Mecklenburg County Commission of
NC issued a proclamation recognizing Tartan Day and April as
Scottish Heritage month.
March 29th in Wilson, NC. – Reported by Julia Batchelor,
president of the Down East Scottish Society, Inc. , which serves
Nash, Edgecombe, and Wilson Counties of North Carolina.
The event was held at the Wilson County Public Library. We weren’t
thwarted by the rain, in torrents, all day today and continued with
our plans to hold our first sponsored event. Just prior to our start
up time of 3:00 pm, the rain stopped and didn’t continue until
completion of our event. This celebration gave us our first
opportunity to announce Governor Mike Easley’s Proclamation
designating April, 2003 as “ Scots – Irish Heritage “ month. Julia
M. Batchelor, had requested that designation and we are pleased that
Governor Easley honored her request. Wilson Mayor Rose had the
honors of reading the Governor’s Proclamation. Piping music was
provided by Patrick Unrein. Thomas Boyd, on the Down East Scottish
Society, Inc.’s Board of Directors, presented the Tartan Day history
and information. The society donated a copy of George Black’s “
Surnames of Scotland “ to the library. Patrick Valentine, director
of the library, accepted the book and acknowledged that it would be
a valuable research tools for those who are searching for their
March 29-30th at the NC Renaissance Faire held at the State
Fairgrounds in Raleigh, NC reported by Tartan Day Coordinator, Judi
This event kicked off the week with Scottish clans and associations
sharing a booth donated by the NC Renaissance Faire. Each clan
brought a piece of tartan and flags to decorate the space. This is
one of the few times it may be considered OK to mix and match your
tartans. Information and brochures about Tartan Day and about
upcoming local games such as Loch Norman in Huntersville, NC and
Grandfather Mountain in Linville, NC as well as the Scottish Tartans
Museum were given away to Faire goers. Hundreds of names were looked
up in Scottish names’ resource books and inquiry cards made out for
many clans’ information. Saturday was beautiful and there was a very
big crowd. Sunday turned nasty with sleet and snow falling mid
afternoon, putting quite a damper on the number of people attending.
Representatives at this event included Larry Haynes, Vice President
of Clan Hay, Don Mitchell, Commissioner of Clan Innes, Bob Morrison,
Regional Seneschal for the Southeastern Region of Clan Morrison,
Bill Jarrett, Scotch- Irish Society Membership Secretary, and Judi
Lloyd, Scottish District Families Association President, with
members Lynda Pletcher and Paul Smallwood.
The Down East Scottish Society gathered at 11:30 am, April 5th at
the beautiful Town Common in Tarboro, NC to sponsor our second 2003
Tartan Day Celebration. Patrick Unrein from Tarboro, NC provided our
music on the Great Highland Pipes.
Six Robert Bell, President of the Appalachian Branch of Clan
MacMillan, had the honors of reading Governor Easely’s Proclamation
designating April 2003 a Scots-Irish Heritage Month. Dr. Kenneth
Lovette represented Howell Memorial Presbyterian Church during the
reading of the Proclamation. Tarboro Town Mayor, Donald Morris and
Town Manager, Sam Noble, welcomed us and thanked us for donation of
a Red Maple tree, which is now planted in the Town Common, to honor
Beltain. Chris Logan, Society Vice President, presented the Tartan
Day history and information. Area residents joined our well
represented Society group to enjoy our event. We had just enough
time to chat with the residents and answer questions about our
Society and Tartan Day, then off to our Event #3.
Torrents of rain fell on us between the Tarboro Event and the Rocky
Mount one, but as we began to set up there was a wonderful break in
the weather. April 5th, 2:00pm our Society representatives and area
residents gathered to honor Tartan Day at the beautiful City Lake in
Rocky Mount, NC. The program agenda was identical to our Tarboro
event including the piping by Patrick Unrein. We were fascinated
that the ducks on the Lake seemed to enjoy Patrick’s piping as much
as we did. Honored guests at our City Lake Event were: Cher Street,
Executive Directory, Nash Arts; William Hogan, Rocky Mount Chief of
Police; and Alan Richardson, Chairman, Tree Power Program. Sir
Robert Bell again read the proclamation, and with him was the
Reverend David Q. Garrison who represented the Bethlehem
Presbyterian Church. Our society donated a Cherry Tree to the City
Lake in honor Beltain.
Noted at the planting of trees at
City Lake and at the Town Common – “ We are planting trees to honor
the Scots who have planted their roots in this area of North
April 5 – Tartan Day activities in Franklin, NC, sponsored by
the Scottish Tartans Museum – reported by Matt Newsome of the
Scottish Tartans Museum.
The day began cold and rainy, but the sun shone through in time for
our 11:00 am Parade of Tartans down Main Street in Downtown
Franklin. The Scottish Tartans Color Guard marched in the parade
with museum Piper in Residence Jean Hayes. Members of the Friends of
the Scottish Tartans Museum, representatives from Clan Gordon and
local families also marched, each carrying their tartan banners
marched in the parade.
After the parade, the Friends of the museum served a Light lunch of
Scotch Broth, shortbread, and various appetizers to visitors. Tours
were given of the museum, while Jean Hayes provided pipe music and
the 4-H “ Braveheart “ Scottish Country Dancers danced.
April 6th – Pinehurst, NC – reported by Judi Lloyd, NC Tartan
The event in Pinehurst was coordinated by Jane McPhaul of Southern
Pines and was sponsored by Scottish Heritage, USA, Inc, the St.
Andrew’s Society of NC, Inc, and the Flora MacDonald Highland Games,
The day started with a kirking lf the tartans at the Brownson
Memorial Presbyterian Church where piper, Angus Kelly, of Dillon, NC
performed the professional and recessional. The orgin of Tartan Day
was explained both in the church bulletin and also to the children
during the service during the “ Moment with our Children “. Alison
Hearn Atkins performed the offertory solo.
Immediately following the kirking
there was a buffet luncheon at the Country Club of North Carolina
with piper, Dylan Kelly, of High Point, NC, playing outside the door
of the club as visitors entered. The group, Crockan Crayee, from
Seagrove, NC, played during lunch. A short musical program featured
the lively vocalist, Alison Hearn Atkins, Flora MacDonald Gammon who
sang some of the traditional Scottish songs and accompanied herself
on the mountain dulcimer, husband, John Dall joined her in one of
her ballads, and lastly Scottish Highland Dancers in Fayetteville,
NC. Performed the highland fling and sword dance. Following the
entertainment it was tea time with Crockan Crayee again performing
during the light tea and conversation time. Several people then
adjourned to Jane’s home where a tent had been set up, more food was
being served, and John Dall performed Robert Burns Ode to the
Haggis. Then we settled to good food, friends, and conversation
Flora MacDonald Gammon and husband, John Dall, entertain at the
NC Country Club in Pinehurst, NC on Tartan Day.
NC Renaissance Faire, March 29th – Bill Jarrett of the Scotch –
Irish Society explains Tartan Day to a visitor while Bob Morrison of
Clan Morrison looks on. Background, left to right, Larry Hanes of
Clan Hay and Don Mitchell of Clan Innes.
Outside the Scottish Tartans Museum on April 5th
Patrick Unrein, piper at the Wilson, Rocky Mount, and Tarboro events
Sir Robert Bell reading Governor Easley’s proclamation at Rocky
Photo courtesy of Rocky Mount, NC Police Chief Bill Hogan.
Scottish Tartan Museum – ‘ Braveheart Scottish Country Dancers “
affiliated with the local 4-H group. The little girl in the red
plaid is Jamie-Beth Suminkski. Boys’ names unknown.