Holland, Michigan
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Holland, Michigan
Holland, Michigan
Downtown Holland, MI
Downtown Holland, MI
The Tulip City
Location of Holland within Ottawa County, Michigan
Location of Holland within Ottawa County, Michigan
Holland, Michigan is located in the United States
Holland, Michigan
Holland, Michigan
Location in the United States
Coordinates: 42°47?N 86°6?W / 42.783°N 86.100°W / 42.783; -86.100Coordinates: 42°47?N 86°6?W / 42.783°N 86.100°W / 42.783; -86.100
CountryUnited States
CountiesOttawa, Allegan
 o MayorNathan Bocks
 o City17.45 sq mi (45.20 km2)
 o Land16.68 sq mi (43.21 km2)
 o Water0.77 sq mi (1.99 km2)
662 ft (202 m)
 o City33,051
 o Estimate 
 o Density1,990.89/sq mi (768.68/km2)
 o Urban
[4] (2015)
 o Metro
1,433,288 (Grand Rapids-Holland-Muskegon metropolitan area)
Time zoneUTC-5 (EST)
 o Summer (DST)UTC-4 (EDT)
ZIP codes
Area code(s)616,269
FIPS code26-38640[5]
GNIS feature ID0628421[6]

Holland is a city in the western region of the Lower Peninsula of the U.S. state of Michigan. It is situated near the eastern shore of Lake Michigan on Lake Macatawa, which is fed by the Macatawa River (formerly known locally as the Black River).

The city spans the Ottawa/Allegan county line, with 9.08 square miles (23.52 km2) in Ottawa and the remaining 8.13 square miles (21.06 km2) in Allegan. As of the 2010 census, the population was 33,051,[7] with an Urbanized Area population of 113,164,[4] Holland, MI Urbanized Area as of 2015, ACS Demographic and Housing Estimates:

Holland is the largest city in Ottawa County, and as of 2013 part of the Grand Rapids-Kentwood-Muskegon Combined Statistical Area. Holland was founded by Dutch Americans, and is in an area that has a large percentage of citizens of Dutch American heritage. It is home to Hope College and Western Theological Seminary, institutions of the Reformed Church in America.

In February 1996 the Holland City Council approved a sister city relationship between Santiago de Querétaro, Querétaro, Mexico and the City of Holland.[8]


Ottawa County was originally populated by Ottawa Indians. In 1846, Reverend George Smith established the Old Wing Mission as an outreach to the native population.

Holland was settled in 1847 by Dutch Calvinist separatists, under the leadership of Dr. Albertus van Raalte.[9] Dire economic conditions in the Netherlands compelled them to emigrate, while their desire for religious freedom led them to unite and settle together as a group.[10]

Van Raalte and his colony settled on land in the midst of the Ottawa (Odawa) people's Old Wing Mission Colony near the Black River where it streamed to Black Lake (now Lake Macatawa) which, in turn, led to Lake Michigan. Joint occupation by the two communities was not a marriage made in heaven. Eventually, the Dutch settlers purchased the land from the natives, who moved north in an effort to preserve their way of life and culture.[11]

In 1848, Michigan suffered from a smallpox epidemic. In consideration of the massive influx settlers into the Ottawa County area, Chief Peter Waukazoo and Reverend George Smith decided to move the community as well as the Holland-area[12]Ottawa Mission from Holland up to Northport (on the Leelanau Peninsula) via on boats and canoes.

In Holland's early history, Van Raalte was a spiritual leader, as well as overseeing political, educational and financial matters. In 1847 Van Raalte established a congregation of the Reformed Church in America, which would later be called the First Reformed Church of Holland. On March 25, 1867,[13][14] Holland was incorporated as a city with Isaac Cappon being the city's first mayor. The city suffered a major fire on October 8–9, 1871, the same time as the Great Chicago Fire in Illinois and the very deadly Peshtigo Fire in Wisconsin.[15] Because of the Great Michigan Fire (which included the Port Huron Fire of 1871), Manistee and Port Huron, Michigan also burned at the same time.

Dutch settlements in Michigan.

Holland was known as the "City of Churches."[16] There are 170 churches in the greater Holland area, many of which are with the Reformed Church in America and Christian Reformed Church in North America denominations. The city is the home to the church that started the trend of the "What Would Jesus Do?" bracelets in 1989.[17] In 1987, a 23-year-old City Council member Phil Tanis was elected mayor of Holland, becoming its youngest mayor while he was still a Hope College student.


