Common Carnaval Maastricht

Carnaval is one of (if not) the most powerful rituals known to our city. 

Maastricht cherishes its customs. Both old and new traditions exist right next to one another. It's all a matter of giving each other space. This is what makes Maastricht a good city to live in, to live life in and to visit.

'Carnaval' is one of the oldest of these traditions. The ritual that culminates in the days of the carnaval festival is built from a wide variety of events: Gatherings of people, in large or small numbers, even when 'Vastelaovend' (the Limburgian name for Carnaval) is still just a date on the calendar we look forward to. Creating costumes, building a float, playing music, having food and drinks. We do all of these things together, as a group.

The theme of the Maastrichtian Vastelaovend is to connect, through ‘Plezeer & Sjariteit’, through fun and charity.

‘Common Carnaval’ is a project by, for and with citizens of Maastricht, those born to the city as well as refugees and newcomers.  

The refugees haven't just left their city, village or home. When they fled they had to leave the belongings, the moments, and the locations that shaped their every day life behind. They also left their shared rituals: the celebrations they shared with family, friends, neighborhoods, cities or even an entire country.

One of the pillars of the 'Mestreechter Geis', the pride of any Maastrichtian, is the tolerant way of life. This is why we want / would like Carnaval, the preparation for it, the eventual parade and the celebration after, to also be a wholehearted welcome for all refugees. We want to meet them, help them participate, and make them feel included in our community.

We can do this by sharing our rituals bound to the Carnaval with them. By inviting them to create costumes together, by building objects and a float together, and by taking part in the parade together. 

Core value of celebrating Carnaval is questioning society and every one's social role in a humorous, curious, and respectful manner. Therefore we will form a temporary Carnaval's Society, a union that will be led by a refugee-Prince and a Princess- who is 'ein vaan us' (Limburgian: one of us, referring to the people who speak the Maastricht dialect). The traditional ‘Council of eleven' leading, will consist of a number of young Maastrichtians, some young artists to be and a few young refugees or asylum seekers.

While we count the days to February 7th this council will try to connect all inhabitants of Maastricht through the use of mild humor.

Everyone is invited to join!

Common Carnaval! 

The Council of eleven is supported by:  Stichting Elisabeth Strouven, iArts Maastricht, Het Geluid Maastricht, Bureau Europa, Tout Maastricht, Code 043, Not Just A Number, Fashionclash, Dear Hunter, COA, Zuyd Hogeschool, Gemeente Maastricht, Stichting Kanunnik Salden, de Tempeleers, Vluchtelingenwerk, Jongerenraad Maastricht & Provincie Limburg