canada day jamming

This has turned out to be a lovely day and summer must have begun as our grandchildren and parents are starting to arrive from around the globe.   The Hong Kong contingent (minus father who will come in 10 days or so) actually arrived last Monday but the spent the first four nights with other family so when they came here on Friday they were mostly over their jet lag.  One other granddaughter arrived from Provence on Friday and our daughter arrived from LA today.   Still a few more to come but the house is already buzzing!!

My two little ones who live in Hong Kong were a big help at the Taiwanese Canadian Cultural Society’s (TCCS) Marpole Festival of Dance held at the Scottish Cultural Centre yesterday.   I had the honour of welcoming everyone on behalf of the USCS and Taryn and Callum welcomed everyone in Mandarin to great applause.   They had tried, very unsuccessfully, to teach me.

The TCCS put a lot of work and planning into their 2nd bi-annual Dance festival and called this year’s show ABUNDance.  There were afternoon short performances and workshops while in the evening there was a gala show featuring many different performers from many different countries.   Scottish Country dancing was presented by members of the Demonstration Team both in the afternoon and the evening and from the applause were well received.  They used the afternoon session to teach members of the audience 2 fun dances and we had 24 dancers on the floor for each.   You can see below that the evening team had some fun at their walk through!!

Dem belly photo (5)


Please do not forget to join in the fun of marching/dancing in the Canada Day parade in    downtown Vancouver at 7 p.m. on July 1.    Come and support the Scottish Country and Ceilidh Dance entry.  Call or e-mail Cathrine at 604-299-6447 or

Canada Day beaver


The next regular Ceilidh Dance is not until Friday, September 26, 2014 – in the Scottish Cultural Centre, 8886 Hudson Street, Vancouver. Start to make plans to come along as we really need all of you. This is a fun and inexpensive way to have an enjoyable evening out with family and friends. Tell at least 2 friends to join you, forward this e-mail to more friends and encourage them to sign up for the newsletter and to come to the Ceilidh Dance. Think of the great exercise you get as well.


Summer - Anstuther Harbour


Note a new series of classes on various nights over the summer – Summer fun for experienced dancers at Harmsworth Hall, 7070 – 232nd Street, Langley from 7:30 – 10:00 p.m. Drop in fee $5 info from Diane or 604-533-0023


canadian flag & map



Summer - Ardroil & Suaineabhal, Lewis
Ardroil Suaineabhal, Lewis

!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! Punography

I didn’t like my beard at first. Then it grew on me.


Summer - climbing Ben Lawers

climbing Ben Lawers

An article in a recent edition of the National Post is applicable to the Ball and to Scottish Country Dancing in general. Check out Thanks Gill for the tip. ===========================================================

canada flag 5


Summer - Culross




Summer - Dunfermline City Chambers


For the 60th anniversary of the White Rock club members made table centrepieces representing different dances. Some of you might not have seen these works of art. They are all available, along with other photos, on the club website at under the tab photos & slide shows then under 2014 and 60th Ball centrepieces.


canada day fireworks



Never shuck corn again. Cut an inch off the wide end and the corn slips right out…no silks! 

Add this item to your beach bag. Baby powder gets sand off your skin easily
–who knew?!

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Summer - Highlad Cow Loch Venacher

Loch Venacher

The Scottish Cultural Centre is a pretty unique and wonderful asset and space is available for rent to anyone or any group. The Centre does not run itself but is actually run by the United Scottish Cultural Society (USCS). Memberships in this Society are for individuals only and presently cost $10 annually. Membership Application Forms may be obtained either at the Centre or on the USCS website – .

Any person may join USCS and Scottish Ceilidh Dancers are encouraged to show their support by doing so. If any USCS member would like to be more involved, then, Darryl Carracher, the Manager at the Centre, will be pleased to give you further information. At the present time we are in the middle of replacing the roof which is a major expense. It is expected it will take at least another week to complete this large project. We also plan to paint and spruce up the main hall but that will not take place until September.

Upgrades to the Centre are also being considered so it is particularly appropriate that dancers join USCS. No final decisions on these upgrades will be made before Members of USCS are fully informed.


After meeting family at the airport I picked two other dancers up and headed for Stanley Park despite the raindrops that were falling.   It was tartan night with Rebecca and the Fort Langley club as hosts.   The equipment was sheltered under plastic (why don’t we borrow one of the pop up tents from the USCS?) and we managed about  2/3 of the programme before it got too wet to continue.   Even though the weather was not good there was quite a good turn out of dancers but not too many in the audience but those who did come were enthusiastic.

Wednesday I was part of a White Rock SCDC group which travelled to North Vancouver where we performed for about 800 Ishmaels and we were well received.   Then it was over to the USCS where there was a meeting with the TCCS regarding the ABUNDance Festival.