Tulip beds in downtown

The city is perhaps best known for its Dutch heritage, which serves not only as a part of the city's cultural identity, but the local economy as well: the Tulip Time Festival in May and various Dutch-themed attractions augment the nearby Lake Michigan shoreline in attracting thousands of tourists annually.

The Holland Museum contains exhibits about the city's history. Another, the Cappon House Museum, was built in 1874 and is a historic museum that once housed the first mayor of Holland, Dutch immigrant Isaac Cappon. The Settlers House Museum, a building that survived the great fire, contains furnishings and relics from the 19th Century.

Holland Harbor Light near Holland, Michigan.

Holland's downtown is listed in the National Register of Historic Places. The "Snowmelt Project" established pipes transporting warm water from the nearby power plant to travel underneath downtown with the purpose of clearing the streets and sidewalks in the downtown area of any snow.

De Zwaan, an original 250-year-old Dutch windmill, is situated on Windmill Island, a municipal park. Its height is 125 feet (38 m) with 40-foot (12 m) sails.

Holland boasts an annual Fiesta, organized by Latin Americans United for Progress, usually on the Saturday closest to May 5 (Cinco de Mayo). Holland is also host to the annual Tulipanes Latino Art & Film Festival, which is held to celebrate the Latino contribution to the culture.

In 2013, Farmer's Insurance named the Holland/Grand Haven Area the most secure mid-sized city in the United States.[18] In 2010, Holland was ranked the second healthiest/happiest town in the United States by the Well-being Index.[19] In 2006, CNN Money named Holland as one of the top five places to retire.[20]


Sign welcoming visitors

Each May Holland hosts an annual Tulip Time Festival. Tulip planting and the festival began in 1930 when 250,000 tulips were planted for the event.[21] Currently six million tulips are used throughout the city. Tulips are planted along many city streets, in city parks and outside municipal buildings as well as at tourist attractions like Dutch Village, the city-owned Windmill Island Gardens, and at a large tulip farm named Veldheer Tulip Gardens. It is normally held the second week of May, during the tulip blooming season. Cruise ships such as the Yorktown from the Great Lakes Cruising Company make Holland a port of call.[22][23]

About one million tourists visit Tulip Time each year,[24] for which the community finds innovative ways to enhance self-funded projects. It has been ranked as America's third largest town festival and was named Reader's Digest's best small town festival.[25] The Tulip Time Festival has attracted big-name acts in recent years such as: Christina Aguilera in 2000, O-Town in 2001, The Verve Pipe in 2004, and Jars of Clay in 2006. Ed McMahon visited Tulip Time in 2007 along with Bobby Vinton. Comedian Bill Cosby headlined the 2014 Tulip Time Festival.

Holland is located on Lake Macatawa, near the shores of Lake Michigan. Scattered along the shoreline are many public beach accesses including Tunnel Park and the widely popular Holland State Park. Across the channel from the State Park is the Holland Harbor Light, known as "Big Red." Smaller beaches along Lake Michigan are present but not well marked. Public accesses are frequent along dead-end streets bordering the shoreline.

The city's primary shopping district is centered along 8th Street, the city's main street downtown.

The 8th Street business district features a thermal snow - melting system which uses cooling water from the local electric plant. In 1988, the city rebuilt the entire street and sidewalk system, installing the thermal pipes underneath. The system will melt up to an inch an hour down to 15°.[26]


According to the United States Census Bureau, the city has a total area of 17.35 square miles (44.94 km2), of which 16.59 square miles (42.97 km2) is land and 0.76 square miles (1.97 km2) is water.[27]


A graph showing the age distribution of Holland, MI

2010 census

As of the census[2] of 2010, there were 33,051 people, 12,021 households, and 7,593 families residing in the city. The population density was 1,992.2 inhabitants per square mile (769.2/km2). There were 13,212 housing units at an average density of 796.4 per square mile (307.5/km2).

