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Scenes from the Fringe: Edinburgh welcomes arts festival season

Dan Kitwood / Getty Images

A girl with a papier-mache creature on her head is helped down a street during the Edinburgh Fringe on Aug. 6, in Edinburgh, Scotland. The Edinburgh Festival Fringe is the largest arts festivals in the world, it was established as an alternative to the International Festival also held in August, and celebrates it's 66th anniversary this year.

Dan Kitwood / Getty Images

Street entertainers perform on the Royal Mile to promote their shows during in the Edinburgh Fringe Festival on Aug. 6, in Edinburgh, Scotland.

Reuters -- The serious, anarchic and comedy-strewn Edinburgh Fringe has kicked into high gear this past weekend with a record number of shows and performers crowding the Scottish capital and giving a welcome boost to the economy as the city's population doubles over the month-long festival season.

The official Fringe program lists a record 2,695 shows, plus more on the "Free Fringe", with an influx of nearly 23,000 performers this year. Festivals in Scotland are worth some 250 million pounds ($389.99 million) to the Scottish economy annually, with the Fringe itself bringing in 140 million pounds to Edinburgh alone.

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See more photos from Scotland on PhotoBlog.

Dan Kitwood / Getty Images

Street entertainers perform on the Royal Mile to promote their shows during in the Edinburgh Fringe Festival on Aug. 6, in Edinburgh, Scotland.

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