Bagpipes and burly men return this weekendA conflict in schedules will mean an early appearance for this year’s Minnesota Scottish Fair at the Dakota County Fairgrounds.
By: Nathan Hansen, The Farmington Independent
A conflict in schedules will mean an early appearance for this year’s Minnesota Scottish Fair at the Dakota County Fairgrounds.
The annual celebration of Scottish heritage is typically held the third Saturday in May, but with Macalester College’s bagpipe band celebrating its 60th anniversary this year the band needed to be on campus for graduation. Graduation, it turns out, is the third weekend in May.
That means Farmington residents and everyone else will have one less week to wait to get their fill of kilts and bagpipes, caber tosses and highland cattle.
This year’s Scottish fair will take place Saturday at the Dakota County Fairgrounds. Gates will open at 8 a.m., and general events will run from 9 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. The McCracken Pub tent will stay open from 5:30 to 8 p.m. with music from Celtic musicians.
The early appearance shouldn’t mean any reduction in activity. This year’s event will add a Scottish harp competition and some new bands for the pub tent. There will be classic British cars on hand, including a Rolls Royce that has a connection to the royal family, though Don Cogswell, the president of the group that organizes the fair, wasn’t sure what the connection was.
The festival will also feature 10 bagpipe bands, about twice as many as usual.
Cogswell swears that’s a good thing.
“That’s going to be, like, 250 pipers out there for the mass band,” he said. “That’s going to be impressive.”
There will be 25 competitors for the Scottish heavy games and reenactors from Clann Tartan staging battles.
“I’m really excited about it,” Cogswell said. “It looks like it’s going to be a nice day, so that’s even better.”
For more information on the fair go to www.mnscottishfair.org.