Race and Hispanic or Latino Origin: The racial makeup of the city was 85.2% White alone, 4.0% Black or African American, 0.5% Native American, 3.9% Asian, 0.1% Pacific Islander, 5.0% from two or more races. Hispanic or Latino of any race were 22.7% of the population, and White not Hispanic or Latino were 70.0%.[29]

There were 12,021 households, of which 32.8% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 46.5% were married couples living together, 11.9% had a female householder with no husband present, 4.7% had a male householder with no wife present, and 36.8% were non-families. 29.8% of all households were made up of individuals, and 13.5% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.52 and the average family size was 3.13.

The median age in the city was 31.7 years. 24% of residents were under the age of 18; 16.5% were between the ages of 18 and 24; 24.7% were from 25 to 44; 21% were from 45 to 64; and 13.7% were 65 years of age or older. The gender makeup of the city was 47.5% male and 52.5% female.


The City of Holland uses a council/manager form of government. The day-to-day operations of the city are under the supervision of the city manager and his/her staff. The city manager is responsible for selecting all department heads, preparation of the budget and supervision of all employees through his/her appointments.

The city manager serves at the direction of the mayor and city council which are elected positions. The current city manager is Keith Van Beek, former Ottawa County deputy county administrator, who was appointed in February 2018 by the city council. Soren Wolff served as the city manager from 1988 until his retirement in the Fall 2011. Soren previously served the city as assistant city manager in the mid-1970s and had a street named after him near Fairbanks Avenue and 13th Street, which is the main entrance to Smallenburg Park and many of Hope College's athletic facilities. The current assistant city manager is Matt VanDyken, the former IT director for the city.

Holland's city charter requires a mayor and eight city council members. The mayor serves a two-year term, and two at-large council members and six ward council members each serve four-year terms.

The current mayor is Nathan Bocks, a local attorney elected in November 2019.

  • City council members as of November 2019 are:
    • Ward 1 - Myron "Mike" Trethewey (mayor pro-tem)
    • Ward 2 - Jay Peters
    • Ward 3 - Raul Garcia
    • Ward 4 - Nicki Arendshorst
    • Ward 5 - Scott Corbin
    • Ward 6 - David Hoekstra
    • At-Large - Lyn Raymond
    • At-Large - Quincy Byrd

The Holland Board of Public Works was created in 1883. It provides electricity, water and sewer services.[30]


Higher level academic institutions

Charter schools

Private schools


Holland is home to the world's largest pickle factory. The H.J. Heinz Company opened the factory at the same location since 1897 and currently processes over 1 million lbs. of pickles per day during the green season.


The city is serviced by two public airports, the recreational Park Township Airport (IATA: HLM, ICAO: KHLM), and the larger, corporate and charter jet West Michigan Regional Airport (IATA: BIV, ICAO: KBIV). Neither facility is served by regularly scheduled commercial carriers; the nearest airport with airline service is Gerald R. Ford International Airport in Grand Rapids, Michigan, about 35 miles (56 km) northeast. The city also is served by regularly scheduled Amtrak service (the Pere Marquette) east to Grand Rapids and west to Chicago with connections to all points east and west.

The city and surrounding area is served by the MAX (Macatawa Area Express) transportation system, which offers both on-demand and high-speed bus service, linking different parts of the city as well as commercial, medical and government locations outside the city. This service evolved from the former "Dial-A-Ride Transportation" (DART) system.

The city is served by the following highways:

  • (Gerald R. Ford Freeway)

The channel between Lake Macatawa and Lake Michigan allows pleasure craft and commercial boats, even bulk freighters, to access Holland's docks to unload coal, salt and iron scrap.




  • WHTC, 1450 WHTC and The New 99.7 FM
  • WYVN, classic Hits for Holland and the Lakeshore, 92.7 FM
  • WTHS - Hope College radio station, 89.9 FM


  • HCTV, Holland local television station

Fine arts


  • Holland Area Arts Council[32]


  • Holland Chorale,[33] Holland's auditioned chorus, presenting a full concert season of fine choral music
  • Holland Symphony Orchestra,[34] professional symphony orchestra conducted by Maestro Johannes Müller-Stosch


