Let the Games begin: Glengarry Highland Games goes virtual as the next best thing to experience
In its 73 year history, the Glengarry Highland Games have never been canceled until this year. It seems strange not to prepare for the Games, not only for the Games Directors, but for all those in Glengarry who rely on the Games to be the summer gathering place for family and friends up close or from afar.
This week things are much calmer in the counties and Maxville will certainly not receive the thousands of visitors who start arriving on Wednesday and fill the streets and fairgrounds for Games days.
There is a big void for everyone what to do with this weekend that can match the excitement and camaraderie of the Games. At the Games, we found some new ways to keep the Games alive by using our social media to post virtual Games events. Nothing can replace reality, but organizers are hopeful that everyone will come together in COVID-19 protected groups and continue the Games festivities using some of the interesting material found on the Games website, Facebook, Instagram, Twitter and YouTube.
Welcome to games virtually
To help you through this Games week, here are some things in progress to create a virtual Games experience.
If you’re reading this before Wednesday night and are looking for some merchandise of the Games, especially the special 2020 jersey, head to Maxville and the Games Administration Building. Sales will take place from 6 p.m. to 9 p.m. Bring your mask and beware: payment is accepted by debit or credit only.
Throughout the week, you can test your knowledge and experiences with the Games on the Trivia and Bingo games Facebook pages. Challenge family and friends for the title of Games champion. Wednesday will feature photos from past golf tournaments that have raised funds for many local organizations over the years. What could be more fun than wearing a kilt that swirls as you hit the mighty white ball.
Starting Thursday at 6 p.m., check out the Facebook page for a very entertaining video with many game directors throwing the token. You’ll see a lot of familiar faces and a lot of good attempts to look like the pros as they throw one of the Games’ famous Beer Tokens. No tokens or directors were harmed in this video.
On Thursday on Facebook, take a look at some nostalgic photos of the Tartan Balls past. To kick off the Games weekend, participants gather in their finest Scottish outfits for an evening of dinner and dancing and of course, the haggis.
On Saturday August 1, short videos will be shown on some of the favorite moments from the Games, the heavyweights, Glengarry My Home, a preview of the pitch by drone and of course, Amazing Grace. Check out the results of the Virtual Kilt Run which will also be released on Saturday.
Wherever you go during Games weekend, you can enjoy the best of Celtic music by streaming our two playlists on Spotify and Apple Music. Search under Glengarry Highland Games 2020 Weekend Edition. Choose either the playlist with catchy party songs or the one with traditional Celtic tunes, depending on your listening pleasure. What a great soundtrack for your Games reunion.
Visit the Games virtually
Friday at 4 p.m., the premiere of a video, the virtual edition of the Glengarry Highland Games, will take place. Many heavyweights from the Games, Highland dancers, violinists and Celtic bands came together, volunteering their time and talent to create mini-games for your entertainment. Recorded live last weekend, this collection of Glengarry talent will bring back the many special sights and sounds that make up every Games. Organizers hope you find a moment in the video that brings the Games to life for you.
Gather your friends and watch the video creating your own version of the Games. The video will be available over the weekend on the Games’ Facebook pages and website and watch it when it fits into your weekend plans. The organizers hope you enjoy great music, great entertainment and a taste of the Games to fit in perfectly with your weekend plans. You will likely see some of your friends and many Games personalities on the 90 minute show. To the artists, athletes and entertainers, the organizers warmly thank for providing a glimpse of the special moments that make our Games so memorable. We also thank SDG counties for their support in producing this video for your viewing pleasure.
Watch the tease posted now on our social networks. For those in Cornwall and the region, Cogeco Cornwall will be showing the virtual video over the weekend. Check your local listings.
Zoom Massed Highland Fling
Last Sunday 230 Highland dancers gathered on Zoom for a Massed Highland Fling. Dancers from around the world, including Australia, Switzerland, Ireland, Scotland, the United States and across Canada, danced for one minute and 24 seconds to the sound of Glen Sinclair. Adult world champion Marielle Lesperance of Prince Edward Island joined the dance, along with three generations of Maxville dancers, former Games Director Lois McLeod, her daughter Heather and his granddaughter Layla. You will definitely want to watch this performance when it is posted on our sites on Friday July 31st.
Best wishes from the Games
The Games Committee may not bring you the real thing, but the members hope you enjoy revisiting past Games and attending a few special events to fill the hours of Games weekend.
The committee thanks the Glengarry News for its additional tribute to the Games and to all the advertisers who participated in the supplement and wished the Games good luck.
The Games Committee would like to thank everyone who gave so generously of their time and talent to create this virtual edition of the Glengarry Highland Games.
For Glengarry, the Games last more than two days in midsummer. It’s a time when the Glengarrians welcome the world to Maxville and show them what this small part of Scotland means to the residents of the region. This year, the Games will not be celebrating the winner of the North American Pipe Band Championship ™, nor will they fill the stands for the Friday Night Tattoo or the Saturday Night mass groups, but will always be in their small group ways. . celebrate the spirit of the Games.
Visit the Games website, glengarryhighlandgames.com, and find all the links to Facebook events, Instagram posts, Twitter tweets and YouTube videos.
As you organize your own Games celebration, post your photos on Games social media and share them with us. If you’re strapped for ideas, check out Ten Ways to Celebrate the Games.
The Games organizers wish everyone a great Games Weekend and look forward to seeing you on July 30 and 31, 2021 at the Glengarry Highland Games.
10 ways to celebrate the Games
- Gather your friends and family (by covid rules) and watch the video games launch on Friday, July 31 at 4 p.m. ET. Stream the video to your smart tv and have a little ceilidh. Find someone with a spotlight and a sheet and have a backyard party. Replay the video on both nights and host two great Games evenings.
- Watch the games token throw airing Thursday, July 30 at 6 p.m. and see how well your favorite game directors throw the token. Place bets on who will drop the chip.
- Guess the Games trivia and bingo questions, and have a contest with friends to see who knows more about the Games.
- Watch the Massive Highland Adventure which will be posted to Facebook on Friday morning and see dancers from all over the world join our own local dancers. Guess how many dancers will appear.
- Gather your friends and family and host a mini heavyweight event. Have different classes – Masters, Pros, Amateur, Women and Juniors. Check out this website for ideas on how to create your events: https://www.instructables.com/id/Backyard-Highland-Games/
- For a fee, the Glengarry Pipe Band organizes “PIPERGRAMS”. Pipes, drummers and dancers will come to your home with your bubble friends to celebrate the Games. They advertise on their Facebook, Instagram and Twitter sites.
- Stream Glengarry Highland Games playlists on Spotify and Apple. There is a party list and a traditional one, so you can play the one that suits your group. Great for listening while cutting the hay or commuting to work or just hanging out on Games Weekend. Links can be found on the Games’ Facebook and Instagram pages.
- Be sure to read the Glengarry News supplement on July 29 and learn more about the history of the Games and why people keep coming back decade after decade.
- Remember that the Kirkin ‘of the Tartan event will be a video of the 2009 Kirkin’ of the Tartan event. Watch for it on the Games website.
- Pull out your tartan and Games shirts and fill the streets of our towns of Glengarry with your Scottish pride. Create your own clan parade.