Wednesday 2 December, 2015

National Museums Scotland has revealed its Christmas and New Year events programme.

There is a jam-packed programme of events for all ages this winter – from seasonal science, ‘crafternoons’ and Burns Unbound at the National Museum of Scotland, to farmyard festivities at the National Museum of Rural Life’s Christmas Fair and Foal Show.

See listings below for the full festive line-up.

National Museum of Scotland

Chambers Street, Edinburgh, EH1 1JF

Winter Warm-up

Date: Sat 5 Dec 2015

Time: 14:00-17:00

Venue: National Museum of Scotland

Cost: Free (drop-in)

Suitable for: Everyone

Join our musical Winter Warm-up for an afternoon of festive performances by wind ensemble Sirocco winds, The Scottish Consort and brass quintet Bells Up.

Organised with Live Music Now Scotland.

Science Saturday: Deadly December

Date: Sat 5 Dec 2015

Time: 12:00-16:00

Venue: National Museum of Scotland

Cost: Free (drop-in)

Suitable for: Everyone

Seven fleas a-flying, six corsets crushing, five gold (neck) rings…join us for a fun, slightly twisted antidote to the usual Christmas frivolity. Discover the deadly lengths people will go to for beauty, meet a plague or two and make a molecular Christmas decoration to take home, at this month’s Science Saturday.

Christmas Choirs

Date: Sun 6 Dec & Sun 20 Dec 2015

Time: 15:00-16:00

Venue: National Museum of Scotland

Get into the festive spirit with Christmas concerts from local choirs at the National Museum of Scotland. This year we’ve invited three Edinburgh-based choirs – Accord, Edinburgh Renaissance Singers and Edinburgh Contemporary Choir - to bring some festive cheer to your museum visit.

Christmas Crafternoon

Date: Sat 12 Dec – Sun 13 Dec 2015

Time: 12:00-16:00

Venue: National Museum of Scotland

Cost: Free (drop-in)

Suitable for: Everyone

Come and make a lovely museum-inspired festive decoration to take home. Our crafts this year have been designed by 3rd Year Illustration students from Edinburgh College of Art as part of a joint project.

Supported by players of People’s Postcode Lottery.

Christmas Art Competition

Date: Sun 27 Dec – Tue 30 Dec2015

Time: 10:30-16:30

Venue: National Museum of Scotland

Cost: Free (drop-in)

Suitable for: Everyone

What in the museum will inspire you to get drawing this year? Take part in our popular annual art competition suitable for all ages and abilities. Basic materials and lots of encouragement provided.

Hogmanay Family Ceilidh

Date: Thu 31 Dec 2015

Time: 14:00-15:30

Venue: National Museum of Scotland

Cost: Free (drop-in)

Suitable for: Everyone

Enjoy an afternoon of whirling and birling for all ages with the Canongate Cadjers Ceilidh Band. It's enthusiasm not experience that counts!

Supported by players of People’s Postcode Lottery.

Wee Scotland

Date: Fri 1 Jan 2016

Time: 12:00-17:00

Venue: National Museum of Scotland

Cost: Free, some activities must be pre-booked, visit www.edinburghshogmanay.com for more information

Suitable for: Families

Welcoming all those under 10 for arts and crafts, storytelling, music and theatre in the most unexpected forms - discover the Museum like you’ve never seen before.

Part of Edinburgh’s Hogmanay, presented by Pleasance Kids and National Museums Scotland.

The Final Fling

Date: Fri 1 Jan 2016

Time: 17:00-18:30

Venue: National Museum of Scotland

Cost: Free

Suitable for: Everyone

Join us for the final festival fling of Edinburgh’s Hogmanay, a ceilidh in the Grand Gallery with Edinburgh supremos the Portobello Ceilidh Band.

Part of Edinburgh’s Hogmanay.

