1 Wigtown Book Festival
Wigtown, Dumfries and Galloway, from tomorrow
This 10-day literary festival is Scotland's largest outside of Edinburgh. Guests include Joanna Lumley, Mark Lawson, Ian Pattison, Peter Snow, Fred McAuley, Great British Bake Off finalist James Morton, and Pulitzer Prize-winning historian Anne Applebaum. There's plenty for children and young people too, with appearances from Nicholas Allan, Nick Sharratt, Ali Sparkes and Jamie Thomson - plus £20 family-day tickets available. There's also live music, theatre and film, a ceilidh, an event retracing locations used in cult Brit horror The Wicker Man, the 2013 Wigtown Poetry Competition, and the return of Wigtown's Got Talent.
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2 Scottish Home Show 2013
AECC, Friday to Sunday
Cheery Scots interiors guru Carole Smillie and gruff cockney DIY sage Tommy Walsh are the yin-yang televisual tag-team at the heart of this three-day lifestyle show, which returns to Aberdeen this weekend for a second year. Showcasing the latest in homes, interiors, gardens and gadgets, the event is expected to attract 10,000 visitors. Also promised are whisky tasting, cooking lessons, and baking demonstrations. On the door prices are £10 (£7.50 concession, children free).
3 An Evening With Ray Mears
Various venues, Friday to Tuesday
The survival expert, author and TV action man is sharing tales on this nationwide lecture tour, which comes to Glasgow tomorrow before stopping off in Dundee, Edinburgh, Aberdeen and Inverness. Mears, who published his autobiography recently, has spent the past 30 years exploring some of the world's most inhospitable environments. Likely to be up for discussion is his previously untold story of how he helped police track fugitive murderer Raoul Moat in July 2010..
4 Dinosaur Zoo
Kings Theatre, Edinburgh, Friday to Sunday
Like Jurassic Park, but not nearly so bitey, this live show from Australian educational theatre group Erth uses ingenious and often super-sized puppetry to give audiences aged three and over a taste of the animal kingdom, prehistoric-style. Taking the form of a family-friendly interactive wildlife lecture, those attending can get up close and personal with a range of dinosaurs, brought to life by a team of 'handlers'. Tickets are £13.50, with special 'danger' seats closest to the action also available for £16.
5 Unesco City of Music Family Day
Glasgow Royal Concert Hall and City Halls, Saturday
Fairy-tale themed performances and activities for children up to 12, featuring musicians from various Scottish orchestras and classical ensembles. On from 10am to 5pm, activities include facepainting, storytelling, arts and crafts, a DJ skills workshop, and two silent discos. Most events are free, but some performances are ticketed - these include Into The Ice Palace, an interactive concert based on The Snow Queen, and a Scottish Chamber Orchestra performance of Prokofiev's children's classic Peter and the Wolf narrated by Cbeebies presenter Chris Jarvis (both £2).
6 Summerlee's September Weekend
Summerlee Museum, Coatbridge, Saturday and Sunday
An early chance to commemorate the start of the First World War ahead of next year's 100th anniversary with re-enactment group Gordon Highlanders 1914-18. Perfect for amateur historians of all ages, the weekend promises a range of activities and displays giving insight into life for Scots regiments in the trenches of the Great War. Group members in kilts and full Highland regalia will be on hand to answer questions and demonstrate equipment in an authentic army camp, while younger visitors can take part in drill instructions and an obstacle course using safe plastic barbed wire. Open from 10am to 5pm on both days, entry is free.
7 Loch Ness Marathon and Festival of Running
Bught Park, Inverness, Saturday and Sunday
Scotland's biggest rural marathon event is also one of the most spectacular, taking in a good stretch of the Loch's southern bank on the way to the finish line in Inverness. Festivities start on Saturday with an afternoon of live music and a carbs-loading pasta party for participants. Sunday has five races - the marathon, individual and team challenge 10K routes, a 5K fun run, plus the Wee Nessie run, a 400m circuit designed for pre-school children. There's also plenty to see and do at the event village in Bught Park. As well as a food and drink fayre and a sports expo, there are fun family activities and live entertainment. Race entry is now closed, but limited places are available for the 5K and Wee Nessie.
8 Giants in the Forest - The Dark Wood
Drum Castle Estate, Aberdeenshire, Saturday and Sunday
This after-dark walk in ancient royal woodland near Aberdeen offers an unusual means of enjoying the natural world. Giants in the Forest involves following a trail deep into the forest where a set of huge masks have been suspended from trees. Woven from branches and moss, then sown with seeds and left since March, the masks are now living sculptures. Visitors can expect to find storytellers and some of the artists responsible along the way. Tickets are £5, with performances every 20 minutes from 7pm to 9pm, accessed by a mini-coach to the site from Drum Castle courtyard five minutes before each stated time. Waterproofs, warm clothes, sturdy footwear and a torch are recommended.
9 Scottish Comedian of the Year
O2 Academy, Glasgow, Sunday
Catch the comedy heroes of tomorrow at this evening of competitive stand-up hosted by Des Clarke. The event brings together 10 finalists from qualifiers held across Scotland over the summer. Chosen by a panel of industry experts and open to all Scottish comedians, the winner receives a cash prize, the coveted Banana Boots Trophy, a show at next year's Edinburgh Fringe, and trip to Australia in February to perform in the Adelaide Fringe. Organisers Ha Ha Comedy have some big names on their books, so expect unannounced guest stars such as Ross Noble, who dropped by last year. Tickets cost £13.50.
10 Baby Loves Disco
Edinburgh Electric Circus, Sunday
A daytime dance music event for parents with babies, toddlers and pre-school children held in a real nightclub, with club DJs and tot-friendly volume levels. Now running monthly in Edinburgh and Glasgow, Baby Loves Disco events let younger dancers throw shapes in a safe environment, with the added thrill of bubble machines, play tents, inflatables, instruments and toys, face painting, and chill-out zones for parents. There are also prizes for the best moves and costumes, while healthy snacks and refreshments are included in the entry price. The theme in Edinburgh this weekend is Heroes and Villains; Glasgow's Mansion House hosts a Pirates and Princesses-themed party on October 6. Tickets are £8, with non-walking babies free.