John had every right to question my sanity when I decided to hit the streets of Dumfries with my camera to document Peter Pan Xmas Lights Switch On performance at the Plainstanes for my Dumfries Diaries.

It drizzled on and off all day but a real downpour was on the forecast to coincide with the start of the show. At first I decided to take just a plastic camera rain cover with me, but John persuaded me to pack a large hooded poncho, just in case. And it came really handy!

Xmas Lights Switch On is an annual urban public event In Dumfries, but this year Pete Renwick and his team promised to produce something spectacular, involving Scottish circus, fire theatre and aerial dancers. How I could have missed all this?

This year’s extravaganza was commissioned by the Peter Pan Moat Brae Trust as a finale to their Dreams For The Future festival, part of Scotland’s Year of the Young People, and of course it was Peter Pan themed.

Captain Hook and his fierce pirates on stilts from Delighters physical performance theatre roamed the streets of Dumfries on their way from Moat Brae, a birth place of J. M. Barrie’s story.

Captain Hook on the streets of Dumfries for Peter Pan Xmas Lights Switch On show
Captain Hook and his pirates outside Midsteeple for Peter Pan themed show in Dumfries

Meanwhile, Scottish traditional singer Robyn Stapleton delighted the crowds with Xmas carols.

The clock of Midsteeple lit for Lights Switch On celebrations
Scottish traditional singer Robyn Stapleton sings carols at Dumfries Xmas Lights Switch On festivities

We were treated with a whimsical oriental fire dance which was parodied by Captain Hook’s pirates.

Fire dancer from Delighters theatre performs in Dumfries
Dual fire fans dance on the stage outside Midsteeple
Pirate dances with fire at Peter Pan themed Xmas lights performance

Tinker Bell from All or Nothing aerial dance company made an appearance with some awe-inspiring air acrobatics under the roof of the Plainstanes stage.

Tinker Bell's aerial dance under the roof of the Plainstanes stage in Dumfries
Tinker Bell aerial dancer greets Donnhamers

Peter Pan fought an epic battle with his arch enemy Captain Hook on top of Midsteeple to return the stolen key from Xmas Lights Switch On machine.

Peter Pan fights Captain Hook on the roof of Midsteeple to reclaim the stolen key from Xmas Lights Switch on machine
Peter Pan triumphant on top of Midsteeple in Dumfries

At this point my gear were absolutely drenched with rain and the lens and viewfinder fogged off forcing me to stop shooting and enjoy the rest of this delightful show as a spectator…

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