Ceilidh Dance newsletter – 2012/13 #23

Even though I had a small part to play in it I think I am not boasting when I say that last night’s Burns Supper presented by the Tam O’Shanter Dancers was another amazing affair.   The hall was nicely decorated with the entrance way in particular making everything warm and welcoming.  It was a pity most guests just whisked through the entrance and did not take a few moments to admire the Stone of Destiny with some of its history as well as the beautiful display of roses and heather.

Everyone appreciated the prompt start and the MC made sure we all kept to the schedule so everything started on time.    The Entertainment, which included the youngest piper ever to lead the haggis in, was well received.   O’ Canada led by Grant was sung with gusto, Jim’s address to the Haggis got the evening off on the right note and then after dinner the talks by Derek, Joan, Hugh were very informative while the Immortal Memory by Peter, the Toast to the Lassies by Grant and the reply by Donna were clear with quite a bit of humour as well.   The songs by Westwynds were strong, lyrical, poignant and beautifully sung while the Tam’s three dances seemed to be danced flawlessly (well nearly as I know I faltered at least once) with lots of movement and smiling faces.   Maureen is to be complimented on her choreography and devising the last dance.

The Ceilidh dancing filled the floor and there was still a goodly crowd at midnight for Auld Lang Syne.  Next year is the 20th annual Tam O’ Shanter’s Burns Supper which is scheduled for Saturday, January 25, 2014 – make sure to order tickets early as it will be another sell out.   Many thanks to all who had a part of making this evening such a success – the only bad thing was that the last six tables did not get any haggis for which many apologies.   I guess the haggis was so good that 50 lbs was not enough for 300 people.   Probably more people are finding out it is good food and there are fewer who don’t take any.   Of course next year we will order more and be left with lots!!   The photographer was from the Surrey Now so check out their website at


On a sad note – Alan Brown, a former and long term member of the Branch Demonstration Team passed away last week.   Our thoughts and prayers go out to Anna.   For those interested please check the newspaper announcements as I don’t know what arrangements have been made.

There are some very good pictures taken at the January 4, 2013 Ceilidh Dance which have been posted on the RSCDS Vancouver Branch Facebook page. If you do not want your picture on that page please contact web@rscdsvancouver.org. The link for the pictures is:


The next Ceilidh Dance will be on Friday, February 1, 2013. Yes, I know it is not the last Friday of the month but there are so many Burns Suppers that I am involved in at the end of January and, of course, Mr. Burns birthday is on the 25th so, as in prior years, we put the Ceilidh Dance off for 1 week.

That means there are two Ceilidh Dances in February so you get a bonus!

I am also delighted to announce that for the Ceilidh Dance on March 22 we shall be dancing to the music of Gordon Shand and his band who will be in Vancouver for the weekend.

Registration for the Love to Dance wokshop and dance is now open.   You can register and pay online at www.rscdsvancouver.org  You are encouraged to register soon as this event has been oversubscribed in the past few years.

Tickets for the Heather Ball at the Gizeh Temple on March 23 with Gordon Shand and his Band from Scotland are also available online at www.rscdsvancouver.org


I am continuing to include these pictures of Scotland that I have been sent without any note as to where they are. Once again last week’s picture brought absolutely no responses even though I posted for two weeks in a row.  You can look back at last week’s and most prior newsletters by going to our website at www.vancouverceilidh.org.

This week looks very hard and once again to my eye it looks more West than East coast but I may be completely wrong. Hopefully at least one reader will recognize it and send me an e-mail – ceilidh@rscdsvancouver.org


Late night after the Burns Supper last night as we had to stay to take down the decorations, flood lights, etc. put away all the tables, chairs, etc., sweep the floor and generally tidy up then, as we were too hyped up or maybe we are just plain stupid we stayed up to watch the first set of the Australian Tennis final which we had taped and have yet to watch the sad conclusion.   I was up a few times with cramps in my legs – thought I had eaten and drunk enough but obviously not the right things.    Anyway I think I might just manage to get this out on time this week.

A busy week with practises for Burns events, classes where dances for Burns events were taught etc.  I had classes on Monday, Tuesday and Thursday, Addressed the haggis (hope I put on the correct postage) and danced on Wednesday, attended a Demonstration at lunch time on Friday then out to help set up and rehearse for Saturday and ending with last night’s Burns Event.

This week is looking like much the same with three classes, three demonstrations and the Ceilidh Dance.

