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Scottish Festival

Clans to celebrate Scot traditions

Kentucky Scottish Weekend
teaches history with festival

By Helen E. McKinney
Contributing Writer

(May 2002) CARROLLTON, Ky. – Education is a major theme of the Kentucky Scottish Weekend, held May 10-12 at Gen. Butler State Resort Park. This is the 20th anniversary for the festival, which began as a Saturday afternoon picnic.
Many aspects of the Scottish culture and its history are explored through demonstrations of athletic games, highland dance, piping and drumming.
The first day, known as Wee Scots Day, is devoted to area elementary school children. From 9:30 a.m. until 2 p.m., different workshops are presented, with concerts in the afternoon, said park recreation supervisor, Tanya Supplee. All instructors are volunteers and the importance of education is stressed, she said. This special day requires pre-registration. Supplee said between 400 and 600 children attended last year’s event.

Scottish Man

Clans who gather each
year in Carrollton dress
in authentic uniforms.

Allen Miller is always a favorite with the kids with his boarder collies. Children will also learn about Scottish music by listening to Alex Beaton and Celtic Soul.
Jesse Andrews has been president of the Kentucky Scottish Weekend for the past decade. He said there were two key people instrumental in assisting him and his wife, Billie, in founding the event – Lois Glover and Charles Marlatt. Glover was a parks employee; Marlatt was a pipe major for what is now known as the Louisville Pipe Band.
This first festival drew 60 to 70 people, said Andrews. Seeing that others were interested, he and his wife teamed with Glover and Marlatt to set a date for the following year’s event.
“That was the beginning of it all,” said Andrews.
Butler Park was chosen as a location because it is a halfway point between Cincinnati and Louisville, where most members reside. Throughout the years, many new events have been added. Seminars are scheduled for Saturday and Sunday that provide insight into Scottish history and culture.
“Jean Marlatt, who is now deceased, worked for the state of Kentucky, and history and education was so important to her that she is the one that started the seminars,” said Billie Andrews, the event’s secretary.
The Kentucky Humanities Council sponsors these seminars each year.
“The speakers are all interesting and good teachers,” said Andrews. “We try to pick someone with a knowledge of the history of Scotland.”
Dr. Joseph F. Foster, a University of Cincinnati professor, will take part this year. Foster will be speaking on “Celtic Languages: Their Place in Europe and the World.” Celtic languages are now spoken only in remote and isolated areas of the British Isles and France.
Other seminar topics include: famous Scottish psychics, famous Scottish ghosts, ancient Celtic cosmology, and haunted castles.

• Admission is $12 adults, $5 for ages 6-12, for the entire weekend. Children under 6 free. For information visit: www.kyscottishweekend.org.

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