Notable people


  1. ^ "2019 U.S. Gazetteer Files". United States Census Bureau. Retrieved 2020.
  2. ^ a b "U.S. Census website". United States Census Bureau. Retrieved .
  3. ^ a b "Population and Housing Unit Estimates". United States Census Bureau. May 24, 2020. Retrieved 2020.
  4. ^ a b http://www.cityofholland.com/sites/default/files/fileattachments/greater_holland_area_population_1970-2015.pdf
  5. ^ "U.S. Census website". United States Census Bureau. Retrieved .
  6. ^ "Holland". Geographic Names Information System. United States Geological Survey.
  7. ^ Incorporated Places and Minor Civil Divisions, 2010 Census Estimates[dead link]
  8. ^ City of Holland International Relations Commission
  9. ^ Moore, Charles (1915). History of Michigan, Vol. I, pp. 529-31. The Lewis Publishing Company.
  10. ^ Robert P. Swierenga (13 March 1997). "By the Sweat of our Brow: Economic Aspects of the Dutch Immigration to Michigan". swierenga.com. Museum Sesquicentennial Lecture Series. Holland, MI: A.C. Van Raalte Institute for Historical Studies, Hope College. Retrieved .
  11. ^ Robert P. Swierenga and William Van Appledorn (2007). "Old Wing Mission: The Chronicles of the Reverend George N. and Arvilla Powers Smith, Missionary Teachers of Chief Wakazoo's Ottawa Indian Band in Western Michigan, 1838-1849". swierenga.com. Holland, MI: A.C. Van Raalte Institute for Historical Studies, Hope College. Retrieved .
  12. ^ www.grcmc.org, Grand Rapids Community Media Center -. "Ottawa Band Seasonal Travel Map". History Grand Rapids.
  13. ^ Town charter has 1867 as date Archived June 13, 2011, at the Wayback Machine
  14. ^ Holland: The Tulip Town, Images of America by Randall P. Vande Water
  15. ^ Wilkins, A. (2012-03-29). "October 8, 1871: The Night America Burned". io9. Gawker Media. Retrieved .
  16. ^ "Holland, Michigan". citytowninfo.com.
  17. ^ What Would Jesus Do WWJD Products Inspire Thousands, Christianity Today Library, November 7, 1997
  18. ^ Farmers Insurance (23 October 2013). "Holland-Grand Haven, Michigan and Corvallis, Oregon Top Most Secure List Among Medium and Small... -- LOS ANGELES, Oct. 23, 2013". prnewswire.com. Retrieved 2015.
  19. ^ ABC News. "Michigan Town One of the Happiest Places in America - ABC News". ABC News. Retrieved 2015.
  20. ^ "Best places to retire". CNN. 2006. Archived from the original on February 22, 2014.
  21. ^ [1] Archived September 27, 2007, at the Wayback Machine
  22. ^ Runk, David, Associated Press (July 11, 2006).Great Lakes cruises offer majestic views USA Today.
  23. ^ Great Lakes Cruising Company. Retrieved July 15, 2012.
  24. ^ Frost Research Center (Summer 2018). "Tulip Time Festival Attendance and Economic Impact Report" (PDF). IMPLAM. 1: 40.
  25. ^ "www.hollandgo.com". www.hollandgo.com.
  26. ^ Grimes, Ryan (22 March 2016). "Holland's heated sidewalks, streets were a gamble that seems to have paid off". Retrieved 2016.
  27. ^ "US Gazetteer files 2010". United States Census Bureau. Archived from the original on 2011-02-20. Retrieved .
  28. ^ "Census of Population and Housing". Census.gov. Retrieved 2015.
  29. ^ "U.S. Census Bureau QuickFacts: Holland city, Michigan". www.census.gov. Retrieved 2020.
  30. ^ "Holland BPW History". Archived from the original on August 1, 2016. Retrieved 2015.
  31. ^ McGuire, Justine. "Johnson Controls to leave automotive business in October, affecting one Holland plant".
  32. ^ "Holland Area Arts Council". Holland Area Arts Council.
  33. ^ "Holland Chorale". Retrieved 2020.
  34. ^ "Holland Symphony Orchestra of Holland Michigan". Holland Symphony Orchestra. Retrieved 2020.
  35. ^ Ermak, Lisa. "L. Frank Baum and the Macatawa Goose Man: Celebrating the origins of".
  36. ^ "Conrad Biography". Lake Michigan Carferry. 2014. Retrieved 2014.
  37. ^ "Luke Witkowski Stats and News". NHL.com. Retrieved 2020.

External links

  This article uses material from the Wikipedia page available here. It is released under the Creative Commons Attribution-Share-Alike License 3.0.



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