Be sure to check out the videos at the end of this post to actually see these fireballs in motion!
In Scotland New Year’s Eve is known as Hogmanay, and various Scottish villages celebrate it in different ways. In Stonehaven, a small village in the northeastern part of Scotland, the new year is welcomed in through the Stonehaven Fireball Festival – an annual tradition in which homemade balls of flammable materials are lit and swung around one’s head and body while parading down the streets. Since this event takes place at night, it makes quite a spectacular vision, with the flaming orbs circling around. Indeed, thousands of people flock to Stonehaven to watch this display.
I’m not sure of the exact history of this festival, but it does appear the custom goes back over one hundred years.
For more information about the Stonehaven Fireball Festival, check out the website at
Below are some videos of various length showing the Stonehaven Fireball Festival, so you can get an idea of this event. Notice that some of the participants are dressed in traditional Scottish kilts!