Take your kilt! RedStone Highland Games & Festival come back bigger, bolder and more Scottish – St George News
Events at RedStone Highland Games & Festival, St. George, Utah, date unspecified | Photo courtesy of Kathy Rawlings, St. George News
CONTRIBUTED CONTENT – From the heather-covered highlands of Scotland to the sun-drenched red cliffs of St. George, Celtic heritage will be on full display this weekend. Grab your kilt and head to Sandtown Park for the return of the “RedStone Highland Games & Festival”.
This exciting heritage festival is free to the public and packed with Scottish-inspired entertainment for the whole clan. Events will take place on Friday afternoon and most of Saturday. Highlights include Highland athletics, a vendor’s market, the gathering of Scottish clans, and an extensive list of entertainment including live bagpipes. There is also Celtic cuisine with giant inflatables for little girls and ladies.
But you don’t have to be Scottish to enjoy RedStone, said event founder Kathy Rawlings. The festival is a time to come together as a community and celebrate roots and branches wherever you are.
“RedStone is about honoring our past and our future as we come together to keep our family foundations strong, regardless of national heritage,” said Rawlings. “We are honored to bring this fun and exciting festival back to Southern Utah.”
Rawlings and her husband Dave hosted the first RedStone event in 2018. It was originally slated to serve as the opener for the Utah Heavy Athletics Highlands games season. However, they quickly realized the potential to engage the community with something special.
“We’re not making a dime, but the rewards are endless,” she said. “We are so pleased and amazed at the warm welcome and the good people who are now the heart and soul of the RedStone clan. ”
As intended by the will of the ancestors, Rawlings reserved Sandtown Park as the venue for the festival. She later learned from a local historian that the Sandtown area of St. George was once settled by early Scottish settlers.
Always a jaw-dropping attraction, the muscular Utah Heavy Athletics will take to center court to throw hammers, stones and caber poles during the Highland Games competition on Saturday. And don’t miss the Strongman Competition from 4 p.m. to 7:30 p.m. on Friday.
The Highland Games began centuries ago as sporting competitions between clans struggling to be the strongest and the best. Last year, the RedStone Highland Games competition broke the state record for most athletes competing in a Utah heavy track and field event. Rawlings said the crowd absorbed every drop of determination and sweat.
The Honorable Michael McFarland of the MacFarlane Clan will preside as Chief of the Games and announce the traditional Gathering of the Clans event. Rawlings said many individual clans come together at the event each year with their own booths, historical heirlooms, clan cards, tartans, stories, legends and valuable family history information. Families can discover their own clan ties and are warmly welcomed in their circles.
Joshua Creek from Utah will join the famous Salt Lake Scottish bagpipe troupe for their Friday night concert. Both groups are expected to perform throughout the day on Saturday.
Entertainment lineup also includes local favorites Bret Sevy and Wooden Tantrum Celtic and Bob the Magician & the RedStone Storytellers, professional purveyors of Scottish tradition. The crowd will also be treated to a grand appearance from Her Majesty Mary, Queen of Scots and her royal attendants.
And if you’re looking for unique gifts to share this holiday season, look no further. Plan an unforgettable shopping trip to the vendor stalls of the Celtic Market. These retailers from across the country come together every year at RedStone to carry traditional Scottish items including kilts, sporrans and jewelry. There will also be fine artisans from the St. George area to add a local flavor to the shopping experience.
Speaking of flavor, you can also sample authentic Scottish cuisine from Oscar’s Meat Pies and Welsh Bakery. There’s also a barbecue, food trucks, and plenty of sweet treats, including homemade cinnamon rolls from Lark’s Nest.
RedStone is in partnership with Switchpoint Community Resource Center, a non-profit organization that helps homeless people in the St. George area. Switchpoint provides tools to get life back on track for those who need it most. Festival visitors are invited to stop by their booth to find out how they can engage and help in their efforts.
Join the fun and let yourself be whisked away to the hills of Scotland. Cheer on your favorite Highland athlete, browse Celtic merchandise, grab a bite to eat, and be enchanted by ancient Highland music and dance.
Written by ALEXA MORGAN for St. George News.
• SPONSORED CONTENT •
- What: RedStone Highland Games & Festival.
- When: Friday October 15 from 4 p.m. to 9 p.m. and Saturday October 16 from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m.
- Where: Sandtown Park, 600 N. Bluff St., St. George.
- Tickets: Free.
- Resources: Website.
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