Sunday, August 26, 2007

Scottish Fest

This is a picture of one of the many pipe and drum bands I saw yesterday at the Kalamazoo Scottish Festival.

The festival was held at the Kalamazoo County Fairgrounds, so there was lots of room but, unfortunately, the rain kept many people away, including some of the vendors.

Speaking of vendors, we really liked the t-shirts by Got-Kilt? (Follow the link to pictures of the t-shirts on his web site; there you will also find a link his blog with a Celtic joke every Monday.)

After a rainy start, the day turned out to be sunny and breezy -- perfect weather for all the activities, and there were quite a few:
Event Attractions For 2007

* Ceilidh
We are host a traditional ceilidh again this year at the Kalamazoo Fairgrounds. Friday night, please bring a dish to pass. Join us for an enjoyable evening of storytelling, singing, piping, and dancing.

* Pipe Bands
Enjoy on-field performances by area bands and two massed band demonstrations. Talk with band representatives about piping and drumming and, maybe, give it a try!

* Clans
Visit the clan tents to trace your roots, meet “family,” and join in the parade of tartans!

* Dancing
See demonstrations of highland dancing given by the award-winning Kathleen McMahon Dancers. Watch or join in with the Kalamazoo Royal Scottish Country Dancers.

* Heavy Events
Cheer the regional amateur athletes competing in such highland games events as the stone put, hammer throw and caber toss. You could test your skill in the renowned haggis throw!

* Children’s Games
Kids of all ages may participate in the children’s parade and games.

* Artisans
Watch artisans demonstrate ancient crafts. Marvel at spinners, weavers, and a blacksmith.

* Re-enactors
Walk through the encampment of Grant’s Company of the 42nd Royal Highland Regiment. Visit the History Tent and join in the activities with Elliot MacFarlane.

* Vendors
Shop for Scottish and American food, clothing, jewelry, books, music and more.

* Animal Exhibitions
See rare Highland cattle and watch border collies in herding demonstrations. Visit Clydesdale horses, Jacobs Sheep and see the greyhounds.
I didn't see the Clydesdales or greyhounds, but enjoyed the herding demos and visiting with the Border Collies and the longhorned Highland cow and her calf.

Lots of people bought their dogs, so I got meet and pet lots of beautiful dogs. Here are a few:

A cute Dachshund in a kilt.

Just a few of the 16 Border Collie puppies.

Connery stopped by our booth to visit and enjoy the shade.

The people who didn't attend due to the threat of bad weather missed a good festival and lots of fun. Hopefully this year's Irish Fest will have equally lovely weather (unlike last year's monsoon).

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