On to another celebrated and excellent weekend to join in the celebration of the 75th Fergus Scottish Festival and Highland Games in Fergus Ontario.
The weather both days was perfect and this, together with pent up demand after two years without Games, brought out crowds in record numbers. The excitement and sheer joy of renewing acquaintances and participating once again in important traditions was everywhere. It was once again a great weekend to be part of the Scottish diaspora.
We supported and staffed our Chapter tent with a number of volunteers. Good thing too as the Avenue of Clans was a two-day mass of people. Fergus is the home games for many Clan associations and the turnout is significant with the largest number of Clans represented in Canada in one place at the same time. Our tent was very busy with seekers and members alike and we signed up at least a dozen new Gregors. This was most welcome and a good number of new members joined us in the Clan Parade at noon.
There are several features of the Fergus Festival that are worth noting. The Friday night concert is first class. It is a truly unique and attracts world class Celtic entertainment. This year the Red Hot Pipers rocked the crowd. Second is the numbers of related Celtic events that happen all over town such as a downtown parade, lighting ceremony and Kirkin service. Similar to Maxville, the Town of Fergus is fully engaged in all aspects of support for the festival and attendees and does an incredible job of living up to their motto, Scotland without the air fare!
This too is one of the premier Games in North America with upwards of fifty thousand attendees over the weekend. If you have never attended this festival it is also a must to put on your list of important things to do to celebrate your Scottishness.
Be sure to Include Fergus in your plans for next summer. You will not be disappointed!
Wayne MacGregor Parker