Ceilidh Dance newsletter – 2012/13 #28  

– the clocks jump forward next weekend!!

Saint David's Day

St. David’s Day, the patron saint of Wales, was March 1 so all our best wishes to our Welsh friends.

Went to the theatre this afternoon.   If you have seen the film 39 Steps and maybe grew up in the UK you should try and go and see “39 Steps” which is playing at the Surrey Arts Centre until March 9.   You will thoroughly enjoy the show and it is not what you think!!   Very funny.


Yet another of these pictures of Scotland that I have been sent without any note as to where they are. Last week’s picture brought for a second week in a row no responses!   So I will give up and give you a new one to ponder.  You can look back at most prior newsletters by going to our website at www.vancouverceilidh.org.   Hopefully this week someone will know where it is – send me an e-mail – ceilidh@rscdsvancouver.org

There were 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 is on Friday, March 22, 2013 which is a week before Easter and therefore not the last Friday of the month.   The Gordon Shand Band, who are coming from Scotland to play at the Heather Ball on March 23 have agreed to play for this Ceilidh Dance.   Many thanks to both the Heather Ball Committee and the Vancouver Branch for allowing me to take advantage of this wonderful opportunity.   We are not changing the admission price, the dance will be run the same as always but you and I are in for a real treat – not that Calanais aren’t wonderful but these musicians are professionals and have made a number of CD’s and are in great demand.   Plan to attend so mark your calendars and inform your friends.

Proofreading is a dying art, wouldn’t you say?

Cold Wave Linked to Temperatures

Enfield ( London ) Couple Slain; Police Suspect Homicide


A fun link – (especially for Grandparents and their grand kids!!)


I am 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.

Auld Country Tours who are a big supporter of our Ceildh Dances are offering a special promotion:
“We still have space on our Scotland tours that are departing in July of 2013.  Any members or participants of the RSCDS can enter the promo code “RSCDS” and I will give them a $500 discount on the tour price when they book.  This is good for us as we look to fill our empty spaces on the tours, but this is a very good price for anyone wanting to go too!”
James Johnson [auldcountrytours@gmail.com]

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

Needed: a goodly number of enthusiastic Scottish dancers for Vancouver’s Celtic Festival parade Sunday March 17th. Gathering: about 10 am on the Granville bridge/Howe Street.

Needed: Sturdy street shoes, visible tartan, warm clothes (rain resistant!)
Dance: a simple routine of dance steps we can practice while waiting for the 11 am start.

Please email ccmusic@telus.net to indicate your interest. Let’s show those Irish we can muster a good crowd too!



What a fun and interesting programme of dances we did last night at Burnaby.   When I first looked at the programme I said Oh! Oh! not many dances I know but although some were certainly unfamiliar they were not too difficult.   Thank goodness for the walkthroughs though!!   The VFO were all in tune and thanks to Jim were sounding just fine.   Janet has introduced some nice new sets.   As always the ladies of the club did themselves proud and there was a wonderful selection of sandwiches, fruit, veggies and loads of goodies.   Thanks to Rosemary, Cathrine, Diane & Elizabeth for briefing the dances and to all the members of the Burnaby club for being such great hosts.

Planning us well under way for the next Ceilidh Dance on March 22 when we will have Gordon Shand & his Band from Scotland playing.   The band is made up of Accordion, fiddle, keyboard and drums.   They may be bringing some of their CD’s for sale as well!   We have hired the Vancouver Fiddle Orchestra’s sound man Jim who will also do the sound for the Heather Ball the following night at the Gizeh Temple.  We will have to pay them a wee bit more than the pittance we pay Calanais who basically play for the love of the music.   We also have to rent sound equipment and pay a sound-man so we will have a lot more costs than usual.

We have kept the admission price the same in the hope that we can attract a huge crowd and that you will all be even more generous in your donations.   Now it is up to you all to help by planning on coming along on March 22 and bringing loads of friends, family, acquaintances, etc. so I will not have to report a loss.    Please do your best to spread the word.

There is another Ceilidh Dance on March 16 which is a fund raiser for breast cancer.   It is being held again at the Scottish Cultural Centre, 8886 Hudson Street, Vancouver with the Vancouver Fiddle Orchestra and yours truly doing the calling.   This is a very worthy cause so I hope many of you will come along.   Check the list of upcoming events for information on this Ceilidh and two other fund raisers as well as many other events.

Registration for Alasdair Fraser’s Fiddle Camps in California, Scotland and Spain are now open.   Try news@aladairfraser.com for info.

The Celtic Festival Vancouver parade is just 2 weeks away – March 17 – and we really need a big group to join us in representing Scottish Country and Ceilidh Dancing.   We will be marching and doing a very simple walking dance so please come along and join in the fun and show everyone what fun folk the “Scots” community are.   See info aboe highlighted in blue.

