LONDON (AP) – The UK will celebrate Queen Elizabeth II’s 70th birthday with a military parade, block parties and a contest to create a new platinum jubilee dessert, the Palace of Buckingham.
Elizabeth will become the first British monarch to reign for seven decades on February 6, and the anniversary celebrations will end with a four-day weekend of events from June 2-5. It was not immediately clear what events the Queen, 95, would attend after doctors recently advised her to get more rest.
The weekend, which includes an additional public holiday in honor of the Queen, kicks off Thursday, June 2 with Trooping the Color, the annual military parade that marks the Queen’s official birthday.
This will be followed on June 3 by a Thanksgiving service in honor of the Queen’s service to the UK, her other realms and the Commonwealth.
In a nod to the Coronation Chicken – the concoction of cold chicken, curry powder, mayonnaise and other ingredients served at garden parties marking the Queen’s official ascension to the throne – the palace will sponsor the Platinum Pudding competition to create a new dessert dedicated to the monarch.
The competition will be open to UK residents from the age of 8 and will be judged by TV culinary figures Mary Berry and Monica Galetti, as well as Buckingham Palace head chef Mark Flanagan. The winning recipe will be published before the Jubilee weekend so that it can be part of the celebrations.
Some 1,400 people have already signed up to host the Jubilee Lunches on June 5, with flagship events taking place in London and at the Eden Project in Cornwall. The palace expects there to be some 200,000 neighborhood events across the UK
The weekend will end with a show honoring the service of the monarch and looking towards the next 70 years. Dancers, musicians, servicemen and key workers “will tell the story of the Queen’s reign” as the children create a picture of their hopes and aspirations for the planet, the palace said.
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