Be a-Maze-d at Aberdeen’s new festive offerings
Aberdeen is set to become a winter wonderland this week with a bumper selection of festive offerings that are sure to be on everyone’s Christmas wish list.
Two brand new festive goodies for Aberdeen’s Winter Festival 2016 will be revealed.
The first is the Twelve Days of Christmas Wooden Carvings Trail. Local chainsaw wood carver Garry Shand was commissioned to create 12 wooden sculptures inspired by the popular carol The Twelve Days of Christmas. The wooden sculptures will be revealed on a phased basis starting from tomorrow (Thursday 24 November) and into December. Over the coming weeks a teaser campaign will encourage people to find the 12 sculptures across the city centre during the festive period.
Look out for a Partridge in a Pear tree tomorrow at the Castlegate.
The second is Aberdeen’s Christmas Tree Maze, in Union Terrace Gardens, which opens on Friday (25 November) and will be great fun as children and adults-alike try to make their way to the elves workshop and back.
At the entrance of the maze, visitors pick up a word card and as they make their way round the maze they collect stamps, which once completed spells a festive word. Ticket holders will eventually find their way to the elf hut and after they hand in their completed word card they will be rewarded with a pouch of treasure.
The maze is designed and operated by the successful entertainment company Underbelly.
Another popular event taking place on Thursday is the Christmas Tree Switch On at 7pm at the Castlegate. The Christmas tree is an annual gift from the people of Stavanger to the people of Aberdeen. The Lord Provost of Aberdeen George Adam will be joined by the Deputy Mayor of Stavanger Bjorg Tysdal Moe for a carol service for everyone to enjoy.
From Thursday evening people making their way around the city centre will be able to see Aberdeen’s most iconic building Marischal College illuminated for in traditional festive colours. Christmas trees will brighten up Broad Street while Littlejohn Street will see the popular leopard lit up on his favourite spot on the grassy mound.
Leader of Aberdeen City Council, Councillor Jenny Laing said: “It will definitely look like Christmas has arrived when the festivities get under way on Thursday. I have seen chainsaw wood carver Garry Shand’s work before so I’m really looking forward to seeing the Twelve Days of Christmas Wooden Sculpture Trail.
“And, with the Christmas Village due to open on Friday Aberdeen’s Winter Festival will be off to a cracking start with events, activities and things to see continuing right through into the New Year.”
Deputy Leader of Aberdeen City Council, Councillor Marie Boulton said: “It’s very exciting that we have two new attractions for this year’s Winter Festival. I’m sure they will be extremely popular. I can’t wait to experience Aberdeen’s Christmas Tree Maze. There’s so much on offer over the festive period and a great way to enjoy some festive fun while out Christmas shopping.”
Below is a list of the forthcoming events in Aberdeen’s Winter Festival programme.
Twelve Days of Christmas Wooden Carvings Trail
Thursday 24 November throughout December, Union Terrace Gardens and various city centre locations
Local chainsaw wood carver Garry Shand was commissioned to create 12 wooden sculptures inspired by the theme of the popular carol The Twelve Days of Christmas. Located across the city centre, this mini-trail is sure to be a popular with all ages.
Christmas Tree Switch On
7pm on Thursday 24 November at the Castlegate
Aberdeen’s twin town of Stavanger in Norway has once again kindly donated a Christmas tree to the people of the Granite City.
Join the Lord Provost of Aberdeen George Adam and Bjorg Tysdal Moe, the Deputy Mayor of Stavanger and Stavanger singer Hanne Vasshus for a short carol service before the Christmas tree lights are switched on.
Thursday 24 November, Broad Street
See Aberdeen’s most iconic building illuminated for the winter period in traditional festive colours. Christmas trees will brighten up Broad Street while Littlejohn Street will see the popular leopard return to his favourite spot on the grassy mound.
Aberdeen’s Christmas Tree Maze
Friday 25 November, Union Terrace Gardens
10am-9pm Sat & Sun
£4 per person, children under 13 must be accompanied by a full paying adult
Friday 25 November 2016 - Sunday 08 January 2017, Union Terrace
Aberdeen Inspired in partnership with Aberdeen City Council and Codona’s are thrilled to announce the return of the Christmas Village. This year children will love the Helter-Skelter and thrill seekers will welcome the return of The Thriller! The open-air ice rink will be larger and there will be double the number of beautifully decorated market stalls. We also welcome back the entertainment marquee ‘Moose’ which will host entertainment throughout the four weeks.