Some local budding teachers are taking classes which will allow them to become certified Scottish Country Dance teachers. It is a five part course and takes a few years to complete. Examiners come, perhaps from Scotland or other areas of North America. The local classes are taught by Mary Murray. Part of the training is learning to teach a class. So they need volunteers to make up a class. (For some reason these volunteers are called stooges.) If you are interested – it really is fun and educational – in volunteering to be a stooge please contact Jean Wagstaff at jeedwag@shaw.ca

Pat has asked me to make a plea for heather. She needs lots of different heather for the Heather Ball which is on March 23. If you have a source of heather please e-mail Pat at pcavers@shaw.ca as soon as possible and she will let you know when she would like it and where it should be delivered.


Tickets for Celtic Festival Vancouver are now on sale -Check out all the festival details at: https://www.celticfestvancouver.com/   There are some super events so it is well worth checking out.

Muted blue dress Stewart kilt 22 inches long, waist 36-40 inches, kilt pin included, – $150
Green heather tweed day jacket made in Scotland with elkhorn buttons size 38L – $60
Men’s sport coat in original Johnston tartan size 38L – $50
Black leather belt -no buckle-size 38 – $20
1 pr NEW men’s black dancing slippers size 8 1/2 – $10
Black cummerbund and bow-tie  – $5
Maroon cummerbund, bow tie and braces – $10

To view or for further information call: Joanne 604-521-8999

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

Hip, hip Hooray subscriptions are over the 400 mark at last. This newsletter will go out to 408 people in many cities, provinces & countries. Now my goal is to get to 500!! Please pass along the website to your friends and maybe they will subscribe – www.vancouverceilidh.org

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


There is a message from the 2013 Highland Games Committee that they are very much in need of volunteers for a variety of positions. Please contact Joan at jdrabyk@shaw.ca if you can help in any way.


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


Here are some quotes to inspire you….)

“There’s a way of transferring funds that is even faster than electronic banking. It’s called marriage.”
James Holt McGavran

Storr & the Old Man

Welsh flag

Events happening soon include the Tip a Wee Dram fund raiser on March 8, CeticFest Vancouver starts on the 9th and the White Rock workshop is on the 10th.
Note that tickets for the Heather Ball (to be held on March 23 in the Gizeh Temple with Gordon Shand and his Band) can be ordered and paid for online at www.rscdsvancouver.org
Please see “Coming Events” below for all information.

In Honour of Stupid People . . …
In case you needed further proof that the human race is doomed through stupidity, here are some actual label instructions on consumer goods.

On  a bar of Dial soap —
“Directions:  Use like regular soap.”
(and that would  be???….)

On  some Swanson frozen dinners —
“Serving suggestion: Defrost.”
(but,  it’s just a  suggestion.)


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 https://www.tac-rscds.org/



Mar  8 4th annual Tip a Wee Dram – a Whisky Tasting Fundraiser to conquer Cancer 7 — 10 p.m.  at the Scottish Cultural Centre, 8886 Hudson Street, Vancouver.   Tickets & info at www.tipaweedram.com
Mar  9 Bellingham monthly dance
Mar 9 – 16 CelticFest Vancouver 2013 — program guides are on the Street — pick one up to check everything out or go to:  https://www.celticfestvancouver.com/schedule-tickets/2013/?utm_source=Copy+of+Email+Created+2013%2F01%2F16%2C+12%3A44+PM&utm_campaign=cfv2013&utm_medium=email
Mar 13 Heather Ball dances being taught by Mary Murray in the Scottish Cultural Centre, 8886 Hudson Street, Vancouver 7:30 — 9:30 p.m. – $6
Mar 10 White Rock spring workshop with Maureen Lyon in Sullivan Hall, 6303 152nd Street, Surrey $10
Advanced class 9:30 a.m. to noon; Intermediate and Beginner dancers 1:00 to 3:30 p.m.
To register call or e-mail Laurie 604-944-6678
ljreel@telus.net or Gerda 604-531-4595 gerdab@shaw.ca
Mar 16 Ceilidh for Cancer with the Vancouver Fiddle Orchestra and caller Duncan MacKenzie.  7:00 p.m. at the Scottish Cultural Centre, 8886 Hudson Street, Vancouver  BC   Adults $25; students $15; children under 16 $10 — all proceeds to Breast Cancer Research.
Mar 16 Van Isle Workshop & Dance with Rebecca Blackhall-Peters and the Tartan Players.  Workshop $15; Dance $20 all info at www.viscds.ca
Mar 16 Seattle Theatre Group PRESENTS – DERVISH  with special guests Mary Jane Lamond and Wendy MacIsaac  in the Neptune Theatre (1303 NE 45th St)  Doors 7pm, Show 8pm, 21+, $30 (excl fees) For info e-mail:  clairec@stgpresents.org
With Irish music super-group Dervish heading the bill, and Cape Breton masters Mary Jane Lamond & Wendy MacIsaac opening the show, this promises to be one of the biggest Celtic music shows of the year!
Mar 17 Celtic Parade 
Needed: a goodly number of enthusiastic Scottish dancers for Vancouver’s CeltFest parade Sunday March 17th.  Gathering: about 10 am on the Granville bridge/Howe Street.   Wear: Sturdy street shoes, visible tartan, warm clothes (rain resistant!).   Dance: a simple routine of dance steps we can practice while waiting for the 11 am start.  Please email ccmusic@telus.net to indicate your interest. Let’s show those Irish we can muster a good crowd too!
Mar 20 Heather Ball dances being taught by Mary Murray in the Scottish Cultural Centre, 8886 Hudson Street, Vancouver 7:30 — 9:30 p.m. – $6
Mar 21 Heather Ball walk through in the Scottish Cultural Centre, 8886 Hudson Street, Vancouver 7:30 — 10:00 p.m. – $6
Mar 22 Ceilidh Dance with Gordon Shand & his Band from Scotland at the Scottish Cultural Centre — class at 7 dance 8 — 11 Admission $10 (students $8)
Mar 23 Heather Ball in the Gizeh Temple 3550 Wayburne Drive, Burnaby with Gordon Shand and his Band from Scotland
Tickets $85 from
www.rscdsvancouver.org or from your class rep.   Reception at 6 p.m. Dancing at 7 p.m.
Mar 30 Battlefield Band, St. James’ Hall, Vancouver.   Info & tickets www.roguefolk.bc.ca or 604-736-3022
Apr  6 Glenayre dance
Apr  6 A Finn-Tastic Ceilidh raising funds for pediatric cancer research.  7:30 — 11:30 p.m. in the Vancouver Rowing Club with the Mad Celts.   Tickets $45 (cash bar).   Info & tickets from Steve r-m-i@shaw.ca

