Redhead Days in Highwood, IL

Redhead Days in Highwood, IL
Israeli Redhead Photography Project

Is it a bucket list item of yours to get to Redhead Days in the Netherlands? It sure is one of mine. But soon, we’ll be able to cross it off, as I recently received an email about a satellite event in nearby Highwood, IL.

While I’m sure my former J-school professors would like to lynch me for posting a press release word-for-word, I’ve already dabbled in the dark side (PR), so here goes: 

HIGHWOOD, IL (JUNE 6-7, 2015) –

Gingers unite! On June 6th and 7th, the City of Highwood is proud to host the first Redhead Days Festival in the United States. Redhead Days is a festival originating in Breda, Holland that seeks to unite the global redheaded community through their 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,” says Jim Stoecker, Highwood’s honorary Redhead, owner of Alex’s Washington Gardens and event organizer, who is bringing this festival to fruition.

Stoecker explains how he first came upon the redhead festival, “In 2012, I was on a bicycle ride across Europe and chanced across the 5thAnnual 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 says, “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 from10am-5pm each day.

On Saturday, the famous Carrot Cake Contest will take place from 1pm to 3pm. A panel of renowned judges will taste carrot cake entries from1pm to 2:30pm, and the elite Carrot Cake Champion will be announced at 3pm. But perhaps the most exciting part of the weekend will occur on Sunday from 2pm to 3pm with the redhead gathering, count, and photograph.

To stay up to date with the latest news on Redhead Days in Highwood, please LIKE or view Redhead Days official website at


Redhead Days is a festival started in 2005 in Breda, Holland and takes place in the beginning of September. It has participants from over 50 countries and 6 continents, including the United States, Africa, South America, Europe, Australia and Asia. It has gained such national notoriety that it includes affiliates now in London and Chicago. The fest has made news in BBC Magazine, and various other publications.

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Filed under: Events

Tags: Ginger Jamboree, Redhead Days

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    The Ginger Phile has had the unfortunate disposition of being a ginger since birth. She has tried various medications to cure her gingervitis, including therapies such as tantrum-throwing. Her efforts have been to no avail. Instead, she is trying to write it out, via this blog. Unfortunately, she doesn't think it will bear a soul for her. The Ginger Phile is from the exotic land of Wisconsin, where she had daily inner turmoil over whether she was a ginger or a daywalker. So far, three of three votes say daywalker. She begs to differ, as someone recently told her they would want to be with her if they were biking at night because she is so pale.

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