Nithraid Returns to Dumfries to Celebrate International Relationships

August 11th sees The Stove’s sixth staging of Nithraid, Dumfries’ River Festival, which is a fun free family event that takes place on and around the River Nith. This year’s event starts off with two races, one for sailing boats, and one for coastal rowing boats – each racing up river on the highest tide of the year to finish in the town centre. While waiting for the boats to arrive, you can enjoy the Nithraid Village at Mill Green (opposite Whitesands), from 12 noon until 4pm, and then Nithraid Nightime activities start from 7pm.

Sal Cuddihy, Project Manager for Nithraid, commented: “It’s an exciting year for Nithraid as we celebrate International Relationships with young people from around the world through the Amaze Me Leader Project. We will also be continuing the festivities into the evening again this year, with some live entertainment in a relaxed atmosphere. It’s an exciting project to be a part of, and we hope plenty of people come along to get involved and cheer on the sailors.”

Nithraid and its famous ‘Salty Coo’ is a celebration of the town’s long relationship with its river, highlighting the way the Nith connected Dumfries to the rest of the world through trade, goods (including Coos) and sailpower. It is created and produced by The Stove Network and is part of the groups mission to create opportunities for local people to come together and be part of shaping a future Dumfries – a future in which the river will be a crucial part!

Visitors to Nithraid are invited to join in with a full day of activities. The Salty Coo procession will kick off the day, leaving from Fountain Square on High Street at noon and arriving at the Mill Green at approximately 12.30pm. This year, Dumfries based production and arts company ‘The Maddjakkalls’ have been commissioned to create a magical and mysterious procession with their collective of artists and performers. They have been hosting several workshops and working with various community groups across the town to create sacred geometric shapes which will be used as part of the Nithraid Procession.

Blou Hyland, Performer and Co-Producer for the Madjakkalls commented: “We are so excited to be bringing a sense of ancient and sacred meaning to this year’s Nithraid Procession. We are thrilled to be bringing such a magical treat to the event and hope that everyone will follow the beat with their feet as we march through the street.”

Once the Salty Coo arrives at the Mill Green, visitors are invited to the Nithraid Village which provides a jam-packed day of family friendly activities for all ages, which includes live music, food stalls and creative workshops which include stone carving, public art, zine making, upcycling, origami, badge making and recycling.

New for 2018, Rosefield Mills will play a part in Nithraid, at 4pm Dumfries DJ duo, Double Down Disco, will be presenting their specially commissioned sonic artwork for the Mills, and visitors are invited to get down to a unique Rosefield vibration.

Then at 7pm, members of the public are invited back to the Mill Green for ‘Nithraid Nightime’ which includes music and evening entertainment, flighting competitions, Chinese Lanterns on the Nith, story-telling and campfires, films with Reel to Real and food.

For more information, including how to take part in the races (or anything else!), please visit www.thestove.org/nithraid

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