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Stone Mountain Highland Games
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Established in 1973, the Stone Mountain Highland Games and Scottish Festival is one of the oldest international festivals to take place in the Metro Atlanta area. It is very popular in the community and routinely draws participants from all over the United States, Canada, the United Kingdom (including Scotland, Ireland and England), Australia, and other parts of the world.
Established in 1973, the Stone Mountain Highland Games and Scottish Festival is one of the oldest international festivals to take place in the Metro Atlanta area. It is very popular in the community and routinely draws participants from all over the United States, Canada, the United Kingdom (including Scotland, Ireland and England), Australia, and other parts of the world.

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A very Happy Valentine's Day to you from all of us at the Stone Mountain Highland Games
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Please help us in welcoming our 2017 Guest of Honor
Robin Neill Lochnell Malcolm,
19th Laird of Poltalloch and Hereditary Chief of Clan MacCallum/Malcolm
http://www.smhg.org/clans.php

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the Solo Piping and Drumming Registration form for the 2017 Stone Mountain Games is now available on our web site.
http://www.smhg.org/pipe_drum.php
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January 25th is the birthday of Scotland's greatest poet.
Happy Birthday Rabbie Burns
Robert Burns (25 January 1759 – 21 July 1796), also known as Rabbie Burns, the Bard of Ayrshire, Ploughman Poet and various other names and epithets, was a Scottish poet and lyricist. He is widely regarded as the national poet of Scotland and is celebrated worldwide. He is the best known of the poets who have written in the Scots language, although much of his writing is also in English and a light Scots dialect, accessible to an audience beyond Scotland. He also wrote in standard English, and in these writings his political or civil commentary is often at its bluntest.
He is regarded as a pioneer of the Romantic movement, and after his death he became a great source of inspiration to the founders of both liberalism and socialism, and a cultural icon in Scotland and among the Scottish diaspora around the world. Celebration of his life and work became almost a national charismatic cult during the 19th and 20th centuries, and his influence has long been strong on Scottish literature. In 2009 he was chosen as the greatest Scot by the Scottish public in a vote run by Scottish television channel STV.
As well as making original compositions, Burns also collected folk songs from across Scotland, often revising or adapting them. His poem (and song) "Auld Lang Syne" is often sung at Hogmanay (the last day of the year), and "Scots Wha Hae" served for a long time as an unofficial national anthem of the country. Other poems and songs of Burns that remain well known across the world today include "A Red, Red Rose", "A Man's a Man for A' That", "To a Louse", "To a Mouse", "The Battle of Sherramuir", "Tam o' Shanter" and "Ae Fond Kiss".
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qJSjAGVV6Zg
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A very sad day for the Stone Mountain Highland Games family.
Colonel Donald Louis Boney, AUS, Retired, died Friday, January 20.
Don served on the SMHG Board of Directors, Treasurer, and Chair of Clan Activities.
From Norman P. Livermore, SMHG President
Friends and Fellow Games Committee folk.
For more than 44 years our games family has been building, growing stronger as we have grown closer to each other through our common goals. Some 4 years ago I was given the unique opportunity to lead this great family. Seems that every day brought some new challenge to which I have typically looked forward. Today is NOT one of those days as I find the task at hand very difficult.
Some time early this morning our dear friend and family member Don Boney passed away… a victim of Melanoma.
I know that to some, this will come as a surprise as you might not have been aware of Don’s challenges over the past several years. Please know that it was his wishes that this be the case and I acted accordingly. As recently as two weeks ago he and I had discussed this again. His comment was simply that there are many others that have bigger struggles than he. A courageous and passionate man always.
Personally, I am devastated by the news. His passing leaves a big hole in my heart and the soul of our family; One that will take some time to heal. My prayers go out to Jane, John and the rest of the family. I trust you will join me.
As for details, they still in progress as you will not doubt understand. What I know is that a service is tentatively planned for Sunday afternoon at the H.M. PATTERSON & SON-OGLETHORPE HILL CHAPEL. It is also my understanding that he will be interred with fully Military honors at the Georgia National Cemetery in Canton.
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Happy St. Andrew's Day
St. Andrew's Day is the feast day of Saint Andrew. It is celebrated on the 30th of November.
Saint Andrew is the patron saint of Cyprus, Scotland, Greece, Romania, Russia, Ukraine, Bulgaria, the Ecumenical Patriarchate of Constantinople, San Andres Island, Colombia and Saint Andrew, Barbados.
St. Andrew's Day (Scots: Saunt Andra's Day, Scottish Gaelic: Là Naomh Anndrais) is Scotland's official national day. In 2006, the Scottish Parliament designated St Andrew's Day as an official bank holiday.
Traditions and celebrations in Scotland (From Wikipedia)
The celebration of St Andrew as a national festival is thought to originate from the reign of Malcolm III (1034–1093). It was thought that ritual slaughter of animals associated with Samhain was moved to this date, so as to assure enough animals were kept alive for winter. But it is only in more recent times that the 30 November has been given national holiday status.
Bank Holiday
In 2006, the Scottish Parliament passed the St. Andrew's Day Bank Holiday (Scotland) Act 2007, which designated the Day as an official bank holiday. If 30 November falls on a weekend, the next Monday is a bank holiday instead. Although it is a bank holiday, banks are not required to close and employers are not required to give their employees the day off as a holiday.
The University of St Andrews traditionally gives the day for all the students as a free holiday, but this is not a binding rule.
The Saltire
St Andrew's Day is an official flag day in Scotland. The Scottish Government's flag-flying regulations state that the Flag of Scotland (the Saltire or Saint Andrew's Cross) shall fly on all its buildings with a flagpole. Prior to 2002, the Scottish Government followed the UK Government's flag days and would only fly the Union Flag on St Andrew's Day. The regulations were updated to state that the Union Flag would be removed and replaced by the Saltire on buildings with only one flagpole.
The flying of the Union Flag from Edinburgh Castle on all days, including St Andrew's Day causes anger among some Scottish National Party politicians who have argued that the Saltire should fly on 30 November instead. However, the Union Flag is flown by the British Army at the Castle as it still is an official British Army flag flying station.
Celebrations
In Scotland, and many countries with Scottish connections, St Andrew's Day is marked with a celebration of Scottish culture with traditional Scottish food, music and dance. Schools across Scotland hold special St Andrew's Day events and activities including art shows, Scottish country dancing, lunchtime Ceilidhs, dance festivals, storytelling, reciting and writing poems, writing tall tales, cooking traditional Scottish meals, and bagpipe-playing. In Scotland the day is also seen as the start of a season of Scottish winter festivals encompassing St Andrew's Day, Hogmanay and Burns Night.[8] In Edinburgh, there is a week of celebrations, concentrating on musical entertainment and traditional ceilidh dancing. A ceilidh is a social event with couples dancing in circles or sets (groups of eight people). In Glasgow city centre, a large shindig, or party, with traditional music and a ceilidh are held. In Dumfries, songs are performed in the Burn's night tradition.
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Happy Samhain or Halloween
From Scotland.org Halloween Traditions
Like many ancient festivals, Samhain continued with the coming of Christianity. November 1st was henceforth to be All Saints Day. The night before was Eve of All Saints Day, or the Eve of All Hallows. But while the name might have changed, old habits persisted. Halloween was a time when witches and warlocks might walk abroad, engaged in wicked practices. In many parts of Scotland it was customary to leave an empty chair and a plate of food for invisible guests. People believed that it was the night when the souls of the dead were set free to roam. They might come into their houses and eat at their tables. The hour before midnight was the witching hour when the departed returned. Silence was marked as the chimes of midnight rang out.
Its not hard to understand why, in Scotland of all places, Halloween continued to be important. Much of the nations history involves the supernatural. From the witches of Macbeth as imagined by William Shakespeare to the real burning of women, accused of working with the devil, in a rash of satanic trials during the seventeenth century. There is a special atmosphere in many parts of Scotland even to this day where, as daylight fades, the flames of Halloween bonfires show up ancient ramparts of castles and buildings where devilish deeds once may have been done.
Robert Burns, Scotland's greatest bard, wrote extensively of how ancient beliefs had survived well into the Christian era, as he twisted stories of witchcraft and the devil with the traditions kept alive during Halloween. What is remarkable is how so much of the pagan past persists to this day. Bonfires, which once were lit to scare away the undead, still illuminate the October sky. Lanterns, which in Scotland were always carved out of turnips, are fashioned for the same purpose. Until recently trick or treat was unknown in Scotland. Instead children here dressed up in old clothes, blackened their faces or pretended to be evil spirits and went guising. The custom traces back to a time when it was thought that by disguising children in this way they would blend in with the spirits that went abroad that night. Any such child who approached a house would be given an offering to ward off evil. These days’ children who knock on their neighbours doors have to sing for their supper. Or tell stories for a gift of sweets or money.
Children's parties are still an important element of Halloween. One of the most popular games in Scotland is dookin' for apples, where bairns (children) have their hands tied behind their backs and try and grab apples from a basin full of water.
Apple dookin usually follows on from the game of treacle scones. Here again the hands of the children are tied, and sometimes they are also blindfolded. Participants are invited to bite a scone, covered in treacle, hanging from a rope. Messy faces are usually then washed in the apple basin!
As part of the Tweed Valley Forest Festival in November 2008, the town of Peebles set the world record for the most amount of people to dook for apples at one time. Amongst the 70-strong participants was a local MP and a councillor.
The modern world has had an effect on some of these customs. Pumpkins are now as common as turnips for lanterns. Children turn up shouting trick or treat and expect gifts without having to perform, and traditional songs and games are dying out in some areas. But there is still sufficient spookiness in old Scotland to ensure that the Halloween rituals will be as everlasting as the spirits that are said to return to earth when dusk arrives on October 31st.