Burns Unbound

Date: Sun 24 Jan 2016

Times: 10:00-17:00

Venue: National Museum of Scotland

Cost: Free (drop-in)

Suitable for: Everyone

Celebrate our national bard with a packed programme of Burns-themed activities for all ages. Join us for a day of music - performances by Randolph’s Leap, Cherry Grove Granny Green, Robyn Stapleton and Claire Hastings,– dancing, storytelling and mice!

Burns Unbound is supported through Scotland’s Winter Festivals, a programme of events managed by EventScotland, part of VisitScotland, on behalf of the Scottish Government.

Build it! Adventures with LEGO Bricks

Date: 29 Jan – 17 Apr 2016

Time: 10:00-17:00

Venue: National Museum of Scotland

Cost: Free (drop-in)

On Wednesdays and Fridays in February and March, visitors will have the chance to watch a large scale model of the National Museum of Scotland being built in the Grand Gallery, designed by renowned artist in LEGObricks Warren Elsmore. During February half-term, they will have the opportunity to help with an ambitious project to build one of the Museum’s most iconic objects, while activities will include a special Builders’ Yard where visitors can get hands-on with LEGO bricks and put their creations on display. The programme of events will be supported by a small display of Warren’s creations; model buildings, vehicles and other objects made with LEGO bricks.

Build it! is part of the Festival of Architecture 2016, which will celebrate Scotland’s fantastic built environment as a key event in the 2016 Year of Innovation, Architecture and Design.

National Museum of Rural Life

Wester Kittochside, Philipshill Road, East Kilbride G76 9HR

Christmas Fair and Foal Show

Date: Sun 6 Dec 2015

Time: 10:00-17:00

Venue: National Museum of Rural Life

Cost: Includes museum admission: Adult £8/£7, Child £4.50 (under 5 free). Family (2 adults, 2 children) £23, National Museums Scotland Members free. Book tickets online or call 0300 123 6789

Suitable for: Everyone

Celebrate Christmas down on the farm with festive donkeys and Shetland foals. Meet Father Christmas, enjoy a pantomime and pick up some gift ideas at the Christmas Craft Fair, then step back in time and experience traditional Yuletide activities in the farmhouse, with pomander making and Victorian parlour games.

Christmas Wreath Workshop

Date: Sun 13 Dec 2015

Time: 14:00-16:00 (limited places)

Venue: National Museum of Rural Life

Cost: Adult £12, Child £4 (includes material and tuition costs). Booking essential. To book call 0300 123 6789

Suitable for: Age 5+, all children must be accompanied by an adult

Learn the craft of wreath-making at the National Museum of Rural Life and add a touch of creativity to your winter celebrations.

Notes to Editors

1. National Museums Scotland is one of the leading museum groups in Europe and looks after collections of national and international importance. The organisation provides loans, partnerships, research and training in Scotland and internationally. Our four museums are the National Museum of Scotland, the National Museum of Flight, the National Museum of Rural Life and the National War Museum. The National Museums Collection Centre in Edinburgh houses conservation and research facilities as well as collections not currently on display.

