “In 2012, I was on a bicycle ride across Europe and chanced across the 5th Annual Redhead Days in Breda, where we set the record for most redheads in one place with 1,255. Since then, they’ve continued setting records, and I’ve continued dreaming of bringing this great experience to my City of Highwood, Illinois. I plan to go back to Breda in 2015 to celebrate our affiliation!”
Redheads of all ages, from all around Chicagoland, Illinois, the Midwest, and across America are encouraged to come to Highwood for a two-day ‘Ginger Jamboree’. The event will culminate at 3pm on Sunday the 7th with the Country’s largest gathering of Redheads to be photographed from above Everts Park, 130 Highwood Avenue. All registered Gingers are asked to wear a blue color top to enhance their red hair in the picture.
The creator of the Redhead Days in Breda, Holland, Bart Rouwenhorst said, “When people come together as redheads, they just look at each other. They have this certain bond. And I think this whole event will some day expand to multiple events, maybe across the world.” As one of the first official affiliates of Redhead Days, Highwood is starting this global community gathering in America.
The family friendly festival will take place at Highwood’s City Hall Park, 17 Highwood Avenue, where participants can register to be a part of the record breaking photo, purchase any signature “ginger gear, drinks, and goodies,” vote for their favorite carrot cake, and then head out to stroll the streets of Highwood and see how Highwood businesses are painting the town Red! Registration is FREE and will be open from 10am-5pm each day.
On Saturday, the famous Carrot Cake Contest will take place from 1 to 3 p.m. A panel of renowned judges will taste carrot cake entries from 1pm to 2:30pm, and the elite Carrot Cake Champion will be announced at 3 p.m. But perhaps the most exciting part of the weekend will occur on Sunday from 2 to 3 p.m. with the redhead gathering, count, and photograph.