Happy St. Andrew’s Day


I was very worried on Friday night at 7 p.m. when there were only 2 people for the class before the Ceilidh Dance but it gradually filled up and we ended with more than 24 in the class and then over 50 at the dance.   It was still the smallest number for quite some time and it was not enough to cover our costs.   That means we need even more to come to the remaining Ceilidh Dances.   We still had a fun time and Louise did a super job teaching half the dances.   Thanks again to the 5 members of Calanaish and to Bonnie and Richard who faithfully turn up for every dance.   PLEASE MARK FRIDAY, January 9, 2015 on your calendars now and bring as many people as possible to the next Ceilidh Dance.

Fall - South UistSouth Uist


Forget Newton and Galileo. Here are the real laws of nature:  

 Law of Physical Surfaces-
The chances of an open-faced jam sandwich landing face down on a floor, are directly correlated to the newness and cost of the carpet or rug.  

Law of Logical Argument-
Anything is possible if you don’t know what you are talking about.  Brown’s

Law of Physical Appearance –
If the clothes fit, they’re ugly.


The next regular Ceilidh Dance is not until next year –
Friday January 9, 2015
– 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.   See below for more information.


Some really exciting news – thanks to some ground work by a student there is going to be a Scottish Country Dance class at SFU.   It will start on January 14, 2015 and be on Wednesday evenings from 7 – 9 p.m. in Forum Chambers.   Contact Louise at louisesteinw@gmail.com for more information and please tell all your student friends.

Fall - Strathaven



Hi All 

With the Holidays upon us I would like to share a personal experience with my family/friends about drinking and driving. 

 As you may know, some of us have been known to have brushes with the authorities from time to time on the way home after a “social session” out with friends.  Well a few days ago, I was out for an evening with friends and had several glasses of beer/cocktails.  Although I was feeling a little too jolly, I still had the sense to know that I may be slightly over the limit. That’s when I did something that I’ve never done before – I took a cab home.

Sure enough on the way home there was a police road block, but since it was a cab they waved it past.  I arrived home safely without incident.  This was a real surprise as I had never driven a cab before.  I don’t know where I got it and now that it’s in my garage, I don’t know what to do with it,  If anyone has any ideas please let me know.

 Happy Holidays to you all.

 Thistle flag


There is a need for an Editor for the White Cockade as Eleanor has indicated this will be her last year and there is also a need for someone to help with the Facebook page.


Thanks to Steve at the Celtic Treasure Chest there is now an online list of all the Celtic societies as well as a calendar of events:

List    https://www.celtictreasurechest.com/links/index.php

Calendar    https://www.celtictreasurechest.com/celticevents/index.php


There are Festive Season specials at The Celtic Treasure Chest’s two stores.  Check them out at www.celtictreasurechest.com

There is a sale of dance shoes – both ghillies and ballet slipperswww.avriel.com


Flag Scotland-01-june


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 – www.scottishculturalcentre.com .   The cost is only $10.

Any person may join USCS and Scottish Country & 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. We have just finished replacing the roof which was a major expense.  We have also just finishing painting and sprucing up the main hall and hope you all like what we have done.

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.   More information about these upgrades may be brought up at the Annual General Meeting on Wednesday, December 10 – 7:00 p.m. in the Centre.


 At the Gleneagles Fall dance, which was the tribute to John Drewry,  there were some interesting articles and pictures which Simon had put together.  He has kindly allowed me to use these in the newsletters so I will post one each week and hope you enjoy reading them.   This is week 2 in the series – you can view previous newsletters on the archives page on the website – www.vancouverceilidh.org

John Drewry JM6

John Drewry

John Drewry

Many of his titles reflect his affection for his adopted city of Aberdeen.  Bon Accord being the motto of the city.  Others often related to his travels to many countries around the world, where he would be invited to visit and teach.

 There are few dance occasions around the Scottish Dance world that will not include a Drewry dance on their party or ball programs. 

 John has certainly enriched our dancing pleasure with his beautiful and flowing patterns and compositions.

 They all hold an enjoyable challenge.

