The Great Highland Bagpipe (Scottish Gaelic:a’ phìob mhòr;) is a type of bagpipe native to Scotland. It has achieved widespread recognition through its usage in the British military and in pipe bands throughout the world. The bagpipe is first attested in Scotland around 1400 AD, having previously appeared in European artwork in Spain in the 13th century. The earliest references to bagpipes in Scotland are in a military context, and it is in that context that the Great Highland Bagpipe became established in the British military and achieved the widespread prominence it enjoys today. The Great Highland Bagpipe is also used for a solo virtuosic style called piobaireachd.
if you are interested in Competing please fill out the Pipes and Drums Competition Form. Watch the Gallus Gael video.
The term Highland Dancing is used to-day to refer to a style of Athletic solo dancing which evolved into its current form during the nineteenth and twentieth centuries in the context of competitions at public events (namely, Highland games), where it is typically performed to the accompaniment of bagpipe music. The term is somewhat misleading, however, in that it is only one form of dancing to have been done in the Scottish Highlands and in addition it has been subject to many influences from outside the Highlands. For example, it has been heavily influenced by the urban aesthetics of the patrons and judges of dance competitions since the nineteenth century. Highland dance should not be con-fused with Scottish country dance if you are interested in Competing please fill out the Dance Competition Form.
THE STONE PUTT: Two styles: The “Open Stone” (where competitors are allowed to move their feet), and the “Braemar Stone” where the competitor must throw from a standing position.
THE WEIGHTS for DISTANCE: The weight (either 28 lb. or 56 lb.) is held in one hand as the athlete spins around. The weight will build tremendous energy leading up to its release.
THE HAMMERS: The hammer (either 16 lb. or 22 lb.) is a lead ball attached to a handle. Starting out slow building speed as he goes, the competitor swings the hammer around his head releasing it “blind” over the shoulder. Watch for some unique “footwear” in this event.
THE CABER TOSS: There is nothing more awe inspiring than to watch a man pick up a twenty foot log, settle it into his hands, then run and flip it end for end. Cabers all vary in size, generally from 17 to 21 ft in length and weighing from 100-l8Olbs.
SHEAF TOSS: The athlete must “pitch” a 16 lb - 20 lb stuffed burlap bag up and over a horizontal bar using a pitchfork. World-class athletes will reach heights of 32- 34 feet.
THE WEIGHT for HEIGHT: the 56 lb weight is swung with one hand between legs and then thrown up and over a bar landing just behind the athlete.
For more info about the Competitors, check out their bios and if you're interested you can take part in the Highland Games Heavy Events Workshop on Friday Evening.