Looking ahead - Diary Dates 
Welcome to the Inverness Festivals News Page

First of all thanks for all the wonderful messages of support which you sent in following The Red Hot Highland Fling Hogmanay Show. You certainly did help us end 2017 in style and we have loved seeing all your memories of the Show appearing on social media!

Below you will find our updated list of future featured events; but don't forget to visit our Events Listings Page where you will find the latest details in our What's On Section which is edited and updated every day by our friends at the Inverness City Advertiser.


20/7/2018 Inverness Gala Night
featuring Inverness Wheelbarrow Grand Prix (6pm High Street)
Highlands Strongest Man and Strongest Woman (7pm Northern Meeting Park)
21/7/2018 Inverness Highland Games
29/7/2018 Little Mix in concert (Bught Park)
08/09/2018 Simple Minds Concert
09/09/2018 Kirking of the Council
18-20/10/2018 Inverness Street Festival
19-21/10/2018 Loch Ness Knitting Festival
27-28/10/2018 Halloween on Ness Islands
5/11/2018 Civic Bonfire and Fireworks Display
18/11/2018 Inverness Christmas Lights Switch On
14-16/12/2018 Winter Wonderland
31/12/2018 Red Hot Highland Fling Hogmanay Show

For further information please contact:
The Inverness Festivals Team
c/o Gerry Reynolds (Inverness Events Manager) 01463 785006
Email: gerry.reynolds@highland.gov.uk

NEWFLASH - Have a look at this wonderful video which has been produced by the City Marketing Group. Nice job folks - we love it!

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The Countdown to Christmas gets underway in Inverness on Sunday November 19th as Santa arrived to help Provost Helen Carmichael turn on the city’s dazzling display of Christmas Lights.

Families gathered at Crown Primary School at 5.15pm on the night to take part in the Christmas Torchlight Procession to the Town House with the Provost and Santa and host Nicola McAlley of STV.

This year’s parade was led by the combined City of Inverness Senior and Youth Pipe Bands in suitable Christmas attire and featured a number of costumed characters and stiltwalkers.

The Parade ended outside Inverness Town House where there was a surprise in store for everybody when the building unexpectedly burst into light.

The marchers then followed Santa the Old High Church for the annual Christmas Carol Service - Ding Dong Merrily Old High which featured a number of much loved traditional favourites performed by the Joint choir from St Stephen's and the Old High churches.

Councillor Bet McAllister of the Inverness Events and Festivals Working Group said: “Our Christmas Lights Switch On event is undoubtedly one of the highlights of the year for the younger members of our community and it was great to seeing the excitement in their eyes. There is always something magical about the moment when they get their first glimpse of Santa Claus as he arrives to help the Provost turn on our Christmas Lights.“

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The bands for Scotland’s biggest free Hogmanay concert The Red Hot Highland Fling in Inverness were announced at the City of Inverness Area Committee by the Chair of the Inverness Events and Festivals Working Group Councillor Graham Ross.

Opening the show in Northern Meeting Park Arena will be Hò-rò; who were winners of the “Danny Kyle award” at Celtic Connections. Hailing from the Scottish Highlands & Islands, Hò-rò have quickly become amongst the most popular news bands on the European music festival scene and will come to Inverness after successful tours to Germany, France & Belgium. Hò-rò were recently in the news for all the wrong reasons when they lost all their equipment when their van went up in flames following an arson attack in Glasgow. Thanks to the generosity of fellow performers the band have been able to borrow everything they need to complete their autumn tour and make their debut at The Red Hot Highland Fling.

Hò-rò will be followed by two former winners of the prestigious “Scottish Traditional Music Live Band of the Year Award” who have been booked to appear on the night. Skipinnish have been given the honour of headlining the show in the prestigious middle position; which is a tradition that is unique to the Inverness Hogmanay Show; and enables as many youngsters as possible to see the headline act at this family friendly show. The band have played a string of headline appearances at some of Britain’s biggest music festivals in 2017; and their unique mix of traditional and contemporary music has firmly established them one of the most popular live bands to be found in Scotland today.

Closing the show, and making sure that the music pauses just in time for a spectacular fireworks display at midnight will be Skerryvore. A firm favourite with the Inverness crowd Skerryvore are one of the few bands in the world that organises its own annual music festival, Oban Live, which now attracts over 10,000 visitors each year. This year’s show will see Scott Wood, the newest member of the Skerryvore line up make his debut at The Red Hot Highland Fling. Scott Wood, who plays pipes and whistles, has replaced founder member Martin Gillespie who, in common with many pipers, developed ‘focal hand dystonia,’ a neurological condition which affects the hands causing involuntary contractions, spasms and often discomfort. This was the same condition that led to the retirement of Stuart Cassells, founder member of the Red Hot Chilli Pipers.

The show will be hosted by Comedian Craig Hill who has travelled the world with his sell out show “Someone’s gonna get kilt!” since he was last seen stealing a crane and taking a selfie from 80 feet up in the air at last year’s show.

The Chair of the Inverness Events and Festivals Working Group Councillor Graham Ross added “ The Red Hot Highland Fling is now firmly established as one of the UK’s top Hogmanay experiences and attracts visitors from far and wide to the Highlands. In addition to introducing the performers for 2017; I am also pleased to confirm that the City of Inverness Area Committee has given approval for another Hogmanay Show in 2018”.

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An estimated 20,000 spectators gathered on the banks of the River Ness on Saturday 4th November as the Highland Council's annual Display took place in Bught Park.

After enjoying performances by the City of Inverness Youth Pipe Band and the Fly Agaric Firestormers Display Team; the crowd cheered loudly when Provost Helen Carmichael stepped forward to light the giant 50 foot high bonfire, which quickly roared into life to everyone's delight.

After a short delay to enable the Fireworx Scotland Display Team to make some last minute adjustments as the gusts of wind increased in strength across the field; the spectacular 20 minute display under a full moon was enjoyed by all.

Afterwards Councillor Trish Robertson of the Inverness Events and Festivals Working Group thanked the thousands of spectators who had answered the Council's call to park well away from the site and walk to the event. "The support of the drivers bringing families to the show played a major role in keeping the traffic congestion to a minimum on the night and was greatly appreciated. "

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If you are attending our bonfire display on Saturday November 4th don't forget to use the city centre car parks and allow yourself extra time to walk to the site.

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REVIEW 2017 Halloween Show  
With over 20,000 visitors over the two nights our 2017 Halloween Show got this year's Winter Festival off to a great start. Our friends at Eden Court Creative, Arts in Motion and Limelight Event Services did a great job bringing the UNDERWORLD!to life.

Big thank you to all the folk who remembered that parking around Bught Park was very limited and helped us by using one of the 2800 plus spaces which are available in the City Centre and walked along to the show.

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