Juggling on a visit to St. | Eindhoven

EINDHOVEN – Sinterklaas will stay in the former Steentjeskerk on Sint Antoniusstraat for more than three weeks. This week he was visited by the children of customers in the Food Bank.

Just before three o’clock on Wednesday afternoon, the brown horse Ozo Slowly stands outside the entrance to Sinterklaashuis. A few precocious children dare gently brush it on their noses. Inside, Sinterklaas has just woken up after a short afternoon nap. “I needed that after a heavy night. There were many children who had put on their shoes, and of course I cannot disappoint them.”

Saint Nikolaus stays in the large building at the invitation of Olof van Gelder. “We are doing this for the fourth time now,” says the host. Sinterklaas arrived here on Saturday and will stay until Sunday evening, December 4. Every day is busy. We expect a total of twelve thousand visitors.”

They normally pay 8.95 euros for entrance, but this afternoon children with a parent can enter for free, provided the parent is a customer of the Food Bank. “We came up with this idea together with estate agent Kenneth Verstraal. Because it’s a shame if there are children who don’t get presents because their parents can’t afford them, especially with the rising prices today. Thanks to some sponsors, we were able to invite 150 children.”

Climbing roofs

Jillvano (8) and his sister Dalisha (7) are amazed when they and mother Mellanie are received by a couple of helpers. Everywhere you see the colorfully wrapped gifts piling up. First, they can try climbing over roofs and crawling through chimneys. Then they go to the basement, where Pieten has their sleeping place.


We expect a total of twelve thousand visitors

Olof van Gelder, Olof Sales & Events

Saint Nicholas addresses the six children and their parents via two screens. He tells that another Piet is sleeping and asks if they want to wake her up. Fortunately, it succeeds, because there is still a lot of work to be done. At the back of the building they see Sinterklaas’ bed and the children can do a quiz. Does the good saint live in Belgium or Spain? And what is the name of his hat? A stupid piet wants to reveal the answer, but he makes a mistake and comes up with Santa’s nightcap.

Mellanie watches her children walk to the gingerbread bar. There they hear that there is no supply, it is in the sunken steamer. No problem, because further ahead is the gingerbread machine, with all kinds of buttons and handles for water, herbs, salt, fake air and flour. Dalisha is thrilled when she manages to fill a bag.


Then it gets exciting. She and her brother are waiting for Sinterklaas with their drawings. “I had drawn a steamer”, she says afterwards. “With water and Sinterklaas.” He was very happy about it, Jillvano said. Mellanie expects it won’t be long before she tells the two the story behind the party. “But I still have a six-month-old baby, so the adventure can last for years!”

When asked what they liked best, Jillvano immediately says, “Climbing over rooftops!” His sister had fun crawling through the chimneys. Fortunately, there is still time to do it again. When they go out, they see their drawing hanging between the others in the mail room. There they can each choose a gift.

The saint looks at it from a distance and sees that it is good. It takes a while for the new group of children to arrive, so he has some time to read and answer letters from children at his desk.

With the saint and some helpers in the picture in Sinterklaashuis. © Anette van de Goor/DCI media

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