Friday was back to the airport but in the other days etc. I power washed about half of our back parking area so I did do some work.   We have been having very late nights as we watch the recorded World Cup games and now there is Wimbledon as well.   With the family here I am 2 days behind in viewing so need to finish and get this on its way so I can watch 2 or 3 games.   Tomorrow is the start of Swim, Synchro and Tennis lessons so I will be up and down to the beach on a regular basis from now on.


                  Canada Day maple leaf


The next Ceilidh Dance is not until Friday, September 26th, 2014 but you can dance every Monday evening, weather permitting, come down to Ceperley Park in Stanley Park near 2nd Beach.   THIS MONDAY, June 23 from 7 – 9 p.m. and the theme is “Tartan Night.”  Wear something tartan especially if you have a kilt.    If it is wet at 5 p.m. the dancing will be cancelled but you can call 604-922-6842 or 604-224-6751 or try or .

Canada Day maple leaf line

Dancing in the Park is FREE!!! and no partner or experience necessary – just bring your smiles and I would suggest flat, comfy shoes. Check the Coming Events listing as there is a theme for each night so join in the fun.

Summer - Kelvingrove Park

Kelvingrove Park

Michelle has very kindly made up a Facebook event page for the Ceilidh but you need to “Search for Vancouver Ceilidh on Facebook and “Like” us to receive updates on upcoming Ceilidhs and other events”. Then, if you “Like” the Vancouver Ceilidh FB page (do as described above), you too will receive updates AND be able to share those updates and events on your personal Facebook page to your friends and ask that they “Like” and “Share”, etc.

Ceilidh Dances are great ways to celebrate birthdays, anniversaries etc. Invite all your friends to come and join you at the Ceilidh. You are welcome to bring your own cake and we’ll even sing for you!!


You can join 117 or more on the e-mail list of the SFU Scottish and Celtic Society; the club connecting you to all things Scottish and Celtic at SFU and the community. As members of this mailing list, you will receive updates on events and learning opportunities. All are welcome to participate and enjoy. Facebook Group: As of today, our new Facebook Group is launched and available to join. It is an ‘Open’ group. Anyone can join and invite their friends. We will create Facebook ‘Events’ for all our occasions. Join today at this link:


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 The link for the pictures is:


Thanks for the tips on how to get pictures etc. from my e-mails to the newsletter. I have downloaded Irfan View which seems to work very well


Summer - Kippen view to Carse of Stirling

Kippen – view to the Carse of Gowrie

Some fun and interesting sites: – note if you have a link to something you think others would enjoy please forward them to me.

On the 700th anniversary of the Battle of Bannockburn, here are some things you maybe didn’t know about the historic event.


A few 10 second videos


 Canada Flag





Summer - Laburnam walk in Kincardine Castle

Laburnam Walk, Kincardine Castle

The next Ceilidh Dance will be held on Friday, September 26, 2014. Same time, same place, same price (so long as there is a big attendance), same amount of fun and entertainment. Now it is up to you all to help by planning on coming along and bringing loads of friends, family, acquaintances, etc. We need to improve the attendance to make the dances financially viable. Please do your best to spread the word. Let me know if you would like a poster to put up.


“Without  question, the greatest invention in the history of mankind is  beer.  Oh, I grant you that the wheel was also a fine invention, but the wheel does not go nearly as well with  pizza.”

Dave  Barry


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


Subscriptions drooped by one this week so this newsletter will go out to 393 people in many cities, provinces & countries. This is, tantalizingly, only 7 short of my goal to get back to 400.

Can you help to find these 7 people to make my total? If only everyone who says they will sign up (including relatives!) would do so we would be there. Please pass along the website to your friends and ask them to subscribe – it is free!! At time of writing this last week’s newsletter which was not sent out until Thursday was opened by 214 subscribers or 54.3% of the total list.   I know some of you prefer to go to the website and open the newsletter from there so the number is probably much higher. Please keep opening the newsletter!!

Any and all comments and suggestions are welcome.


An online contact for dance and marching shoes (ghillies, pumps, brogues, etc.) is Bruce Griffith at


Events happening in the immediate future include Dancing in the Park tomorrow (Monday night) and the Canada Day Parade.   Please see “Coming Events” below for all information.

Dance - blue


Summer - Mealasta Island

Mealasta Island


If anyone has any suggestions or complaints regarding the newsletter, please let me know – Please do not complain to your server that this is junk mail. There is a link on the e-mail should you wish to unsubscribe.

COMING EVENTS IN THE NEXT FEW WEEKS: Note: Please check list of classes for all start times and locations.

