Nearly 4,000 people flocked to last year’s rain-sodden but massively successful Viewpark Gala - but Saturday’s version is going to be even better.
That’s the promise from the hard-working Gala committee who have pulled out all the stops to make sure the crowds expected in Burnfield Street on Saturday aren’t disappointed.
Shelved for 24 years, the event made a triumphant return in 2012 - despite lashing rain - and scored an instant hit with hundreds of families in a year when many summer galas were almost complete washouts.
This time around, the organisers are taking no chances with the weather, and will have both an event tent and also free use of fitness studio Liber8, whether or not the sun shines.
The day will begin with a grand parade from Viewpark Education Centre to Burnhead Street, via Elmpark, and at noon Gala Queen Abbie Davison (11), a John Paul II Primary pupil, will be crowned by last year’s Queen Lauren McCluskey.
With Abbie will be attendants Megan Connor and Julia Docherty, flower girl Abigail Fox, champion Barry Fee and crown bearer Brian Wells.
The entertainment will range from a football festival, a funfair and inflatables to face painting, “bounce and rhyme” for tots, a soft play area and Kirsty’s Critters - featuring small reptiles and other animals children can get acquainted with up close.
In the event tent there will be a demonstration by dance group SMinc, contenders in the world Hip Hop Championships, and during the Gala there will be plenty of traders’ stalls - and lots of good things to eat.
Also present will be Bothwell First Responders - who will be giving a demonstration of how defibrillators stored locally can be used to potentially save a life if someone suffers heart failure.
They are fully trained to use the equipment in the vital minutes before emergency services arrive.
The police and fire services will also be there to meet local people and talk about their roles in the community.
Gala committee secretary Sharon Swan said: “We have had the bunting up for a week now, and everyone I know can’t wait for the big day - we’re certain it’s going to be even better than last year’s.
“We’re particularly grateful to Scotmid, who have donated £1,500 - their charity contribution from the money raised from selling carrier bags to shoppers.
“If the sun shines that will be fantastic, but last year people were dancing in the rain and not allowing anything to spoil their day - so it is going to be the best family day ever, regardless.”
Meanwhile the committee have thanked everyone who has helped with the organisation so far, and have asked anyone who would still like to volunteer to get in touch - either by simply speaking to a committee member they know, via Facebook, or e-mailng them