CeltFest tickets are now on sale -Check out all the festival details at:  www.CelticFestVancouver.com 

A new website for kilts and accessories.   Prices seem excellent, no idea of quality or trustworthiness though:  www.aglowmusichouse.com

This newsletter will go out to 397 plus there are 2 more who are sitting waiting for them to accept the confirmation e-mail.  We are ever so close to the 400 mark maybe next week??   Please pass along the website to your friends and maybe they will subscribe – www.vancouverceilidh.org

Note: the Celtic Treasure Chest has some left over Christmas specials. – For the exact hours and more info see www.celtictreasurechest.ca. Just say you read about it in this newsletter.

If anyone has any suggestions or complaints regarding the newsletter please let me know – ceilidh@rscdsvancouver.org ==============================================================


Here are some quotes to inspire you….)
Woman inspires us to great things, and prevents us from achieving them.


Events happening early in 2013 include the Ceilidh Dance on Friday, February 1 and the Love to Dance Workshop on February 16.  Please see “Coming Events” below for all information.

I have not had any reports as to whether the Burns reading at SFU Downtown Campus last Friday broke the world record!   Perhaps someone will send me a report to include next week.


This year’s TAC Summer School of Scottish Country Dancing will be held in Mount Allison University, New Brunswick. Registration for all levels from beginner to advanced is now open and information can be found at www.tac-rscds.org


Holyrood Park


Jan 30 White Rock RSCDS Burns Party dance — 7 — 10 p.m. Sullivan Hall, 6306 152nd Street, Surrey BC — drop in $5 — everyone welcome — dancing, piper, address to the Haggis, refreshments, lots of fun!
Feb  1 Ceilidh Dance at the Scottish Cultural Centre — class at 7 dance 8 — 11 Admission $10 (students $8)
Feb 8 – 10 Edmonton Caledonian Branch Annual Workshop and Ball with teachers Pat Coyle, Canada; Janet Johnston, Scotland and Alan Twhigg, USA and music by Scottish Accent.   Information and registration forms at www.rscdsedmonton.com/content/2013-43rd-annual-workshop-and-ball
Feb  9 Bellingham monthly dance
Feb  9 RSCDS San Francisco Branch Valentine’s Ball with music by Andy Imbrie and The Reel of Seven.  All info from  sharon.stewart@comcast.net
Feb 15 – 17 Aloha Winter Workshop in Hawaii with teacher’s Bruce Herbold, David Newitt and Patti Cobb.   Music will be provided by the band The Humuhumunkunukuapua’a.   Registration deadline — January 15
Feb 16 50th Tartan Ball in the Royal York Hotel, Toronto.   Mark the date; info www.rscdstoronto.org
Feb 16 Love to Dance Scottish Workshop and Tea Dance at the Scottish Cultural Centre, 8886 Hudson Street, Vancouver — check on the website for info and registration forms – www.rscdsvancouver.org    Note that this event SOLD OUT last year so don’t wait.   Call 604-922-6842 for info
Feb 22 Ceilidh Dance at the Scottish Cultural Centre — class at 7 dance 8 — 11 Admission $10 (students $8)
Feb 24 — Mar 1 RSCDS Winter School, Atholl Palace Hotel, Pitlochry, Scotland with a wonderful list of teachers and musicians.  A few spots left applications and info  https://www.rscds.org/shop.html?page=shop.product_details&flypage=flypage.tpl&product_id=257&category_id=9


  See website www.vancouverceilidh.org for a more complete list.

Seattle Branch announces the start of their Challenge Class which are held on the 2nd Friday each month in the upper building, Room 7, Phinney Neighbourhood Association, 4532 Phinney Avenue, North Seattle at 7:30 p.m.   Info at  www.rscds-seattle.org

Next class February 8, 2013

1. I contend that for a nation to try to tax itself into prosperity is like a man standing in a bucket and trying to lift himself up by the handle.— Winston Churchill

2. A government which robs Peter to pay Paul can always depend on the support of Paul. – George Bernard Shaw

3. A liberal is someone who feels a great debt to his fellow man, which debt he proposes to pay off with your money.— G. Gordon Liddy


When Insults Had Class
These glorious insults are from an era before the English language got boiled down to 4-letter words.

“I am enclosing two tickets to the first night of my new play; bring a friend…. if you have one.” – George Bernard Shaw to Winston Churchill
“Cannot possibly attend first night, will attend second.. if there is one.” – Winston Churchill, in response. 

= = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = =


To avoid it…
Eat right! 
Make sure you get your daily dose of fruit and veggies.
Take your vitamins and bump up your vitamin C.
Get plenty of exercise because it builds your immune system.
Walk for at least an hour a day.
Go for a swim,
take the stairs instead of the lift, etc..
Wash your hands often. 
If you can’t, keep a bottle of antibacterial stuff around.
Get lots of fresh air. 
Open doors & windows whenever possible.
Try to eliminate as much stress from your life as you can.
Get plenty of rest. 


Take the doctor’s approach.

