Named after Nana, the big dog who looks after the children in Peter Pan, Big DoG is an exciting family festival for Dumfries. Take a lead from some of the nation's best children's writers who are hosting a long weekend of barking fun and ruff magic. It's the event where everybody has a tale.

 

Join us for the second Big DoG Children's Book Festival, a weekend packed with stories, illustration and writing. There'll be theatre, singing, making, and even a big party to draw the weekend to a close. Feel at home, have fun and be inspired.

 

You can download the full programme here from Monday 19 February.

 

Children must always be accompanied by an adult. One accompanying adult attends free but must also have a ticket - please select 'accompanying adult' ticket at checkout. Additional adults pay full price.

 

Big DoG family tickets are available for £15 a day. A day ticket permits entry for up to five family members, including a maxiumum of two adults. To guarantee availability for specific events, day ticket holders must also book places for their chosen events.

 

Tickets can be booked online here. You can also buy through the box office at Number 11 North Main Street, Wigtown, DG8 9HN or by telephone on 01988403222.

 

 

Friday 23 March

5.30pm
The Wonderful World of Lapin
Le Petit Monde
£4 | Family

Tania has come from Paris for The World’s Tastiest Carrot competition. In her leather trunk, she carries her very own garden filled with animal friends. They all want a taste of her prize carrot!  Narrated in English with a smattering of French from the puppets, the show is a fun and heart-warming piece of theatre with a big surprise ending. Accessible to all non-French speakers. Book here.
Theatre Royal, 66-68 Shakespeare St

Part of Puppet Animation Festival 2018

Supported by DG Arts Live

 

7pm

The Big DoG Lecture

Dr Jeremy Law, University of Glasgow

£4 | Adults

Reading is a recent human invention which needs instruction over a period of several years. We are not born ‘pre-wired’ to read.However, as your eyes fall upon these words,meaning is extracted within the first 200 milliseconds making it nearly impossible not to read. But, for some children, in the absence of any explanation, this task is nearly insurmountable due to the developmental condition dyslexia. Dr Law discusses how most children can master reading and why some, regardless of effort and ability, struggle. Book here.
Theatre Royal, 66-68 Shakespeare St

 

 

Saturday 24 March

 

Book a family day ticket for Saturday 24 March here.

 

10am-4pm

Mossyard Farm Pottery

£4-£15 | All ages

Paint your own ceramic figurine with Amy McConchie. Lots of fun ceramic designs to choose from and take home. No pre-booking available.

 

10am

Fairy Tales

Vivian French

£4 | Ages 7+

Renowned children’s author Vivian French has written more than 200 books. Join her for tales of witches, trolls, and dragons and start a tale of your own. Book here.
Theatre Royal, 66-68 Shakespeare St

 

10am

The Red Dread

Tom Morgan-Jones

£4 | Ages 3+

The Red Dread is on the loose and Shrew and the other animals are afraid. Tales of stolen nuts and missing rabbits are everywhere. As panic grows, logic and team spirit evaporate and soon it's every creature for itself.  Book here.
Theatre Royal, 66-68 Shakespeare St

 

10.30am-12 noon

Wee MacAsh and the Pirates

Amanda Sunderland

Free | Ages 5-7

Join Amanda and meet the real Wee McAsh for an interactive story and craft session. Book here or just drop in.
Ewart Library, Catherine St. Tel 01387 253820

 

11am-11.30am

Bookbug Session

Free – drop in | Ages 0-4

Fun session including nursery rhymes, singing, action and stories to enjoy with your child. Book here or just drop in.
Georgetown Library, Gillbrae Rd. Tel 01387 256059

 

11.30am

One Button Benny

Alan Windram

£4 | Ages 3+

Benny is a special robot. A single red button sits in the middle of his stomach. Benny has never known what the words “Only Press In An Emergency” mean until one day he is forced to find out. Book here.
Theatre Royal, 66-68 Shakespeare St

Sponsored by The People's Project

 

11.30am

Max and the Millions

Ross Montgomery

£4 | Ages 8+

Max is lonely at his school - until he discovers a microscopic fantasy kingdom on his bedroom floor, filled with living people no bigger than ants! The world is inhabited by people riding fleas and soldiers wielding toothbrush bristles as swords. But how can Max stop them from fighting? Book here.
Theatre Royal, 66-68 Shakespeare St

 

1pm

The Nowhere Emporium

Ross MacKenzie

£4 | Ages 8+

Scottish Children’s Book Award-winner Ross MacKenzie unleashes a riot of imagination in this gripping fantasy adventure. When the mysterious Nowhere Emporium arrives in Glasgow, orphan Daniel is drawn into its magical world. Book here.
Theatre Royal, 66-68 Shakespeare St

 

1pm

Words and Pictures

Vivian French & Ross Collins

£4 | Family

Join author and illustrator duo Vivian French and Ross Collins to learn about writing and illustrating children’s books with two titans of the industry.  Paper, pencils and clipboards provided – bring your imagination. Book here.
Theatre Royal, 66-68 Shakespeare St

 

1pm

Nip Nebs Toon Trail

Susi Briggs & Ruthie Redden

Free but ticketed | Family

An interactive story trail with Nip Nebs himself. Search for pixies an strinkle icy draps on speeder webs! Nip Nebs is a new Scots language picture book for children.  A melodic imagining of an ancient Scottish sprite also known as Jack Frost. Tickets limited - please ensure to select gerenal tickets for children and adult tickets for grown-ups. Book here.
Meet Waterstones, 79-83 High St

 