The Trinity Centre Reindeer Parade
12noon on Sunday 27 November, Union Street
Santa and his Cairngorm reindeer will travel from Castlegate up to the Trinity Shopping Centre.
For more details visit: www.trinityaberdeen.co.uk
Christmas Lights Switch On Parade
5.30pm on Sunday 27 November, Union Street
The Lord Provost of Aberdeen George Adam will lead the colourful parade as it makes its way down from Albyn Place along Union Street to the Castlegate. This year’s theme is Snow and Ice.
Blessing of the Nativity Scene
11am on Monday 28 November, St Nicholas Kirkyard, Union Street
All are welcome to join Aberdeen Churches Together for the official blessing of the crib. The nativity scene is an important reminder of what the festivities are all about.
Light refreshments will be available following the service.
With a great selection of independent boutique stores, colourful markets and popular high street shops Aberdeen is the perfect destination to soak up a real festive atmosphere.
Whatever brings you to Aberdeen, whether it’s Christmas shopping, a city break or visiting friends or family there are also tourist attractions nearby, including whisky distilleries, museums and art galleries to enjoy. For more details and ideas for a great time in Aberdeen visit visitabdn.com
There’s never been a better time to visit and stay in Aberdeen than during the festive season. Take advantage of fantastic accommodation offers at a variety of hotels in Aberdeen City and Shire. For further details and the latest offers from aberdeenhotels.org
Get the official winter Festival Spree app now and start saving thousands while you’re out and about shopping, eating and playing in and around Aberdeen. For Two for One deal, free admissions, cinema tickets and lots more get the Spree App from spreebook.com
The following temporary traffic restrictions will be in place to ensure public safety for Aberdeen’s Christmas Lights Switch On and the Trinity Centre’s Santa Parade in the city centre this weekend.
Saturday 26 November
- From 6pm on Saturday 26 November and 6.30pm on 27 November Albyn Place, Aberdeen, will be subject to a ban on parking between Albyn Grove and Alford Place, except for vehicles associated with the Aberdeen City Council’s Christmas Lights Switch On event.
Sunday 27 November
- Between 11.30am until 1pm on Union Street will be closed between, Union Terrace and Broad Street. Also between 11.30am and 1pm, and again from 4.30pm until 7pm King Street, Aberdeen, between East North Street and Castle Street, the full length of Castle Street, Aberdeen, will be closed, as will Market Street between Union Street and Hadden Street.
- Albyn Place, Aberdeen, will be closed between its junctions with Alford Place and Albyn Grove, from 4pm until 6.30pm.
- From 4.30pm until 7pm Back Wynd between its junctions with Union Street and Little Belmont Street, and also St. Catherine’s Wynd, Aberdeen from its junction with Netherkirkgate and Union Street.
- From 4.30pm until 7pm the full length of Union Street and Bridge Street, between its junctions with Wapping Street, and Union Street will be closed. A number of alternative routes will be available.
- The one way restriction on Exchequer Row, Aberdeen and Shiprow from 11.30am and 1pm and again from 5pm until 7pm will be temporarily suspended.
- Between 11.30am and 1pm and again from 5pm until 6.30pm the ban on right turns from King Street onto West North Street will be temporarily suspended, as will the ban on right turns from Union Street, Aberdeen, onto Bridge Street and the right turns from Holburn Street, Aberdeen, onto Willowbank Road, and the right turns from Skene Street, Aberdeen, onto Rosemount Viaduct.
- On either side of Little Belmont Street, Aberdeen, with the exception of any waiting taxi, from 11.30am and 1pm and again from 5pm until 7pm. This is to provide a temporary taxi rank for this period.
- From 5pm until 7pm there will be a suspension of all waiting for any purpose, with the exception of any waiting taxi on the west side of Chapel Street, north of the junction with Thistle Street for 53 metres or thereby. This is to provide a temporary taxi rank for this period.
- From 5pm until 7pm the one way system on Chapel Street, Aberdeen, between its junctions with Thistle Street and Union Street, will be suspended and a one way restriction will be in place on Chapel Street, Aberdeen, between its junctions with Thistle Street and Little Chapel Street. The direction of travel will be northbound.
For further information on Aberdeen’s Winter Festival visit: www.aberdeenchristmas.co.uk