Magical start to 2019 Oban Winter Festival

Elves Rowan Gemmell, Erin Farrely and Isabella Nicholson help with the present donations at the Rockfield Centre.

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The ninth Oban Winter Festival got off to a magical start last Friday as the Winter Queen, riding her unicorn, and her entourage cast their spell around the town to light the way for an action packed 2019 event.

Bumper turn-outs to weekend events, promised plenty more fun in store in the days to come.

Organisers said the Food and Craft markets around the town had been very well attended. Volunteers at Argyll Animal Aid  were delighted with the turnout at their event in the Corran Halls, while the distillery and Perle Hotel markets also enjoyed a huge footfall.

‘The town was really busy and there was a great atmosphere,’ said a spokesperson for the organising committee. ‘Friday night’s parade went down extremely well with retailers and residents along George Street and beyond adding to the magic.’

The enchanted woodland trail in Glencruitten was deemed ‘absolutely amazing’ by attendees, while Gary Goldie’s (foraged food and whisky pairing) event, attracted an international audience.

Lego lovers stacked up to see the displays on show at the Oban Winter Bricks event, with enthusiasts of all ages testing their creative skills at St Columba’s Cathedral Hall.

More than 500 visitors of all ages attended the Northern Lighthouse Board open days over Saturday and Sunday.

And there’s still plenty to look forward to, including today’s late night shopping, plus the much anticipated Reindeer Parade, organised by Bid4Oban, on Saturday which ends with the Christmas light’s ‘Switch On’.

Saturday also sees Frozen 2 feature at Oban’s Phoenix Cinema, a Tartan Dash parkrun, the haggis hurling championships, and Food and Craft markets throughout the town.

Oban Photographic Club, in conjunction with Under The Skin Camera Club, will be holding a Christmas Market at the Rockfield Centre on Friday and Saturday, where there will be an exhibition and sale of photographic merchandise.

The event provides an opportunity for both clubs to come together to promote photography and club membership in Oban.

Sunday features the Whisky and Haggis Festivals, Dunollie Makes Christmas, Atlantis Leisure’s roller disco and snowboard simulator and Rockfield’s winter wonderland grotto.

Rounding off the day will be the Oban Winter Festival Light and Fire Show at the Distillery Courtyard where the Parade of Haggis Hunters and an auction of Christmas hats will take place. OHS Pipe Band will be in attendance along with Oban FM.

On Monday November 25, there will be a hand bells and Christmas Carols concert, featuring Muckairn Ringers, Fumiko Miller and Mairi Harrower, in Oban Parish Church.

Main pic 15_T47_WinterFest_Polestar_AlasdairandAnnieBullock: Alasdair and Annie Bullock were in the driving seat at NLB Open Day.