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Tarland celebrates return of annual food and music festival

Scottish folk band Talisk will be performing at the festival
Scottish folk band Talisk will be performing at the festival

A popular harvest-time food and music festival in Aberdeenshire is returning for an eighth year.

Tarland Food and Music Festival went virtual last year, but will be back in the village between September 23-26.

The festival celebrates local food and the thriving music scene through a series of events across the village.

A headline concert on the Saturday night will include a performance by one of Scotland’s most popular folk groups, Talisk.

The award-winning trio from Glasgow have previously toured the world and will be accompanied by guitarist and melodeon player Tim Edey and piper and whistle player Ross Ainslie on the night.

Ross Ainslie and Tim Edey are supporting Talisk. Supplied by Tarland Food and Music Festival.

On the Friday, festival favourite Paul Anderson will be playing his fiddle to his home crowd alongside pianist Brian McAlpine as they accompany The Karen Matheson Band, the solo project of the Capercaillie’s lead singer.

The fiddler will also be leading a walking musical tour around the Howe of Cromar, while Peter Craig from the Cromar History Group will share stories of past village life with walkers.

Both the Friday and Saturday night concerts will be available to watch in-person as well as being live-streamed.

Fun for the whole family

Festival-goers will be entertained in Tarland Square by the Highland Granite Pipes and Drums and the Finzean Ukelele Group and on the Sunday there will be the opportunity to join in with traditional music sessions and workshops at The Aberdeen Arms.

The festival will include the return of the Tarland Local Market in the MacRobert Hall on the Saturday between 10am and 12pm. Entry will be free and a range of local foods will be on sale, as well as teas and home-baking from the Cromar Senior Citizens.

A number of food and drink workshops have been planned for the weekend, including cake decorating with Shannon Black, foraging and preserving with Eleanor Brown and whisky tasting with expert Gordon Muir.

Paul Anderson will be supporting The Karen Matheson Band at the festival. Supplied by Tarland Food and Music Festival.

Over two evenings, the Tarland Tearooms will be transformed into an Italian restaurant so locals can enjoy a range of Italian cuisine, while those who prefer Scottish fare can visit the Commercial Hotel for an “all you can eat buffet” before the Saturday concert.

The Cromar Community Food Surplus and Tarland Climate Crisis Group will be combining activities and entertainment for children alongside their food surplus pop-up pantry.

In a festival first, people are invited to take part in the World Oatcake Championship to battle it out for the title of “Oatcake Champion of the World”. People of all ages can enter the contest which will be judged by Matt Price, head chef at Douneside House.

Tickets for the Tarland Food and Music festival are available to buy here.

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