The Christmas Spirit was alive and well in Moray at the weekend as town centres were bathed in multi-coloured hues to officially kick-off the festive period.
Elgin played host to the arrival of Santa Claus and his many reindeer, as they paraded through the high street and wowed the children in attendance.
A day of festivities began with a performance by Elgin Musical Theatre whose members took to the stage at 11am and got the audience in the spirit with a selection of rousing Christmas carols.
St Giles Theatre Group, Moray Concert Brass, SE Productions and Liberty Kids also performed ahead of the day’s main event.
The Christmas lights were switched on at 4.15pm, with Lily Brims from Linkwood Primary having the privilege of hitting the button and bathing Elgin town centre in light.
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The youngster secured the honour by winning a schools’ competition that challenged Moray pupils to design the best Christmas stocking.
There was fun for all the family away from the main stage entertainment too, with fairground rides and stalls, some free sweets for children and gift and whisky stalls for the adults.
Lossiemouth also held its own spectacular Christmas light display and offered a different spectacle to that in Elgin.
Bad weather failed to detract from the festive fun, with fireworks and the addition of a celebrity name ensuring the coastal town was teeming with locals and visitors, all hoping to catch a glimpse of Emmerdale actor Anthony Quinlan.
Best known for playing Pete Barton in the soap, he thanked the busy crowd for showing up in large numbers despite the heavy rain and wind.
Moray Council Leader Graham Leadbitter volunteered at the Elgin event organised by Elgin BID and was pleased to see the town centre busy all day on Saturday.
He said: “It was great to see the town busy all day and to see fantastic crowds out for the switch-on itself.
“There were many activities going on for all the family throughout the day and all the entertainment on stage gathered a big crowd.
“It was also good to see more volunteers than ever taking part and making sure the event ran smoothly, including the army cadets.”