Grab yer kilt, lads and lassies: the 23rd Annual ScotsFestival & International Highland Games are nigh—and this year, from February 13 to 14, they’re celebrating the Scottish heritage of The Queen Mary herself.
From February 13 to 14, 9:00AM to 6:00PM, The Queen Mary will transport festivalgoers back a few centuries to a land far, far away; a land replete with Border Collie sheep-herding, firing demonstrations, performances by the Scots Greys Calvary, Royal Scottish Country Dance Society, Celtic Harp & Wren Iniquity Ensemble and historic re-enactments.
However, lest you think you’re in an episode of that Starz series, Outlander, the thoroughly modern whiskey, beer and aged malt samples will stand as convincing evidence you’re back in the present.
A wee 85 years ago, The Queen Mary’s construction began in the Scottish hamlet of Clydebank. Her Scottish roots served her well throughout her fabled years as a transatlantic vessel, and are a core part of her identity in her current home of Long Beach. This year’s ScotsFest is bent on showcasing The Queen Mary’s Scottish legacy, alongside its usual professional and amateur Scottish athletic traditions.
Other competitions include profesh and amteur games of piping, drumming, massed bands, darts, Highland dancing and Highland athletics. World Champion Scottish Highland Dancer Kaylee Finnigan and other athletes will be gunning for the win in events that include stones, hammer thrown, weights for distans, weight over bar, sheaf and the caber toss.
Alas, there are activities for tiny lads and lassies as well. Little ones are eligible to take part in the “Wee Highland Games,” and can see The Queen Mary’s coronation and knighting ceremonies.
ScotsFestival tickets, on sale now, start at $10 online for children aged four through 11, and are $19 online for guests 12 and over. Other VIP tickets and hotel packages are available. For more information and to purchase tickets, click here.