Think about it… 
When you go for a flu shot, what do they do first?
They clean your arm with alcohol.
Because Alcohol KILLS GERMS. 

I walk to the pub.  (exercise)
I put lime in my vodka. (fruit)
Celery in my Bloody Mary.  (veggies)
Drink outdoors on the patio.  (fresh air)
Tell jokes and laugh.  (eliminate stress)
Then I pass out.  (rest)

The way I see it…
If you keep your alcohol levels up,
flu germs can’t get you! 


‘A shot in the glass
is better than one in the ass!’

= = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = =

Kippford Beach

The next Ceilidh Dance is Friday, February 1, 2013. You still have some time to spread the word about all the Ceilidh Dances as that is the best (and cheapest) form of advertising. It is great exercise and fun, for all ages, too.

Here is a link where you can watch a short video of a Ceilidh Dance: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0MvUwZnY9Ms

The format for all of the regular monthly Ceilidh Dances will be the same with the class from 7 — 8 p.m. and the dance from 8 — 11 p.m. and all dances will be walked and talked through. The price is only – $10 or $8 for students which, for what you get is a super bargain — everyone is welcome. No partner is required and you should wear FLAT, comfy shoes and loose clothing. Children are also welcome but should be prepared to dance with other people as some of the dances require a change of partner. Don’t forget to bring a few extra $$$$ to help defray the cost of the refreshments which are otherwise free.

Kirkton Glen, Balquidder

For those who enjoy listening to Scottish music, song, banter etc. try www.andysceilidh.co.uk/ this is a radio programme that you can get sent to you and listen any time you want. Andy is asking everyone to send in their requests so if you have a favourite Scottish tune, song, recitation, band, performer, choir or whatever send an e-mail to andyrossbw@aol.com



The Branch has opened a Facebook Page at “RSCDS-Vancouver” – check it out there are some good pictures etc. www.facebook.com/rscdsvancouver. There is a link on both our website www.vancouverceilidh.org and the Branch website www.rscdsvancouver.org

Pipers “playing”

It really is never too late to come along and join in one of many Scottish Country Dance (SCD) classes and JANUARY is a great time to do it as all the classes will be starting up again. You will be made very welcome. Many classes have a policy that the first night is FREE! Plan to come along to try out a class next week. There are classes all around and on different nights so


Go to either www.rscdsvancouver.org or www,vancouverceilidh.org for a list of class locations and times.

For those who don’t know SCD is a fabulous pastime which is super exercise for body and mind. SCD is, naturally, rooted in Scotland but there are groups in almost every country so you can learn here and then dance with other groups when you vacation or travel. SCD is not to be confused with Highland Dancing which is more solo dancing. SCD is usually done with a partner in groups or sets however you do not need to come with a partner. It is more akin to Square Dancing. It takes a year or two of classes, workshops, etc. to get the basics learnt then you can hone your skills in advanced classes. You start by learning the steps and formations. Dances (of which there are over 13,000) are made up of these formations so a good grounding will give you the ability to learn a new dance fairly quickly. SCD has its HQ in Scotland and is known as the Royal Scottish Country Dance Society (RSCDS) and there is a Vancouver Branch of the RSCDS under which there are many clubs throughout the Province (there also are Branches in Victoria and Seattle). There are a great many classes and the ones in the Vancouver area are listed below. Come along — check us out — the first night is usually free and thereafter it will average about $6 a night and that’s for a 2 hour class! You will find many friendly people who will be eager to help you and welcome you to their club. You never know you actually might like it!!

Check the list of classes at either at www.vancouverceilidh.org or www.rscdsvancouver.org. Note that the latter website has the latest updates to temporary changes to times and locations

as well there are classes all up and down Vancouver Island, a number of the Gulf Islands, the Cariboo, Okanagan, etc. etc. and there are various groups all over this great Province, Country, World and who knows where else! Check the Branch website for all these details – www.rscdsvancouver.org

Also the Inverary Step Dance class on Wednesdays in the French School, 1555 West 7th Ave., Vancouver- info b_campbell@dccnet.com


Riddles (answer next week)

Last week:
I am seen in the water
If seen in the sky,
I am in the rainbow,
A jay’s feather,
And lapis lazuli.

Answer:   Blue

This week:
Glittering points
That downward thrust,
Sparkling spears
That never rust.



Loch a Chroisg

For upcoming events see www.vancouverceilidh.org and www.rscdsvancouver.org.

Other announcements etc:

Seattle Branch – info at www.rscds-seattle.org


The next regular monthly Ceilidh Dance will be held on Friday, February 1, 2013 in the Scottish Cultural Centre, 8886 Hudson Street, (73rd & Hudson which is between Oak & Granville), Vancouver, We need everyone to help us get as many new comers (as well as former Ceilidh Dancers) as possible to come and join us. The Ceilidh Dances are a great way to celebrate birthdays, anniversaries, etc. Invite all your friends along. Contact me if you will have a group of 12 or more and we can give them a discount!!!

