Argyll won’t cower from best at Cowal
THE LARGEST and ‘most spectacular’ Highland games in the world is underway and Argyll competitors are keen to make a lasting impression.
The three-day extravaganza that is Cowal Highland Gathering kicked off yesterday (Thursday August 24) with the Scottish National Highland Dancing Championships, and promises a busy schedule of events right through to the firework finale on Saturday.
Organisers have promised that 2017 will once again bring a huge range of family attractions, with a mix of Highland dancing, piping, wrestling, children’s entertainment, local food and much more.
And with hundreds of the world’s best Highland dancers, pipers, heavy athletes and traditional wrestlers prepared to battle it out to be crowned Cowal champion there’s sure to be a few Argyll faces in the mix.
More than 700 dancers from all corners of the globe are expected to take the stage as the gathering hosts both the Scottish and World Highland Dancing Championships, with classes, qualifiers and finals staggered over the three days.
This year the piping competitions has seen an increase in entrants, with 77 solo pipers signing up, in addition to the many pipe bands. Showing just what Argyll has to offer the piping world on Saturday will be Mid Argyll Pipe Band; Dunoon Grammar School; Oban High School; Kintyre Schools; Dunoon Argyll; Rothesay and District; Isle of Islay; Oban Pipe Band; and the new grade one champions of the world Inveraray and District, as they all compete throughout the day in the Cowal Pipe Band Championship.
The traditional Highland games disciplines have always formed the cornerstone of the gathering but in recent years there has been so much more to enjoy.
Among other attractions are the Ridgeside Falconry Display team, Scotland’s premier cycle stunt team The Clan, a Glasgow Science Centre tent and the event’s famous ceilidh tent - this year boasting a line up including Eriskay Lilt, Heron Valley, HO-RO and Manran.
For more information and full event schedules visit the gathering’s website at www. cowalgathering.com.
The piping competitions at Cowal Gathering will be fierce.
Concentration from dancers.