My Paisley with Valerija Tkacenko

Friday 28th September, 2018

Hi, my name is Valerija and I have joined Renfrewshire Council’s events team this Halloween as a creative intern.

I will be working alongside the events team and young people from across Renfrewshire to help shape and deliver this year’s Halloween spooktacular!

My journey began in Latvia and took me all the way to Scotland when I was 14 years old. For over 10 years now I have lived, studied, and worked in Renfrewshire. It has become a place close to my heart and a place I can now call my second home.

What makes Paisley/Renfrewshire a great place to visit/live/invest/study/work?

Paisley has a lot to offer to residents and town’s visitors; beautiful architecture, talented artists and musicians, creative communities, delicious food and great local events.

As a creative individual myself, I love how diverse in creativity Paisley is. Everywhere you go you will stumble on to some form of talent or artistry, buskers, murals, performances etc. Having a walk around the town you most likely will make new discoveries and findings about the town.

What are you looking forward to about Paisley Halloween Festival 2018?

Halloween is one of the biggest and most anticipated events of the year and I am delighted to be part of it.

One of the things I am looking forward to the most is Working with Young People from across Renfrewshire. I think it is going to be an amazing project of intergenerational effort to deliver a high-end event. I also believe this opportunity will allow young people of Renfrewshire to be more involved with Renfrewshire’s future.

I have already met some of the young voices who will help us form the event at the first Events Youth Panel Meeting. We have managed to take on amazing characters with creative minds, who no doubt will have great input and help deliver an amazing experience to all the event visitors.

I am excited to be working with creative professionals and Renfrewshire youth behind the scenes of the event and see how it all comes together. It will be interesting to see how people of different ages will develop their ideas to shape and deliver Halloween Spectacular.

How have you have been involved in co-designing this year’s Paisley Halloween Festival?

I am joining events team as a Creative Intern for the Halloween Festival. My role as a creative Intern will be focused on and around young people engagement for this year’s Halloween.

I will assist in coordinating and supporting the Events Youth Panel, 20 young people from around Renfrewshire who will help shape Halloween Event together with the events team.

I also will be supporting the youth engagement programme leading up to and through Halloween festival. We have an amazing creative partners who will run number of workshops with young people to help them to develop new skills, learn something new, build friendships and do something fun around Renfrewshire.

Working for Paisley Halloween Festival I will be able to gain valuable insight into the world of events and learn everything from marketing strategies, community engagement and event delivery.

What makes the area special?

Paisley offers range of different attractions to people of all ages and gives you an opportunity to explore Renfrewshire as a whole.

Paisley is town full of history and culture, surrounded by beautiful buildings and friendly people. Here you can discover fascinating stories of Paisley witches and learn everything about famous Paisley Pattern.

If someone was visiting here, where would you recommend they go?

I would highly recommend for everyone to come and visit Paisley. It is easy to tour, and you most definitely will capture some great sights and memories.

While exploring, it is very easy to stumble on some hidden gems. One of my personal favourites is a stunning giant Kingfisher mural at the heart of Paisley Town by Mark Worst and Ross Dinnett.

No matter the season, Paisley always offers a wide range of events and celebrations for everyone. So, when you visit paisley don’t be afraid to come and celebrate one of the local events together with the town’s residents, have fun and experience Paisley in its full glory.

If you are looking for a thrill, excitement and a good time, you must come and take part in this year’s Halloween Festival – it’s going to be an unforgettable experience

When we say, ‘Paisley is…’, how you would finish the sentence?

A town full of discoveries, excitement, fun and adventure.

I regularly visit the Paisley Museum and Art Galleries and Paisley Arts Centre and try to attend as many of the festivals and events in the town as possible... I particularly enjoy Sma’ Shot Day.

Laura Gray

Things to see and do around Paisley