Hello to all! Three years ago our family of four (incl. two college-aged sons) took an extremely memorable and successful 3-week trip to the UK. We visited London, Cardiff, Oxfordshire, and then, at the very end, tacked on a few days in Edinburgh. We fell in love with both Edinburgh and the Festival! So this coming summer we will be heading back to the Festival. I am trying to decide where else to visit in Scotland and/or northern England. We often try to schedule ourselves around local festivals, fairs and games. Beyond the giant hulabaloo in Edinburgh in August, are there other events we should be aware of? We especially like charming, small town events that are not touristy. (I know our interest in the Festival contradicts that, but I am also a performing arts professor, so hence our love for that...) Are there any Highland games we could try to catch? Book festivals? Country fairs? I appreciate the help!
There are lots sites to help search. Try this one. Check out the Scottish Games Schedule which my be fun. You might also want to check out the Gig Guide for Music. The closer to your travel time, the more gigs are listed. The two favorite that I went to were in September--Tarbert and the Aberfeldy Festival which is now November! It does look like Orkney has some fun in August. Here's a list for Inverness.
I would recommend developing a list of places and then looking around to see what's happening. I've always liked Strathpeffer. They have a wonderful restored Pavilion that usually has events, but right now there is not much there. You could email them and ask what's on or in the works.
This list looks pretty comprehensive.