We Really NEED YOUR HELP to advertise the Ceilidh Dances!!!! What a nice way to celebrate the New Year. It really is good exercise as the ladies from Children’s Hospital found out in September. They thought it was way better than Yoga and said they will tell all their colleagues at the hospital to come to the next dance AND to bring their other friends, spouses, partners, etc. It only costs $10 – it is worth so much more in fun, exercise and camaraderie. Use any access to free adverts etc. You can also use things like the Youtube link https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Bh2HV3OPBgw or the Face-book page https://www.facebook.com/p.php?i=116203315&k=Z5C5Y4TZPT6G6BD1PKZZTWQQQ6BAW26L34AV&oid=164741310207760

Suggestions to improve our advertising are always welcome. Don’t forget to tell them about the website www.vancouverceilidh.org and get them to “subscribe” to the newsletter.

The cost is still the amazingly low price of $10 or $8 for students and we provide refreshments although we do ask for your donations towards their cost. We always need your support both by coming along and by helping us to advertise these dances by whatever means you use to communicate with your friends be it e-mail, Face-Book, Twitter, Text or even telephone! Most of you have been to at least one Ceilidh Dance so you know how it goes. You don’t need a partner; you don’t need any experience; you should wear FLAT soft soled shoes; we walk, talk, and call every dance and you should come to have fun and have a good evening on exercise and entertainment and maybe even to learn!

There is a FREE class from 7 — 8 p.m. and the dance from 8 — 11 p.m. with music by Calanais. Remember to bring some extra cash so you can make a donation towards the cost of the refreshments. Without these donations we will have to increase the price of admission again!!

The schedule for the 2012/13 season shapes up as follows:
All on Fridays of course —
February 1
February 22
March 22
April 26

Come along and get some great exercise while also having lots of fun. We are still working on improving the strength of the smile muscles as well as the bows and curtsies! Please do your best to assist us in letting as many people know as possible. Use Face-book, e-mail, telephone or even word of mouth and tell everyone you know what a fun night it is. We need to attract students from UBC, SFU and all the other colleges and universities. Somehow we have to get word out to these students. Please do all you can to help us. Come one, come all to the same place (Scottish Cultural Centre, 8886 Hudson Street, Vancouver) and the same time (7 p.m. for the class and 8 – 11 p.m. for the dance) and the same amazing price ($10 or $8 for students.)
You should check the website – www.vancouverceilidh.org – from time to time as you can find various pages listing “Ceilidhs and Events;” Classes:” Duncan’s List;” etc. On these pages you can check all the upcoming events, where all the classes are located, times, etc. and some places to find Scottish things or some local trades, etc. I will continue to highlight the more current events in each week’s newsletter but, as stated, the calendar of all events will be available on the website. You should also have a look at the Vancouver Branch website from time to time – www.rscdsvancouver.org – as there is always useful information on it and it is a very good looking site.

If you have any questions regarding the Ceilidh Dances send them to me at ceilidh@rscdsvancouver.org

Please check the website – www.rscdsvancouver.org for updates, pictures and news.
Dance — it is good for your health.

Loch Arklett

Observations On Growing Older 

~Your spouse is counting on you to remember things you don’t remember.

~The things you used to care to do, you no longer care to do, but you really do care that you don’t care to do them anymore.
Keep sending jokes, pictures and info you wish to have included. Don’t forget to look at our web pages at www.vancouverceilidh.org

If you know of anyone who would like to be on the mailing list please send them the web address – www.vancouverceilidh.org and ask them to subscribe. If anyone has good pictures from the Ceilidh Dances please send them to me so I can put them on the web page.

If you have any announcements please send them to me preferably in Word; Times New Roman 12pt format with a layout similar to the one used in this newsletter. I occasionally hear of an event somewhere in our beautiful Province, on the Island or in the Interior, but don’t know all the details. This newsletter reaches out to some 397 subscribers (two more from last week and ever so close to the 400 mark!) from all over the Province, Country and to many other countries as well, so please send me the details of your event and I will only be too happy to include them. Note:- I normally compose the newsletters on Sundays.


Girlie Wisdom!

My mind not only wanders, it sometimes leaves completely. 

The nice part about living in a small town is that when you don’t know what you are doing, someone else does.


Loch Doon

Enjoy yourselves – come Scottish Country Dancing – for it is good for your health and you never know you just might …..!

May your troubles be l, may your blessings be more,
may nothing but happiness come through your door.

Duncan ceilidh@rscdsvancouver.org