Paisley is gearing up for a spooky entertainment extravaganza at the weekend when the annual Halloween festival once again takes over the town centre.
The hugely popular annual event – run by Renfrewshire Council – is one of only a few of its kind in Scotland and will take place over Friday evening and all-day Saturday.
The first day of fun runs from 6 to 9pm on Friday, starting with a lantern-lit parade down the High Street from the UWS main entrance to Abbey Close, led by the stunning Spark! LED drummers.
Abbey Close itself will be home to a fire garden run by outdoor arts specialists Walk the Plank, featuring fire-breathing sculptures, illuminations and much more.
Paisley Town Hall will be Spook Central, with Halloween arts and crafts, family disco, storytelling, puppet shows and music sessions with Feis Phaislig.
Saturday will see more of the same from 12 until 9pm, but with the addition of a main stage featuring live music from local musicians and dance groups and entertainment from Pulse FM DJs.
Both days will also have a funfair, street entertainers and a great selection of outdoor food vendors.
This will be the third year of the Halloween Festival and kicks off Renfrewshire’s major winter events programme, with the Paisley Fireworks display (Sat 5 Nov) and Christmas Lights Switch-on (Sat 12 Nov) set to follow.
And this year will see a special treat with the world premiere of a new performance by award-winning visual theatre artist Al Seed taking place in Paisley Town Hall’s Loggia room.
Described as a dark gothic melodrama inspired by Edgar Allan Poe’s classic The Raven, tickets for shows on Wednesday and Thursday are on sale now via www.renfrewshireleisure.com
The show is one of the first to be funded by Renfrewshire’s Culture, Heritage and Events fund, which aims to boost cultural capacity in the run-up to Paisley’s bid for UK City of Culture 2021.
Renfrewshire Council Leader Mark Macmillan said: “We are delighted to be welcoming the Paisley Halloween Festival back for another year – it has been a hugely popular family day out with locals and visitors alike since it started in 2014.
“Again, we expect thousands of people to descend on Paisley town centre over the two days, providing an economic boost to the local area and local traders.
“This year’s winter events are extra special as the last ones to take place before the town’s bid for UK City of Culture 2021 goes in next year.
“And with that in mind, we are delighted to welcome critically-acclaimed performer Al Seed to the town for a unique performance made possible by the Paisley 2021 bid.
“But the event is also a great showcase of the talents of the thriving grassroots creative scene we have here in the town.
“That goes from the young people making costumes and starring in the parade, to the many music and dance performers of various ages who will take to the main stage on the Saturday.”
The groups taking part in the weekend include Independent State of Happiness, Right To Dance, Street Stuff, Floor4orce, Solid Rock Cheerleaders and Rock Us Community Choir.
For more information, visit www.paisley2021.com