 John tells the story that, when seated at a ball beside a lady he did not know, he could hardly contain his laughter, when the next dance was announced, being one of his own, and the lady said,

“Oh no!  Not another “dreary” dance”.


Fall - Sunrise Lochee Park, Dundee

Lochee Park, Dundee


The next Ceilidh Dance is NEXY YEAR!!  Friday, January 9th, 2015.   I have tried an experiment and registered with Meetup and more than 20 people have now “joined” and many say they will come to the Ceilidh dance.  

Canada Day maple leaf line

Why I Like Retirement !!! 

Question: What do retirees call a long lunch? 
 Normal . 

Question: What is the best way to describe retirement? 
 The never-ending Coffee Break. 

Question: What’s the biggest advantage of going back to school as a retiree?  Answer: If you cut classes, no one calls your parents.


flag with teddy  

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 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: https://www.facebook.com/groups/451447541666799/


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

I think I’ll leave this one off my “bucket list”    Let me know if you want a ticket —–


NO idea how it was filmed, but it’s sure great to Watch !!!! enjoy



The next Ceilidh Dance will be held NEXT YEAR on Friday, January 9, 2015.    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.


Subscriptions are up by another two to 340.   At this rate it will take years before we get it back to 400 so I really need your help to get the subscriptions back up again.   Thanks for all your support.

Please pass along the website to your friends and ask them to subscribe – it is free!! www.vancouverceilidh.org   At time of writing this last week’s newsletter was opened by 214 subscribers or 63.3% 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.


Events happening in the immediate future include the Children’s & Family Christmas Party on Saturday the 6th; the Branch Christmas Ceilidh and the first Gleneagles Ball walk through on Monday the 8th.

Please see “Coming Events” below for all information.



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

Dec  6 Children’s & Family Christmas Party – Capilano Room, Harry Jerome Memorial Centre, 123 East 23rd Street, North Vancouver at 2 p.m.   Adults $5 (Children free) – call 604-922-4406 or e-mail delbrookdancers@yahoo.ca  for info
Dec   8 Branch Christmas Ceilidh in the Scottish Cultural Centre at 7:30 p.m.  —  $6 drop in
Dec   8 Gleneagles Ball walk through at 7:30 p.m. St. Catherine’s Church, 1058 Ridgewood Drive, North Vancouver
Dec  9 Glenayre Christmas Party in St Laurence Church Hall, 825 St Laurence Street, Coquitlam at 7:30 p.m.   $10
Dec 10 United Scottish Cultural Society – Annual General Meeting – 7 p.m. 8886 Hudson Street, VancouverWhite Rock last class for 2014 – bring Christmas treats & Food Bank items   7 p.m. in Sullivan Hall, 63rd & 152nd in Surrey
Dec 10 Gleneagles Ball walk through at 7:30 p.m. Braemar Elementary School, 3600 Mahon Avenue, North Vancouver.
Dec 13 The Inverglen Scottish Dancers present a Celtic Christmas Celebration at the Seniors Centre of the Kerrisdale Community Centre at 2 p.m.   Highland, Scottish Country and Step Dancing will be performed. Admission by donation. Tickets may be purchased for the Red & White Raffle, proceeds to the dancer’s costume fund.  We hope to see everyone out to support our up and coming young dancers.
Dec 13 Bellingham Christmas social 7:30 p.m. in YMCA, Bellingham – www.bellinghamscd.org
Dec 13 Irish Benevolent Fund An Irish Christmas SAVE THE DATE   St. James Hall 3214 West 10th. Ave. Featuring The Irish Wakers, The Eire Born Dancers and Special Guests Irishwakers@shaw.ca or 604-671-3365   Get your tickets early as last year was a sold out performance
Dec 14 Gleneagles 51st Annual Ball in the Pacific Ballroom, Fairmont Hotel Vancouver at 1:30 p.m. with music by the Vancouver Fiddle Orchestra.   Tickets $110 normhaug@shaw.ca or 604-984-7458
Dec 27 Betwixt & Between Social Dance 7:30 p.m. Scottish Cultural Centre, 8886 Hudson Street, Vancouver with music by Mary Ross.   FREE for all RSCDS members!   Others $15
Dec 31 Vancouver Island Scottish Country Dance Society potluck dinner & social —  viscds@shaw.ca or 250-598-0207

Life is back to normal – I think – with my wife back home and back on our time zone.   I have only been out in the garden to get the paper, mail and the car!!   I have done no laundry but I did iron a shirt and the vacuum has stayed in its cupboard.

