A grand total of 11,493 people applied to be a part of King Willem-Alexander’s 50th birthday dinner, which is set to take place the day after King’s Day. King Willem-Alexander has 150 seats available for people who also celebrate a Crown year (which can be divided by five) on 27 April. The 150 lucky ones will be chosen via a lottery. The announcement is due April 3rd.
Via the official Facebook, King Willem-Alexander, dressed in formal attire, invited his guests. He says, “Are you also celebrating a milestone birthday on the 27th? Then one of these seats could be yours on the 28th. My wife and I are looking forward to it!”
After the dinner at the Royal Palace in Amsterdam, the palace can be visited by for free for 50 hours straight. It will close its doors again on Sunday night at midnight. The Royal Palace in Amsterdam is regularly open for visitors, although an entrance fee is required and it can close at a moment’s notice.
The King and Queen are set to spend King’s Day in Tilburg, in the south of the Netherlands, this year. Although the holiday is celebrated nationwide, the Royal couple visit one or more cities each year. King’s Day is a bank holiday in the Netherlands. It used to fall on 30 April to coincide with Queen Juliana’s birthday, even after she had been succeeded by her daughter, Queen (now Princess) Beatrix because her birthday was in January, where it would be too cold to celebrate.
The Dutch Constitution states that if King’s Day falls on a Sunday, it should be celebrated the day before. This was the case in 2014, for King Willem-Alexander first celebration as King. In 2009, when it was still Queen’s Day the Royal Family’s parade was attacked by a man who ploughed his car through the crowds, killing eight people and injuring ten. The car eventually crashed into a monument, and the driver later died in hospital. The Royal Family remained unharmed.