Open Air in the Square is proof of why Stonehaven is elbowing its way up the pecking order in terms of destinations for Hogmanay.
Jim Kerr said it himself on the mic: “Tonight, Stonehaven is the rock capital of the world” and I believed him.
Simple Minds sounded great all night and certainly looked to be enjoying themselves as they played before and after the bells.
It wasn’t just Simple Minds though, each warm up act played their part in a truly special night in Stonehaven.
I spoke to the guys from Searching for Donkeys before they played their Clutha Bar fundraiser at the weekend and they said they were full of praise for the stage set up, the lights and the smoke machines saying “It was fantastic to play in front of such a big crowd.”
The Dangleberries were a great choice before the Minds.
I had never seen them before and enjoyed what they brought to the table.
They were full of good energy with one of their female members practically bouncing around the stage all night. Whether it was to keep herself warm or entertain - we’ll never know!
I’ve written a few reports on Lathallan School’s pipe band and was in awe of the young pipe major, Alexander Sanger. who wowed the crowd in the minutes before the bells and also enjoyed his rendition of Auld Lang Syne before Simple Minds came back on.
There was plenty of families in the crowd but the one thing that stuck out (apart from the huge line for the bar) was the amount of people who came down to hear what the square had to offer.
Some cheeky non-paying revellers even took down the black netting on the fence which was quickly patched up by volunteers.
The fireworks that were let off after the Fireballs was a nice touch as they lit up the sky behind the stage as Simple Minds played.
If you attended the Fireballs you probably caught the end of Simple Minds as they played their classic hit ‘Don’t you,’ which delighted the square.
The standard has been set, and I’m certainly looking forward to next year.
Just like the rest of you, I can’t wait to see who is
MORE PHOTOS ON PAGES 20 & 21