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As anyone who has visited the Highlands of Scotland will attest, there are vast open spaces where sheep roam freely as far as the eye can see. Since the introduction of sheep as the principal crop of the Highlands, the shepherd has depended upon his faithful sheep dog to assist him in managing his flock.
Sheep dog demonstrations are presented by Carol Anne Bailey and her Border Collies from The Red Creek Farm from Townville SC.
http://www.smhg.org/sheepdog.php
#2016SMHG

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The word "FALCONRY" has an ancient ring about it and rightly so as about four thousand years ago, sportsmen of China and the Far East trained falcons for hunting and sport. Throughout the ages the fascination of a working alliance between man and hawk has never lost its appeal. The grandest birds, were reserved for Kings and Emperors as only they could afford the time and money necessary to train and maintain them, but lesser hawks of all descriptions were kept by humbler folk to help keep their Larders filled.
Falconry demonstrations at the Falcon encampment are presented by members of Georgia Falconry Association.
http://georgiafalconryassociation.com/
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Friday Night of the Games Weekend! Do you love great piping? Come to the Host Hotel and hear the Professional Piping Contest! It's free of charge for the audience. There will be two rooms hosting this contest, one for 'light music' (the faster music) and one room will host the original music for the bagpipe, the 'big music', Piobaireachd (pronounced: Pee-brock).
Here is a photo of last year's winner, Derek Midgley. This year we have 8 pipers registered for this amazing contest!
Come and join us, competition begins at 6pm!
Location:
Hilton Atlanta Northeast
5993 Peachtree Industrial Blvd., Peachtree Corners, Georgia, 30092-3416, USA
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