When the gates open on Friday, August 2nd for the 72nd edition of the Glengarry Highland Games, many of the people who enter the grounds are children. Many of these are competitors in the highland dancing competitions that run both Friday and Saturday with over 200 dancers competing at all ages and all levels of dancing skill. The Arena is the new location for Highland Dancing and provides shade and cover no matter what the weather. There is ample seating providing excellent views as the young athletes display their intricate and synchronized steps on their way to medals, trophies and dancing records.
On Saturday, August 3rd, World, North American, Canadian and Ontario Champions showcase their best in dancing at the Glengarry Highland Games Open Championship. At the end of the day, one fortunate dancer from SDG will be awarded the John Angus Carther Trophy for the highest combined points.
This year’s judges are Cheryl Kirby from Quechee, Vermont whose successful competitive dancing career has provided her with many Championship wins. She is currently a dance instructor in her own school and also the Dance Director for the United States Naval Academy. Also judging will be Steven MacRae from Seattle, Washington. Having been involved in Highland Dancing over 25 years, Steven has many Championships in Scotland and North America. He also runs the MacRae Scottish Highland Dance School and has been a member of the SOBHD World Wide Judges’ Panel since 2014. The third judge for this year’s Dancing Competitions is Ashley Stowkowy from Calgary, Alberta. Following her successful competitive career, Ashley is now sharing her love of dance with another generation of champions. Ashley is a professional member with ScotDance Canada.
Children have many more opportunities to take part in the Games activities. The Junior Heavyweights, a mini version of the adult events, take place Saturday from 9:30-10:45 am behind the Sports Hall of Fame. Registration is online or from 8:30 to 9:00 am before the events. Highland attire is encouraged and parental supervision is requested. The events are open to children ages 3-12.
Later in the day, the Track and Field events are open to all ages with races of 60m, 200m, 400m, and 800m. Registration takes place online or on Saturday at the north end of the Grandstand from 12:30-1:30 pm. Races start at 2pm and take place on the infield.
A new offering this year is Children’s Broadsword which will take place on Saturday at 11:00 am for ages 6-8 and 11:30 am for ages 9 to 12. The event will take place behind the Sports Hall of Fame. Registration will take place from 8:30-9:00 am in the same location. More information will be posted when available.
For the younger set looking to be entertained, the Wee Bairns Area will be open both Friday and Saturday offering lots of fun things to do. Enjoy a petting zoo, a Scottish puppet show, Junior fiddling, piping and dancing and other Scottish entertainment geared for the younger set. Parents should accompany their children. All events take place under tents in a treed area behind the Metcalfe Centre.
The Games are a great family outing with admission for those under 12 free. Remember that once admission is paid at the Gate, all activities are free with the exception of the Grandstand seating.
See you and your family, young and old, at the Games.