2.30pm

Top Secret Grandad and Me

David MacPhail

£4 | Ages 8+

Twelve-year-old detective Jay Patel has a new top-secret sidekick - his ghost grandad! After a dead body disappears from the school library, Jay and his Grandad have to find out where it went. What do diamonds, blackmail and dodgy launderettes have to do with anything? David Walliams meets Agatha Christie in the first book of a new laugh-out-loud mystery series. Book here.
Theatre Royal, 66-68 Shakespeare St

 

2.30pm

Space Tortoise

Ross Montgomery

£4 | Ages 3+

A lonely tortoise longs to reach the stars and find other animals to play with. Using things he finds in the bin, he makes a spacesuit and sets off to find the rocket at the other end of the park - but is it really a space ship? Book here.
Theatre Royal, 66-68 Shakespeare St

 

4pm

This Zoo Is Not For You

Ross Collins

£4 | Ages 5+

When platypus visits the zoo, the other animals treat him unkindly. Learn about accepting others for who they are, and how forgiveness and friendship win the day. Book here.
Theatre Royal, 66-68 Shakespeare St

 

8.15pm-10pm

Earth Hour

Free | All ages

During Earth Hour millions of people turn off their lights to show they care about the planet’s future. Embracing the dark, we will be stargazing and moon watching with freelance ranger, Elizabeth Tindal, followed by hot drinks, fun star trails and making activities inside the museum. Wrap up for all weathers. If it is raining there will be alternative indoor activities. Book here or just drop in.
The Museum, The Observatory, Rotchell Rd

 

 

Sunday 25 March

 

Book a family day ticket for Sunday 25 March here.

 

10am-4pm

Mossyard Farm Pottery

£4-£15 | All ages

Paint your own ceramic figurine with Amy McConchie. Lots of fun ceramic designs to choose from and take home. No pre-booking available.

 

9.20am

Parkrun

Free | Families

Dress as your favourite literary character and join us for the weekly 2km walk, jog or run around Dock Park. Wear sensible footwear. All abilities welcome. No pre booking available, just turn up.
Meet at The Bandstand, Dock Park

 

10am

Isla and Pickle

Kate McLelland

£4 | Ages 2+

Isla loves Pickle, the miniature Shetland pony who lives in her neighbour’s field. The pair have lots of fun together, but sometimes the mischievous twosome get into a spot of trouble. When Dad asks Isla if she’d like a pet, can she convince him that Pickle should come and live with them? Book here.
Theatre Royal, 66-68 Shakespeare St

Sponsored by Barbours

 

11.30am

All the Way Home

Debi Gliori

£4 | Ages under 5

Daddy Penguin looks after the egg while Mummy Penguin finds a fish. But an enormous gust of wind sweeps Daddy and egg into the Arctic. In this heart-warming tale, brave Daddy Penguin persists through the cold to get his Little One home. Book here.
Theatre Royal, 66-68 Shakespeare St

Sponsored by University of Glasgow's School of Interdisciplinary Studies

 

11.30am

Captain Firebeard’s School for Pirates

Chae Strathie

Free but ticketed | Ages 6+

Ahoy me hearties! Hop aboard the fiercest, baddest school on the Seven Seas and join Tommy and his friends for a swashbuckling adventure. Who is stealing sweets from Liquorice Len’s tuck shop? Can the class reach the Crow’s Nest? And will Captain Firebeard make them all walk the plank? Book here.
Theatre Royal, 66-68 Shakespeare St

 

1pm

Multi-sensory Story Adventures

Marie Louise Cochrane & Ailie Finlay

£4 | Family

Join storytellers Marie Louise Cochrane and Ailie Finlay for some multi-sensory adventures. Lots of intriguing tactile props and interesting smells! Stories, songs & joining-in for everyone, but particularly suitable for children with additional needs and their friends and families. Tickets limited. Book here.
Theatre Royal, 66-68 Shakespeare St

 

1pm

Home Sweet Garden Puppet Show

Home Sweet Garden - Puppet Animation Festival 2018

£4 per person | Ages 4-7

Home Sweet Garden tells the story of a family and their front garden through the use of puppetry, music and audience interaction. Inspired by the decline of front gardens in the UK and its impact on the environment, the story illustrates what happens when one day a family's garden just disappears! With an original music score and beautiful set, this show will have the audience running for their gardening kits! Lasts 40 minutes. Book here.

Robert Burns Centre Film Theatre, Mill Road, Dumfries

 

2.30pm

Dear Dinosaur: T Rex on Tour

Chae Strathie

Free but ticketed | Ages 3+

When Max visits his friend, the mighty T Rex at the museum, he’s disappointed to learn that T Rex isn’t there. Instead, he’s halfway around the globe on a world tour. Max writes his missing friend a letter and his faithful friend writes back. Dinosaur fans will love this interactive picture book with fold-out letters and cards. Book here.
Dumfries Museum, The Observatory, Rotchell Rd

 

2.30pm

The Beginner's Guide to Curses

Lari Don

Free but ticketed | Ages 7+

Molly has been cursed by an angry witch to turn into a hare whenever she hears a dog bark. On her quest to lift the curse, she meets a squabbling group of magical beings and fabled beasts, all trying to lift their own curses. Join Lari to enter a world of magic, adventure and friendship, and hope that Big DoG stays quiet, for Molly’s sake! Book here.
Theatre Royal, 66-68 Shakespeare St

 

4pm

PARTY: Bring a Tiger to Tea

SOLD OUT - JOIN THE WAITING LIST HERE

£4 | Family

First published more than 50 years ago, Judith Kerr’s The Tiger Who Came to Tea has charmed and intrigued generations of children. Join us for our very own tea party as we reimagine Sophie’s afternoon tea with her wild visitor. Come dressed as Sophie of the tiger. Book here.
Theatre Royal, 66-68 Shakespeare St

 

Grateful thanks to all our sponsors and funders for their support.

 

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