Skip to Content

What is the flag at Holland State Park?

Holland State Park is located along the beautiful shores of Lake Michigan in the state of Michigan. This state park is known for its expansive sandy beaches, hiking trails, campgrounds, and of course, its iconic Big Red lighthouse. One interesting feature of Holland State Park is the flag that flies high above the beach. This unique flag often attracts the curiosity of beachgoers who wonder about its meaning and history.

The History of the Holland State Park Flag

The flag that flies over Holland State Park is known as the Frisian flag. It features four horizontal bands – two light blue bands at the top and bottom with two white bands in the middle. In the center of the flag is a red and white checkered shield. This design has historical roots in the Netherlands.

During the 16th and 17th centuries, the area around Holland, Michigan was settled by Dutch immigrants, many of whom came from the Dutch province of Frisia. When Holland State Park was established in the 1920s, the founders wanted to pay tribute to the town’s Dutch heritage. Thus, the Frisian flag was adopted to connect the park to the history of the Dutch settlers.

Today, the Frisian flag proudly waves over Lake Michigan as a symbol of Holland’s Dutch past. For visitors to the park, it serves as a visible reminder of the immigrants who helped settle and shape Holland. The flag creates a meaningful link between Holland State Park and the Netherlands.

The Meaning Behind the Holland State Park Flag

Each component of the Frisian flag at Holland State Park holds symbolic meaning.

  • The two blue stripes represent the sky over Frisia and the blue waters surrounding the region.
  • The two white stripes signify the sandy beaches and dunes along the Frisian coasts.
  • The red and white checkered shield pays homage to the old coat of arms of Frisia.

Together, these elements visually depict the province of Frisia’s landscape, history, and heritage. Flying this flag connects Holland State Park back to the origins of its first European settlers.

When the Holland State Park Flag is Flown

The custom at Holland State Park is to fly the Frisian flag when weather conditions allow. The flag is flown daily from park open to park close. This allows visitors to see the flag waving proudly throughout the day during the summer beach season and into the fall months.

However, the flag is taken down during inclement weather to prevent damage. Strong winds and storms along the lakeshore can make flying the flag difficult. The park staffers carefully monitor the weather to determine when the Frisian flag needs to be lowered temporarily.

As soon as the weather clears, the Frisian flag is run back up the pole. If you visit Holland State Park, be sure to glance up at the flag to get a glimpse of this unique symbol of the area’s Dutch heritage.

Interesting Facts About the Holland State Park Frisian Flag

  • The Frisian flag was first used in the early 14th century and remains an important symbol of Frisian identity today.
  • In the Netherlands, the Frisian flag flies at many public buildings and events in the Frisian regions.
  • The color scheme and design are based on the coat of arms of the medieval Friesland region.
  • During World War II, the Frisian flag was temporarily banned by Germany until the Netherlands was liberated in 1945.
  • In the U.S., Holland, Michigan has the distinction of being the only place where the Frisian flag is flown on a daily basis.

At Holland State Park, the flying of the Frisian flag represents more than 800 years of history and heritage. It’s a treasure that visitors and residents alike enjoy seeing wave near the shores of Lake Michigan.

The Frisian Flag in Holland, Michigan Today

In present times, the Frisian flag remains a strongly cherished symbol in Holland, Michigan. The flag expresses local pride in the Dutch settlers who founded the town and serves as a tribute to the ongoing Dutch cultural traditions.

Outside of Holland State Park, it’s common to see the Frisian flag displayed around Holland. Many local businesses fly the flag or feature it on signs and marketing materials. There’s even a Frisian flag that flies along Interstate 196 as you enter Holland from the east.

Additionally, the Frisian flag appears on souvenirs, apparel, and merchandise sold in Holland’s shops. It’s often used in parades, festivals, and celebrations as a representation of the town’s heritage.

By embracing the Frisian flag as an iconic local symbol, Holland continues to celebrate its unique identity as a Dutch-American community.

The Global Popularity of the Frisian Flag

Although strongly associated with Holland, Michigan, the Frisian flag has become recognizable around the globe. It remains an important symbol for Frisians wherever they have settled worldwide.

There are estimates of up to 500,000 ethnic Frisians and people of Frisian descent living outside of Europe. Many emigrated from the Netherlands to countries like the United States, Canada, Australia, and New Zealand over the centuries.

Wherever the Frisian diaspora has spread, the flag has often accompanied them. The International Frisian Flag Day on November 11th brings worldwide attention and celebrations of Frisian culture and identity.

So while the Frisian flag flies proudly in Holland State Park, it’s also flown and cherished by Frisians across oceans and continents as a meaningful shared emblem.


The unique Frisian flag at Holland State Park has a long, meaningful history. It symbolizes the park’s Dutch heritage passed down from the original Frisian settlers. The flag’s colors and symbols connect back to the medieval Frisian region and its coat of arms.

Today, the Frisian flag remains an iconic part of Holland’s local culture and pride. It represents the community’s collective Dutch and Frisian ancestry. Though strongly embraced in Holland, the flag holds significance for Frisians globally as well.

So next time you visit Holland State Park, take a moment to appreciate the story behind its waving white, blue, and red flag. It’s a special symbol that links Holland back through centuries to its origins across the Atlantic.

Color Meaning
Blue The sky over Frisia and surrounding waters
White The sandy Frisian beaches and dunes
Red & White Checkered Shield Homage to the old Frisian coat of arms

This table summarizes the symbolic meaning behind each color and element of the Frisian flag flown at Holland State Park.