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Rainbow photo opportunities at Castlegate and Shiprow

Aberdeen’s Big Letters will turn all the colours of the rainbow from today (Friday, 26 May) as the city celebrates Grampian Pride.

The 98,000 lightbulbs in the giant letters have been programmed to display rainbow colours in support of the region’s LGBTQ+ community.

The letters, which stand almost 2m tall, will deliver a glorious, technicolour rainbow display over the weekend, as well as featuring in a Find the Rainbow hunt around local landmarks.

Adrian Watson, Chief Executive of Aberdeen Inspired, said: “We’re anticipating a busy weekend in the Silver City. The sun is set to shine, and the streets are bound to be full of colour for this Saturday’s Grampian Pride parade and event in Duthie Park. We’re delighted to be able to use the city’s big letters to show our support for the LGBTQ+ community.

“I’m looking forward to seeing the rainbow version of the Big Letters popping up on social media as the region turns out to celebrate Grampian Pride.”

Visitors to the city are also being encouraged to visit Shiprow to see the vibrant, colourful umbrellas which were recently installed in support of the ADHD Foundation.

Adrian added: “Multi-coloured umbrellas can be seen suspended above Shiprow with an aim of raising awareness of, and celebrating, the ‘umbrella’ term of neurodiversity which includes ADHD, autism, dyslexia, dysgraphia and dyspraxia. The big letters and the umbrellas will both deliver a stunning backdrop for photos.”

Manufactured here in Aberdeen, the letters have in-built interactive technology to allow them to feature digital displays and change colour to celebrate holidays and events.

Allan Smith, director of Luxous Group, which was appointed to produce the letters, said: “Luxous Group is delighted to have the chance to create yet another light show for the letters, really showing how versatile the concept can be and again showing how each display can be tailored for any valued community of interest that wishes to use them.”

Grampian Pride has grown bigger each year, with an official after-party being added for the first time, offering a disco event with live performances from Gareth Gates, Alex Party, Kelly Wilde, Janice Robinson and The Cheeky Girls and hosted by Greigsy from Northsound 1.

CHEERZ bar and club is an official sponsor of Grampian Pride and will be hosting the licensed bar at Duthie Park in addition to a closing party on Sunday, with extended licensing hours.

George Mackenzie, operations manager at CHEERZ, said the light show would add to the events planned for the city this weekend.

“It's great that Luxous and Aberdeen Inspired have come up with this unique pride themed light show in advance of a busy weekend in the city centre for Grampian Pride and have agreed to participate in the ‘Find The Rainbow’ hunt, where thousands of Pride goers will be visiting local landmarks and businesses to collect codes and win prizes,” he said.

“This year’s pride event will feature a parade down Union Street this Saturday, followed by a family friendly event in Duthie Park with Basshunter headlining and an adult only After-Party.”

The letters project was funded and led by Aberdeen Inspired, which manages the letters, VisitAberdeenshire and Aberdeen and Grampian Chamber of Commerce. The idea was drawn up by city business leaders to help encourage visitors to the city centre, as well as positively promoting the city on social media platforms such as Instagram.