Meet the people behind the festivals - Vivien Rae
An integral part of Aberdeen Festivals’ work is to strengthen the cultural sector in Aberdeen and Aberdeenshire. This is mainly achieved through our key resource, our people. This month we meet Vivien Rae from the Scottish Traditional Boat Festival.
Tell us a bit about your job:
I started volunteering with the Scottish Traditional Boat Festival (STBF) over six years ago, providing marketing & PR support to promote the event across various online and offline channels, targeting potential visitors in the UK and worldwide.
Now in its 24th year, STBF has grown considerably from the intended one off event to celebrate the centenary of Portsoy’s Old Harbour to become a highlight for visitors and families who travel from afar to join us.
Becoming part of the STBF team really highlighted the high level of work and dedication the volunteers give towards ensuring the event is successful and continues on an annual basis.
Over the years, I have become more involved with the Portsoy Community Enterprise organisation, assisting with marketing & PR efforts for all of its projects, including STBF, The Boatshed, The Salmon Bothy, Portsoy Links Caravan Park and the newly opened Sail Loft Bunkhouse. It has been great to really be part of this flourishing social enterprise.
What do you think makes our region’s cultural offering stand out?
We are very fortunate in the north east to have such a diverse offering, from rugged coastlines and long beaches, to small picturesque villages and towns, as well as the vibrant hustle of Aberdeen city.
I believe throughout all of these areas, the culture of the north east is still very much alive in local people’s daily routines. Whether it’s in the fishermen who leave the small harbours as the sun rises, or the traditional crafts and skills which produce everyday items and gifts, or ongoing production within old but fully functioning whisky distilleries, and not forgetting our own Doric language, there’s a real authenticity to the cultural offering within Aberdeenshire.
The Scottish Traditional Boat Festival aims to celebrate the area’s culture by bringing together and showcasing an array of traditional boats, time honoured crafts and skills, the region’s best food and drink and enriching song and dance.
How has working as part of Aberdeen Festivals developed the festival you represent and your career:
We are delighted to become the newest member of Aberdeen Festivals, just recently joining in April this year, and are excited to be listed amongst some of the region’s best and renowned festivals. STBF attracts visitors from all over the UK and abroad, so we are delighted to further promote the event through Aberdeen Festivals to attract more visitors to the Festival and to the Aberdeenshire area.
For me personally, I’ve benefited from joining the large network of people within the Aberdeenshire travel and tourism industry, as well as learning new trends and ideas at the many conferences and workshops taking place throughout the shire.
How do you spend your weekends:
I like to make the most of the beautiful area we live in, enjoying walks with my dog along our long sandy beaches and through heathery woodlands. There’s always something happening to visit too, from small community gala events to larger festivals and celebrations, it’s a great opportunity for new experiences and making memories with family and friends. I can’t overlook the shopping, theatre and music gigs which Aberdeen offers either!