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 March 8, 2013


1. The inherent vice of capitalism is the unequal sharing of the blessings. The inherent blessing of socialism is the equal sharing of misery.— Winston Churchill

2. The only difference between a tax man and a taxidermist is that the taxidermist leaves the skin.    — Mark Twain

3. The ultimate result of shielding men from the effects of folly is to fill the world with fools.   — Herbert Spencer, English Philosopher (1820-1903)


Sunset over Innellan

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

“He is simply a shiver looking for a spine to run up.” – Paul Keating

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

Quote of the day from my 5 year old granddaughter Zia who lives in London, UK. On latest topical news scandal of horse meat being found in numerous ready meals across the UK including those being served in schools and hospitals.
Mom, a vegetarian asks “Zia would you eat horse meat?”
Zia says “Not a whole one.”

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


The next Ceilidh Dance is Friday, March 22, 2013 and the Branch has allowed us to use the Gordon Shand Band who will be here to play at the Heather Ball the next night.    This is just fantastic and I hope you all thing so as well .   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.

Tain from Fendhorn

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


Tannoch Loch

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

It really is never too late to come along and join in one of many Scottish Country Dance (SCD) classes and well any time is a great time to do it. 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:
What does man love more than life
Fear more than death or mortal strife
What the poor have, the rich require,
and what contented men desire,
What the miser spends and the spendthrift saves
And all men carry to their graves?

Answer: Nothing

This week:
I build up castles.
I tear down mountains.
I make some men blind,
I help others to see.
What am I?


Tay Bridge

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, March 22, 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 —

March 22 – with live music by Gordon Shand & his Band from Scotland
April 26 – with performance by the Tam O’Shanter Dancers

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.

Tay sunset

Observations On Growing Older

~You have 3 sizes of clothes in your closet…. 2 of which you will never wear.

~~~But Old is good in some things: Old songs, Old movies, and best of all, OLD FRIENDS!!


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 408 subscribers (at long last we are over 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.

I have been in many places, but I’ve never been in Cahoots.  Apparently, you can’t go alone.  You have to be in Cahoots with someone.

I’ve also never been in Cognito.  I hear no one recognizes you there. 

I have, however, been in Sane.  They don’t have an airport; you have to be driven there.  I have made several trips there, thanks to my friends, family and work. 

I would like to go to Conclusions, but you have to jump, and I’m not too much on physical activity anymore. 

I have also been in Doubt.  That is a sad place to go, and I try not to visit there too often. 

I’ve been in Flexible, but only when it was very important to stand firm. 

Sometimes I’m in Capable, and I go there more often as I’m getting older. 

One of my favorite places to be is in Suspense!  It really gets the adrenalin flowing and pumps up the old heart!  At my age I need all the stimuli I can get!


Templeton’s Carpets, Glasgow Green

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

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

Duncan ceilidh@rscdsvancouver.org