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AMSTERDAM – The streets of Amsterdam are awash in the color orange in honor of the Netherlands' ruling House of Oranje-Nassau, as officials prepare for a once-in-a-generation rotation of royal titles — and the rest of the country gets ready to party.
National broadcaster NOS reported that Crown Prince Willem-Alexander and his family were in the Royal Palace on the city's central Dam square Monday morning, rehearsing protocols for the ceremonies Tuesday. Queen Beatrix is to abdicate, Willem-Alexander become king, and his 9-year-old daughter Princess Catharina-Amalia become crown princess.
In the historic city center, vendors are hawking orange clothes; shopkeepers are hanging up orange flags and rolling in countless kegs of beer; while city workers are busy cleaning the streets and canals and setting up bright orange temporary urinals.