9,000 spectators flocked to the 149th Aboyne Highland Games this summer, held, as is traditional, on the first Saturday in August. The games take place in the village of Aboyne, near the seat of our chief – and chieftain of the games – the Marquis of Huntly at Aboyne Castle. This year also marked the 100th anniversary of the death of Donald Dinnie, a renowned local athlete who became internationally known for his feats of strength. To mark the occasion, a television crew were on hand to record the games and a ‘lift and hold’ competition, in which competitors attempted to lift the ‘Dinnie Stanes’ – the enormous stones said to have been carried singlehandedly by Dinnie over the nearby Potarch bridge.
Visitors were welcomed at the House of Gordon tent, including students from Robert Gordon University interested in the connection between the wealthy merchant’s connections to the family, and winner of the Stones competition, James Gardner, a septsman of the clan.