Jun 30 Dancing in the Park hosted by the Deep Cove Club – come celebrate the eve of Canada Day wear red & white!
Jul  1 Canada Day Parade downtown Vancouver at 7 p.m.  Come and support the Scottish Country and Ceilidh Dance entry.  Call or e-mail Cathrine at 604-299-6447 or
Jul  5 The Penticton Scottish Festival Society.    We are very pleased to announce that we will be hosting the First Annual Scottish Festival and Highland Games.   This one day event will celebrate Celtic culture with Bagpiping and Drumming, Highland Dancing, and Heavy Events competitions along with other activities that will include entertainment, children’s activities, Clan information, clothing and equipment booths, food vendors, tastings, and fun for the whole family.
Jul  7 Dancing in the Park hosted by the Glenayre Club with a special performance
Jul  9 Summer fun for experienced dancers at Harmsworth Hall, 7070 – 232nd Street, Langley from 7:30 – 10:00 p.m. Drop in fee $5 info from Diane or 604-533-0023
Jul 14 Dancing in the Park GALA NIGHT hosted by the Branch with entertainment by the Vancouver Police Pipe Band which is celebrating their 100th anniversary fresh home from their visit to Her Majesty in London as well as the Branch Demonstration Team
Jul 21 Dancing in the Park hosted by the Delta Borderer’s – music, music, music
Jul 27 – Aug 3 TAC Summer School – Greeley, Colorado with Candidates classes.   This is a workshop for all dancers of all levels.   Teaching staff: Helen Russell, Marjorie MacLaughlin, Graham Donald, Keith Bark & Tim Wilson Incredible music by: Marian Anderson, Keith Smith, Isobelle Hodgson, Judi Nicolson, Max Ketchin, Graham Bell & Steve Carcary.   Registration forms now available with all information at

““““““““““““““““““““““““““““““““““““` “ 

The Washington Post’s Style Invitational also asked readers to take any word from the dictionary, alter it by adding, subtracting, or changing one letter, and supply a new definition.

 Here are this year’s winners:

 Cashtration (n.): The act of buying a house, which renders the subject financially impotent for an indefinite period.  

Giraffiti (n): Vandalism spray-painted very, very high.


 Summer - north-queensferry-lower-village-harbour

North Queensferry

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Come Scottish Country Dancing – it is lots of fun.  Just ask anyone who came along to the Dancing in the Park. We had great audience participation so I hope you will all come along and join one of our great classes or at least come to one of the Ceilidh Dances.

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Summer - Pittenweem garden


The next Ceilidh Dance is not until Friday, September 26, 2014 with live music by Calanaish. You still have 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: and here is a link to the Facebook advert: 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.


For those who enjoy listening to Scottish music, song, banter etc. try 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


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

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 GIVE IT A GO! Go to either or www, for a list of class locations and times.

Canada Flag blue sky


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 learn the basics 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 is also a Branch in Seattle).

Canada flag 4

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 or 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 –

!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! St patrick's Day Dancers===========================================================

For upcoming events see and Other announcements etc: Seattle Branch – info at


The next regular monthly Ceilidh Dance will be held on Friday, September 26, 2014 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!!!

Canada Flag

We Really NEED YOUR HELP to advertise the Ceilidh Dances!!!! It only costs $10 ($8 for students) – 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 or the Face-book page Suggestions to improve our advertising are always welcome. Don’t forget to tell them about the website and get them to “subscribe” to the newsletter.

Canada flag 3

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 of 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 2013/14 season shapes up as follows: All on Fridays of course —

September 26
October 24
November 28
January 9
February 6
February 27
March 27
April 24

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.

Fireworks on Loch Shin

We need to attract students from Universities and all colleges. 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 – – 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 – – 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

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

Summer - Portnakaven, Islay


Keep sending jokes, pictures and info you wish to have included. Don’t forget to look at our web pages at    If you know of anyone who would like to be on the mailing list please send them the web address – 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 393 subscribers 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.


Mother Superior called all the nuns together and said to them, ‘I must tell you all something. We have a case of gonorrhea in the convent.’  ‘Thank God,’ said an elderly nun at the back. ‘I’m so tired of chardonay.’

A wife was making a breakfast of fried eggs for her husband. Suddenly, her husband burst into the kitchen. ‘Careful,’ he said, ‘CAREFUL! Put in some more butter! Oh my gosh! You’re cooking too many at once. TOO MANY! Turn them! TURN THEM NOW! We need more butter. Oh my gosh! WHERE are we going to get MORE BUTTER? They’re going to STICK! Careful. CAREFUL! I said be CAREFUL! You NEVER listen to me when you’re cooking! Never! Turn them! Hurry up! Are you CRAZY? Have you LOST your mind? Don’t forget to salt them. You know you always forget to salt them. Use the! salt. USE THE SALT! THE SALT!’ The wife stared at him. ‘What in the world is wrong with you? You think I don’t know how to fry a couple of eggs?’ The husband calmly replied, ‘I just wanted to show you what it feels like when I’m driving.’


Enjoy yourselves – come Scottish Country Dancing – for it is good for your health and you never know you just might …..! See Coming Events on the website for info –

Summer - Pricess Street Edinburgh

Princess Street

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