Highland Games bring Scotland to Whidbey

"The historic Greenbank Farm will become part of the Scottish highlands for a day when the Whidbey Island Highland Games return on Saturday, Aug. 11.Visitors will hear the sound of bagpipes and the cadence of drums as pipers and drummers compete before the judges. Scottish highland dancers will perform the highland and national dances of Scotland. And in an amazing show of athletics, the games will include feats of skill and strength that are unfamiliar to most islanders -- competitors will deftly toss the caber, put the stone and throw the hammer.There is even a kids' athletic event: a sheep toss contest with a stuffed sheep -- a tamer version of the traditional sheef toss. The centerpiece of the games is the competitions, said organizer Julie Riise. The Whidbey Island Highland Games will also celebrate the tradition of Scottish music and culture. Celtic performances are scheduled throughout the day on the Main Stage, and visitors can stroll among the Clan Tents and possibly trace their ancestry.Of course there's a market to browse, offering traditional Scottish clothing, Celtic jewelry, literature, music and more. And food vendors provide a variety of menu items, for both Scottish and American tastes. The activities at the Greenbank Farm begin at 9 a.m. Entrance fees are $7 for adults, $5 for children 6-12 years of age; children 5 and under get in free. For more information contact the Whidbey Island Celtic Society at 331-5437. "

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