Entrepreneurs offer a look behind the scenes at the Red Light District
Business owners in the Amsterdam Red Light District are offering a look behind the scenes this weekend. They hope to educate people about what the famous neighborhood has to offer.
On Saturday and Sunday between 12 p.m. and 6 p.m., about 40 entrepreneurs will show what they do in this part of the old town. The program includes karaoke at The Upcycle and a tour of the De Prael brewery. At the Prostitution Information Center (PIC), a sex worker will explain what it is like to work behind the window in the Red Light District. Visitors can also take a look at the community center of the Salvation Army, experience pole dancing in the Banana Bar or be entertained by a drag queen at Paleis van de Weemoed.
"The lively neighborhood with its rich history, tolerant character and diverse group of entrepreneurs is often portrayed as one-sided, low-quality and seedy," write the initiators. "Nothing could be further from the truth and we will show that during the Red Light District Open Days."
The district is the site of growing controversy. Amsterdam Mayor Femke Halsema announced new crowd-curbing measures in the Red Light District in May, which many entrepreneurs opposed. Plans have also been in the works for the last few years to relocate sex workers from the Red Light District to an "erotic center" on the outskirts of the city. Many sex workers are against these plans and are skeptical about the safety of the new location.
Reporting by ANP