It was Fort Langley’s St. Andrew’s Dance last Tuesday and, as always, it was a very enjoyable night.   Mary Ross played some lovely selections for the dances and the floor was filled with dancers all night.   There was a super attendance despite the very heavy rainfall and there were many beginner dancers from Glenayre, Deep Cove, West End and Fort Langley.   They were up for most of the dances too.   Rebecca and the Fort Langley Voyageurs are to be congratulated for a fun night and a great spread of food.

There was a large attendance for the Celebration of Ed Wigmore’s life on Saturday with many men in kilts and many other Scottish Country dances.   Ed certainly led a very varied and interesting life and was very well-respected in his profession.   Rest in Peace, Ed.

The Dem Team danced in the snow and cold at the German Christmas Market yesterday.   It was actually about 10 degrees warmer than last year when it was -14C but you could have fooled me as I was cold especially later when the sun was hidden behind a high-rise.   At least it was dry.   The stage is very small so it was quite cramped trying to dance but the Team put of two good shows and ended with audience participation.

Due to a prior engagement I was unable to attend the Delta Borderer’s dance last night but I am certain it was a big success and the music would have been terrific.

It was a good night, the Vancouver Fiddle Orchestra played well, the meal was very enjoyable and the Company congenial +++.

The Dem Team will be dancing at the Dundarave Festival of Lights in West Vancouver at 1 p.m. on Saturday, December 13.

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

Fall - Sunrise over Carrbridge

Sunrise over Carrbridge


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.

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

Fall - sunset over Moray

Sunset over Moray


The next Ceilidh Dance is not until next year – Friday, January 9, 2015 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: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0MvUwZnY9Ms and here is a link to the Facebook advert: https://www.facebook.com/events/597360563665264/597360566998597/ 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.

They are all held at the Scottish Cultural Centre, 8886 Hudson Street, Vancouver.  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.


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

This is a really good time to come along and join in one of many Scottish Country Dance (SCD) classes as they will be starting up again in the New Year.    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 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 (much better and lots more fun than golf!!) and 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).


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


Wish I’d Said That!

You know you’re a redneck if your home has wheels and your car doesn’t.
~ Jeff Foxworthy

When a man opens a car door for his wife, it’s either a new car or a new wife.
~ Prince Philip

Well I was brought up to hold the car door for my passengers and I have neither a new wife nor a new car!!


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, January 9, 2015 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!!!

St Andrews 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 https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Bh2HV3OPBgw or the Face-book page https://www.facebook.com/p.php?i=116203315&k=Z5C5Y4TZPT6G6BD1PKZZTWQQQ6BAW26L34AV&oid=164741310207760 https://www.facebook.com/events/597360563665264/597360566998597/ 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.

thistle celtic5blankbutton

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 2014/15 season shapes up as follows: All on Fridays of course —

January 9
February 6
February 27
March 27
April 24

Come along and get some great exercise while also having lots of fun. We hope to have lots of new Ceilidh dancers and we might even have Louise to help with the calling.  Remember to bring your smiles and wear flat shoes.    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 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 – 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.



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 340 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.


A couple was Christmas shopping at the mall on Christmas Eve and the mall was packed. As the wife walked through the mall she was surprised to look up and see her husband was nowhere around. She was quite upset because they had a lot to do. Because she was so worried, she called him on her mobile phone to ask him where he was. In a calm voice, the husband said, “Honey, you remember the jewelry store we went into about 5 years ago where you fell in love with that diamond necklace that we could not afford and I told you that I would get it for you one day?” The wife choked up and started to cry and said, “Yes, I remember that jewelry store.” He said, “Well, I’m in the bar right next to it.”


Fall - sunset over the Ochils

Sunset over the Ochills


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 – www.vancouverceilidh.org

Fall - Waverley Station

Waverley Station

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

DUNCAN   ceilidh@rscdsvancouver.org