There’s only one Sinterklaas and he’s arriving by steamboat on November 14


The conflict between two rival organisations each planning their own Sinterklaas parade in Amsterdam has been resolved.

The threat of two rival parades was the result of a schism in the Sinterklaas in Amsterdam organisation SSIA, which is responsible for the launch of the festive season in mid-November.

A group of volunteers broke away in protest at plans to move this year’s event to the Johan Cruyff Arena because of coronavirus rules, as well as chairman Edgar Peer’s efforts to make the organisation more professional.

Former newsreader and journalist Noraly Beyer, who was called in to mediate between the parties at the request of mayor Femke Halsema, said her mission had been ‘partly successful’.

Sinterklaas will now be arriving on the traditional steamboat and do an extended – and unprecedented- tour of the canals so as many people as possible can see him without having to show a QR code. He will then land at  the Scheepvaartterrein next to the maritime museum but will not do a tour of the city centre on horseback.

Beyer said that although the parade had been saved, the parties were far from reconciled. ‘Everyone wants a lovely parade fort he children, including the volunteers. But they won’t be participating. But they won’t do anything to spoil the fun for the other volunteers either,’ she told the Parool.

She said the conflict between the groups was a longstanding one, a result of ‘people, some of them from the same family, who know each other through and through and who have been organising this for years.

The organisation has said it will try to work on a more professional footing as soon as Sinterklaas has safely landed in Amsterdam on November 14.

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