2. The National Museum of Scotland family events programme is supported by players of People’s Postcode Lottery.

3. About People’s Postcode Lottery:

  •  People’s Postcode Lottery is a charity lottery. Players play with their postcodes to win cash prizes while raising money for charities and good causes across Great Britain and globally
  •  People’s Postcode Lottery is an External Lottery Manager and manages multiple society lotteries promoted by different causes supporting a range of charities. For details on which society lottery is running each week, visit www.postcodelottery.co.uk/society
  •  Postcode Lottery Limited is regulated by the Gambling Commission under certificate nr 000-000829-N-102511-010 and 000-000829-R-102513-009. Registered office: Titchfield House, 69/85 Tabernacle Street, London, EC2A 4RR
  •  People’s Postcode Lottery players support the following Trusts – Postcode African Trust, Postcode Animal Trust, Postcode Care Trust, Postcode Children Trust, Postcode Community Trust, Postcode Culture Trust, Postcode Dream Trust, Postcode Earth Trust, Postcode Global Trust, Postcode Green Trust, Postcode Heroes Trust, Postcode Local Trust, Postcode Planet Trust, Postcode Support Trust, People’s Postcode Trust and Postcode Sport Trust. These Trusts are funded entirely by players and support a variety of good causes. For further information on each charity, visit: www.postcodelottery.co.uk/charities
  •  55p from every £2 ticket goes to good causes and players have raised £91Million for good causes across the country
  •  There are five draws a month with prizes every day and each ticket costs £2 – paid monthly in advance by direct debit. For further prize information, visit: www.postcodelottery.co.uk/prizes
  •  Maximum amount a single ticket can win is 10% of the draw revenue to a maximum of £400,000
  •  Players can sign up by Direct Debit, credit card or PayPal online at www.postcodelottery.co.uk, or by calling 0808 10-9-8-7-6-5.

4. Burns Unbound at the National Museum of Scotland is part of the Scotland’s Winter Festivals programme of events which is managed by EventScotland, part of Visit Scotland, on behalf of Scottish Government.

5. About Burn’s Night:

  •  Burns, our national bard, is one of Scotland’s favourite icons encapsulating the very essence that makes Scots Scottish – creative, proud and confident.
  •  Robert Burns, or ‘Rabbie’ as he is affectionately known, was born in Alloway, South Ayrshire, in 1732. He began writing poetry and songs at an early age and became famous across Scotland for his writings.
  •  After his death at the age of just 37, Rabbie’s works became internationally renowned and to this day, people from all corners of the world sing ‘Auld Lang Syne’ to bring in the New Year.
  •  Every year on Burns’ birthday, 25 January, Scots and Scots at heart from across the globe celebrate his life in a variety of traditional ways, including addressing the haggis, toasting the lassies and a reciting of the Selkirk Grace.
  •  More information about how to celebrate Burns’ Day and the life of the Bard himself can be found at www.scotland.org/burns   

 6. About Scotland’s Winter Festivals:

  •  Scotland’s Winter Festivals is a programme of events that begins with St Andrew’s Day on 30 November, runs throughout Hogmanay and culminates with Burns Night on 25 January.

 7. About Hogmanay:

  •  Scotland is world-renowned as the home of Hogmanay, celebrated on 31 December.  Fire festivals, torchlight processions, street parties, live music and fireworks, Scotland really is the best place in the world to see in the New Year.
  •  Scotland boasts a wide variety of Hogmanay celebrations, from large scale events such as Edinburgh’s Hogmanay, which attracts over 130,000 visitors each year of which 65% are from outwith Scotland, and Stirling’s Hogmanay, to smaller, regional gatherings.
  •  Scotland is renowned for its traditions associated with Hogmanay and homes, pubs, clubs and village halls across the country host their own celebrations embracing tradition – first footers bringing coal, toasting with a dram at midnight, wishing good luck to the home-owner for the year ahead.
  •  There is a wealth of information about Scotland’s Hogmanay celebrations on www.scotland.org/hogmanay

8. About The Year of Innovation, Architecture and Design:

  •  2016 will shine a spotlight on Scotland’s achievements in innovation, architecture and design through a wide-ranging, variety of new and existing activity beginning on 1 January 2016 and ending on 31 December 2016.
  •  The Year of Innovation, Architecture and Design is a Scottish Government initiative being led by VisitScotland, and supported by a variety of partners including Scottish Government, Creative Scotland, Architecture + Design Scotland, Scottish Tourism Alliance, Scottish Enterprise, The National Trust for Scotland, Historic Scotland, Highlands and Islands Enterprise and The Royal Incorporation of Architects in Scotland (RIAS).
  •  The Year of Innovation, Architecture and Design events fund is managed by EventScotland, part of VisitScotland’s Events Directorate.
  •  Discover more about The Year of Innovation, Architecture and Design at www.visitscotland.com/IAD2016
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