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More than 800 people attend Dallas Gala's successful return


By Jonathan Clark

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THE return of the Dallas Gala after the coronavirus pandemic was greeted by a crowd in excess of 800 people.

The event, sidelined since 2019, had clearly been missed as people, from Dallas and further afield, flocked to the village's playing field for a fun-filled weekend.

Strathisla Pipe Band led the parade from the Dallas Town Hall to the playing fields. Picture: Nick Gibbons
Strathisla Pipe Band led the parade from the Dallas Town Hall to the playing fields. Picture: Nick Gibbons

Organiser Lorna McGee was delighted with the turnout, which she said far exceeded the committee's expectations.

"We hoped it would be a good day and pushed the event, but even still it was better than we anticipated numbers-wise," she said.

"We had 530 people who paid to get in, easily more than 300 kids and then committee members. It was far above our expectations.

"People came from far and wide, there were loads that we didn't recognise. There was a queue for tea and ice cream all day and we sold out of both."

While the vast majority of the action took place on a packed Sunday, when weather was largely sunny and dry, proceedings got underway on Friday night.

Chloe Dey was crowned Gala Queen, before she signalled the start of the bike race, which attracted 26 riders in treacherous conditions.

Gala Queen Chloe Dey (left) and attendant Anna Park with the Pet Parade winner Digger. Picture: Daniel McLauchlan
Gala Queen Chloe Dey (left) and attendant Anna Park with the Pet Parade winner Digger. Picture: Daniel McLauchlan
Gala Queen Chloe Dey is given a lift to the field in the parade. Picture: Nick Gibbons
Gala Queen Chloe Dey is given a lift to the field in the parade. Picture: Nick Gibbons

On Saturday there was a pram race and it's a knockout competition during the day – with the weather again less than ideal – and a Family Fortunes quiz at night in Dallas Village Hall.

The main event kicked off at 1.30pm on Sunday after a parade led by Strathisla Pipe Band arrived at the playing fields.

"There was something for grown ups, as well as the young ones," Lorna added.

"There were rain showers in the morning but the rest of the day was fabulous."

Joining the pipe band in the parade was the Highland Classic Motorcycle Club, while there was a competition for the best float, which was won by the Lockdown Lardies.

Highland Classic Motorcycle Club took part in the parade. Picture: Nick Gibbons
Highland Classic Motorcycle Club took part in the parade. Picture: Nick Gibbons
The competition for the best float was won by the Lockdown Lardies. Picture: Nick Gibbons
The competition for the best float was won by the Lockdown Lardies. Picture: Nick Gibbons

At the playing fields, the Dallas Cowboys – the village's men – put on an impressive 15-minute skit which involved jumping over a burning skipping rope and off of barrels, while Drakes of Hazard did a display with dog Mist.

Dallas Cowboys putting on a skit. Picture: Nick Gibbons
Dallas Cowboys putting on a skit. Picture: Nick Gibbons
From left: Andy Newcombe, Stuart Ingram, Richard Binnie, Ollie Lake and Daniel McGee of the Dallas Cowboys. Picture: Nick Gibbons
From left: Andy Newcombe, Stuart Ingram, Richard Binnie, Ollie Lake and Daniel McGee of the Dallas Cowboys. Picture: Nick Gibbons
From left: Richard and Stuart Ingram (behind the smoke), Ollie Lake, Steven Dey and Grahame Davidson. Picture: Nick Gibbons
From left: Richard and Stuart Ingram (behind the smoke), Ollie Lake, Steven Dey and Grahame Davidson. Picture: Nick Gibbons
Mark Wylie of Drakes of Hazard with his dog Mist. Picture: Nick Gibbons
Mark Wylie of Drakes of Hazard with his dog Mist. Picture: Nick Gibbons

Elsewhere, there were alpacas to see, a teddy bear hunt, a bouncy castle and a pet parade, which was won by Digger the dog.

The Gala Queen handed out medals and prizes before picking the winning float.

Eyes now turn to next year, with Lorna added: "We are hoping that, after a couple of years away, we can now keep the momentum going and build for next year – after everyone has had a wee rest!"

The children taking part in superheroes vs princesses. Picture: Emma Harrison
The children taking part in superheroes vs princesses. Picture: Emma Harrison

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