Yesterday, I went to the New Hampshire Highland Games with my husband, our son, and his girlfriend.
Originating in Scotland and based on centuries old athletic events, the Highland Games are a gathering of Scottish clans and people to celebrate their Celtic heritage and enjoy food, dancing, drinking, shopping and athletic competitions. Highland Games have been held in Scotland for hundreds of years, and such events can now be found in many other countries, such as Canada, the US, Switzerland, and New Zealand.
Here in New Hampshire, we have been celebrating The Highland Games for 40 years at Loon Ski resort in Lincoln. Nestled in the White Mountains, Lincoln offers a spectacular backdrop for these festivities!
We arrived in time for the "Calling of the Clans," where representatives of each major clan answer to the roll call, and display their tartan. We cheered heartily when they called for our clan, Gunn!
We then explored the variety of vendors, selling all manner of Scottish and Celtic style goods, from tartan kilts, ties, and flags, to shortbread and silver brooches. For lunch, we feasted on fish and chips, meat pies and pasties, washing it down with spicy ginger beer.
We thoroughly enjoyed watching the heavy athletics, as men competed in the caber toss, weight over the bar, and sheaf toss. The highlight of the athletic events was Hafþór Júlíus Björnsson, who plays The Mountain on Game of Thrones. He competed in the weight over bar event and set a new world record!
For a wonderful day full of Scottish culture and events, attend a Highland Games near you!