Litchfield, CT --
Contact: Janet L. Serra
For Immediate Release
Swirling kilts, stirring bagpipes, and sporting contests to try the hardiest males will fill the fields with color and excitement when the Scottish Festival celebrates its 25th anniversary at the Goshen Fairgrounds in the Litchfield Hills on October 4. The lively event, sponsored by the St. Andrew's Society of Connecticut, offers much loved Scottish traditions that everyone can enjoy, a delightful and different family outing.
The long list of events includes competitions and performances of graceful Highland and Country dancers, contests between kilted bagpipe bands clad in colorful clan plaids, and athletic challenges guaranteed to bring cheers from spectators. According to legend, Highland Games began as a kind of informal athletic test allowing kings and clan chiefs to pick the best men available for their forces. It still takes a mighty man to prevail at heavy hammer tosses and the incredible "tossing of the caber." A caber looks much like a telephone pole, measuring some 16 feet long and weighing as much as 150 pounds.
Among the perennial favorite events is sheepdog herding demonstrations in which clever border collies herd a flock of sheep through and around a far-flung obstacle course. Other diversions include weaving demonstrations, children's games, entertainers from musicians to storytellers, Scottish foods and imports for sale, and the all-in-fun "bonnie knees" contest among the kilted gentlemen. Spectators who want to get into the spirit of things can take lessons in Highland dancing or Gaelic. The 42nd Royal Highland Regiment of Foot will stage an encampment as it might have been in the 1700s.
The games began 25 years ago on the grounds of White Memorial Foundation with a handful of participants and spectators, but soon outgrew its quarters. The Goshen Fairgrounds have been home for some 16 years and several thousand spectators attend each year. The non-profit St. Andrew's Society of Connecticut uses proceeds to support local charities.
The Scottish Festival will take place rain or shine from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Admission is $10, $5.00 for children and seniors, free for children under age six.
For more information about the festival and other fall events and a free copy of UNWIND, a 112-page color guide to lodging, dining and all the attractions in the Litchfield Hills of Northwest Connecticut, write to the Northwest Connecticut Convention and Visitors Bureau, PO Box 968, Litchfield, CT 06759, (860) 567-4506, or check the Internet at www.litchfieldhills.com.