It’s the most wonderful time of the year…

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Well….that’s just my humble opinion at least. Whilst I do LOVE the fringe and festival in August and all the food, smells, sights, circus and fun around every corner – there is something so exciting about this season, with the dark cosy nights, the twinkling lights and the hint of magic in the air…

This weekend is light night and the official start to Edinburgh’s Christmas which is once again bursting at the seams with a host of fun activities and events this year. Light night is Sunday 18th November from 3pm and is a free event for all to enjoy, which encapsulates the true spirit of the festive season: family and the community. Choirs from across Scotland will perform in front of an expected audience of around 20,000 people, as  George Street is lit up with fireworks. The Christmas Tree on the Mound, a gift to the City of Edinburgh Council from Hordaland County Council in Norway, will be lit as part of the Light Night switch-on.

Other free events to look out for over the festival are :

24 Doors of Advent – From 1st – 24th December go and discover an exciting new place each day of advent, as this real-life advent calendar takes you through a different door, throughout December as Edinburgh opens its doors to showcase the unique buildings in the city. A full list of what buildings are featured this year can be found here .

 

Winter Windows – The Winter Windows form a magical pathway from West Parliament Square – outside St Giles to Newhaven. Each stained-glass window is designed by a budding young artist from Edinburgh’s schools to the theme of Kindness. This year’s Winter Windows is working in conjunction with St Giles Cathedral.

And of course the Christmas market will be here again, tempting us with the smells of mulled wine and delicious foods…..Santa land is currently settling back into Princes Street gardens to entertain the kids, ice rinks are being smoothed into place and something very special is brewing on George Street….

 

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Diwali Celebration Saturday 3rd November

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The dark nights have fully arrived, time to embrace warm hats, scarves, gloves and enjoy all the beautiful sunsets we are getting at the moment. With the dark nights, we also get some of the most fun festivals and celebrations, including both Halloween/Samhuinn and Bonfire Night this week…and Diwali. Lots to celebrate !!

Diwali is an Indian Festival of Lights and this festival on Saturday is sure to be spectacular. Edinburgh Diwali is an initiative by the Lord Provost of Edinburgh to bring Diwali-Festival of Lights, the most famous Indian Festival to Edinburgh so that the mainstream community can Share, Participate and Celebrate this beautiful festival.

Dancers, music, lanterns, fireworks, puppets and four giant Hindu Gods will mark Edinburgh’s celebration of the South Asian Festival of Light.

Starting with a parade at 2pm from outside the City Chambers on the Royal Mile. The parade will feature four giant Hindu Gods: Ganesha, the Elephant God; Hanuman, the Monkey God and Commander in Chief of Rama’s Army; Shiva, God that destroys and transforms the Universe and the centrepiece float of Rama’s Horse-drawn Chariot carrying Rama, his wife Sita, his brother Lakshman and Hanuman returning from exile after killing Demon God Ravana.

At the end of the Edinburgh Diwali Parade (around 3.30pm) the Diwali celebrations move onto The Ross Bandstand in West Princes Street Gardens for performances ranging from A Taste of Bollywood to a dramatic enactment of the Return of Rama from Exile. Edinburgh Diwali Celebrations start around 4.15pm.

Dancers will be performing dances from different parts of India will be joined by Highland Dancers aImage result for edinburgh diwalind members of Scottish Ballet in a grand finale of a multicultural fusion of dance styles.

There will be a grand finale of fireworks at 7pm !

 

Festival of Physics 26th – 28th October

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The Festival of Physics is a celebration of the wonder of science, the power of curiosity and the inventions and discoveries that shape our world and our future.

Join the Institute of Physics between 26 – 28 October at Dynamic Earth for a packed three-day programme of scintillating science shows, hands-on workshops and inspiring experiences, plus creative conversations from the domains of music, theatre and art alongside talks and lectures for all ages. All events at the festival are free.

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From the edge of the universe to the heart of the atom, from spacetime to stardust, come and play with them.

Featuring loads of fun activities including making your own sundial, potions class, cooking with science, DIY orchestra, a laser garden and even a physics ceilidh it looks like there really is something for everyone !!! Definitely worth getting down to Dynamic Earth this weekend and seeing whats going on !

Quest for Oz……on until the 28th October

We were lucky enough to go to the opening night of ‘Quest For Oz’ last night…and it was fantastic!

It’s on from the 4- 28th October (not Mondays) 18.00 – 20.00 (every 30 mins)

It is the new visual event from the makers of Dragons of Drummohr .More adventures, more augmented reality, more theatrics for all the family!

After completing their Dragon trilogy with last year’s Dragons of Drummohr, Edinburgh’s innovative theatre company Vision Mechanics are turning their attention to one of the most beloved stories of all time, transforming the grounds of Drummohr House into the Land of Oz.

Audiences meet at the Wallyford Park & Ride, 33 The Loan, Wallyford, Musselburgh EH21 8BU, where the free Emerald City Shuttle Bus will be there to take you to the world of Oz.

Audiences are challenged to reunite the warring kingdom of Oz. Using the Quest for Oz app, the task is to search the grounds for the yellow bricks that The Tin Man, The Scarecrow and the Lion have saved, to try and rebuild the yellow brick road. As well as the task at hand, you will experience the Carnival of Dreams, step into the Bubble Garden of Glinda the Good, lose yourself in the Mind Maze, test your courage in the Blue Witch Badlands, and meet the Marvellous Professor Marvel.

Our personal favourites were meeting Dr. Wonder and the beautiful GlInda the Good …

 

We loved wandering around the amazingly lit up installation at night….the kids racing ahead to try and find all the pictures of bricks to use with the app. Be warned though – the app uses quite a lot of phone battery, so download it before you come along and make sure you’ve charged your phone fully to avoid disappointment !!! We spent over two hours collecting bricks and interacting with this incredible event……the kids were busily chatting away in the Emerald City shuttle bus about all the brilliant things they’d seen and how much fun they’d had !

The details in the costumes, set design and particularly the lighting are well worth a visit just in itself….go and immerse yourself in a very exciting adventure ! Highly, highly recommended…the later you go at night, the better it sparkles !! Good luck….

Prices 

Child: £8/£10/£12 

Family: £36/£45/£50 

Concession: £10/£12/£15 

Adult: £12/£15/£17.50 

For tickets: tickets.questforoz.org 

Septemberfest…Saturday 29th September

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Broughton High School are once again hosting their fabulous Septemberfest – featuring lots of fun indoor and outdoor activities and food.

Infact the poster shows heaps of great sounding, family friendly things like a bouncy castle, hula hooping, football, smoothie bike, face painting, magic shows and much more !

From 11am – 4pm, there’s plenty of time to get along and check it out !!