I was born and raised in Kerkrade and celebrating carnival has always been part of my life. As befits a true ‘Kerkradenaar’, I always only celebrated carnival in one place, Kerkrade! Singing countless carnival songs in the Kerkrade dialect, which even others from Limburg find difficult to understand.

When I had passed the age of thirty, celebrating carnival made way for other hobbies, such as study, work and family.

A few years ago a childhood friend – with whom I had always celebrated carnival – asked if I was interested in celebrating carnival in Kerkrade again. Then, I had no free time but I have never forgotten his question. The next year I made sure I kept space free in my calendar and on carnival Monday I went to watch the street parade (d'r Jroese Tsóg) and on Tuesday the klonetrekken, a typical Kerkrade tradition, when carnival paraders, (parents mostly with their small children) from the surrounding hamlets, alone or in groups, dress up, stroll through the streets making music, singing carnival songs going from pub to pub, eventually ending up at the market in the centre of Kerkrade, where they celebrate carnival together. This endless procession of carnival paraders – some never reach the town centre because they are having such a good time in some pub – on their way to the market is called the clownsparade or klonetrekken in the Kerkrade dialect.

As a photographer I am now more interested in photographing d´r Jroese Tsóg and klonetrekken than in participating in all the merrymaking, but I do regularly catch myself singing loudly along with the carnival songs, and I forget to take photos. 

Below some photo's of both d´r Jroese Tsóg and klonetrekken.