ASIATODAY.ID, RIJWIJK – The Embassy of the Republic of Indonesia in The Hague held the East Indonesia Festival at De Broodfabriek, Rijswijk, Netherlands.
After the success of the Indonesia Festival in 2022 with more than 10,000 visitors, this year’s event has a special theme for Eastern Indonesia (2/12).
“The aim of the East Indonesia Festival is to provide a platform or place for our brothers and sisters from the East Indonesia diaspora community to be able to meet each other, stay in touch, share and also show traditions and potential, be it traditional arts, food and traditional cultural values. Those who live spread across various regions in the Netherlands can gather together, have reunions, and more importantly maintain the preservation of culture and traditions among the younger generation,” said the Indonesian Ambassador to the Kingdom of the Netherlands, Mayerfas.
The diaspora from Eastern Indonesian communities, such as Maluku, Manado, Nusa Tenggara and Papua, is the largest Indonesian diaspora group in the Netherlands. However, so far the promotional exposure has not been optimal, both in terms of social, cultural, economic, including culinary and creative industries.
For this reason, this year the Indonesian Embassy in The Hague is specifically holding festival activities which are intended not only for promotion but also as a communication and collaboration platform for Eastern Indonesian community groups.
The event opened with the beating of the tifa by the Indonesian Ambassador together with representatives of the Eastern Indonesian diaspora community.
Deputy Mayor of Risjwijk, Armand van de Laar, looked enthusiastic at the event, appreciating the spirit of togetherness of the Indonesian diaspora who are active in promoting their culture in the Netherlands.
The 2023 East Indonesia Festival presents various art performances and bazaars of food, drinks and MSME products.
This festival is full of series with interesting performances. The ‘Badansa and Badendang’ stage was lively with entertainment, including: typical dances from the Tanimbar Islands by the Lima Diti group, various dances from Maluku by Maropi Perowano and the Moar – Holland Cultural Development Group Studio, Sasando music by Amor Frans and Maureen Dumais, Tifa music by Culturegroup Tifa Bunji, traditional fashion show from Malacca, Belu, Manggarai, Maumere and Nagekeo by Bintang Timur.
Apart from that, visitors also filled the area in front of the stage and danced to songs performed by bands such as Black Brothers and The Tuning, as well as famous artists Roy Tuhumury and Yosina Roemajauw. The lineup of performers, numbering more than 100 people, are all members of the Eastern Indonesian diaspora.
Ambassador Mayerfas emphasized, “The Indonesian diaspora in the Netherlands is the largest abroad, especially from Eastern Indonesia. This is an asset that we must optimize, promote and develop as a national strength. Their active involvement is important in supporting promotion and strengthening Indonesia’s positive image. ”
Around the stage, there is a ‘Mari Makang’ area where visitors can release their longing for the taste of typical Eastern Indonesian food and drinks which are rare and difficult to find even though there are more than 420 Indonesian restaurants in the Netherlands.
Papeda and yellow fish pindang, sago sep with papaya leaf vegetables, olso sweet potato, Rica fish or RW chicken, and red bean ice are some of the various unique and exotic dishes sold at 11 culinary stands.
Meanwhile, on the other hand, there are 14 stands lined up offering various MSME products from snacks, spices, to food and crafts in the ‘Pasar Balanja’ area.
The festival is also used to provide exposure opportunities for a number of community associations including State-Owned Enterprises, such as the Indonesia Diaspora Network Netherlands (IDN-NL), Pelita Foundation, and BNI.
Apart from that, as a media partner, IndoMe Podcast, a Dutch language broadcast platform with a target audience of Dutch citizens of Indonesian descent, also opened a stand and provided coverage and interviews at this event.
Even though the weather was unfavorable with rain and snow falling and temperatures reaching minus, thousands of visitors still came and enjoyed the 2023 East Indonesia Festival in the Netherlands. (AT Network)
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