It’s that time of year again. This Friday, Loon Mountain will partner up with NH Scot and fire up the bagpipes (can you fire up bagpipes?) for the 37th Annual New Hampshire Highland Games & Festival. We’re looking forward to three days of massed bands, whiskey tasting, and enough tartan to keep Highlander Duncan MacLeod in kilts for eternity.
WHEN – Friday, Sept. 21 to Sunday, Sept. 23.
WHERE- Loon Mountain Resort, main base area.
WHO – More than 60 Scottish clans will be here, plus traditional dancers pipe bands, and athletes from across the country and the world.
COST – Tickets at the gate are $20 on Friday, $30 on Saturday, and $20 on Sunday. Since this theme of this year’s festival is the “Year of the Family,” kids under 15 get in free every day if they’re accompanied by an adult. You can also purchase tickets online.
- Scottish Heavy Athletics and Highland Strength Competitions – Watch some of the strongest athletes on the planet compete for top honors in the caber toss, sheaf toss, hammer throw, and more. It’s kind of like the World’s Strongest Man competition, but 1,000 years older. Many of these tests of strengths, devised by ancient Highland chieftans, evolved into modern track and field sports like the shot put and hammer throw. Watching these athletes from Scotland, Iceland, Europe and Canada is a highlight of the games.
- Clan Village – A total of 68 Highland clans will be at Loon this year to celebrate their Scottish heritage. Browse clan tents and chat with clan members dressed in traditional attire, and connect with your Scottish roots by researching your own highland genealogy.
- Music & Dancing – This is what the Highland Games are all about. Watch dozens of pipe bands compete against each other, take in a Highland dance competition, or take part in a harp workshop. You’ll also be able to see performances by world-class musicians from Scotland and beyond. This year’s lineup includes performances by: Albannach; Bruce and Walker; Celtica; John Carmichael; Fellswater; Hadrian’s Wall; Alasdair Fraser; Roy Johnstone; Searson; Steve Sharratt; The Brigadoons; Charlie Zahm.
- Scottish Goods – Peruse a Celtic market, where you’ll be able to buy everything from kilts to shortbread. Vendors from as far away as Kentucky and Florida will be on hand to help you claim your own wee piece of Scotland.