The Heather Ball was terrific  The hall was tastefully decorated and there was a good attendance.  From the welcome at the door to the drinks inside, from the cold cuts and salads (and desserts) to the amazing sound of the band, to the enjoyable programme of dances to the cider and shortbread at the end it all flowed seemingly without a glitch.  Thanks are due to Denise and her committee, to the band, to Rebecca for briefing the dances so clearly and t0 all others (including the caterers) who helped in any way to make it so enjoyable.  I even danced (!?!) every dance.

West End classSome of the West End class at the Heather Ball

There was o good turnout for the Ceilidh on Easter Friday.  With over 60 in attendance Alison & Louise gave them a great selection of dances and I even attempted to teach one.  They were all lively and fun dances and the evening flew by as we were enjoying ourselves.  It was great to meet new young folk and some may look in on the West End class on Tuesday.   Come again – I’ll see you at the end of April.

Spring - Bishopton - Copy



Don’t join dangerous cults: Practice safe sects


The newsletters will continue being irregular for a while – at least till my right side recovers from the stroke.  But the Ceilidh dances will continue thanks to all the support I receive.  The next Ceilidh Dance is next Friday, March 25.



Please save the date for the Centre for Scottish Studies’ annual Tartan Day lecture on Saturday April 9th from 2-5 p.m. at the SFU Harbour Centre room 7000.

The afternoon will feature:   Graeme Morton, Professor of Modern History and the Director of the Centre for Scottish Culture at the University of Dundee: “Tartan Day and William Wallace: A National Tale.”

Dr. Jennifer Scott Visiting Research Fellow, Dept. of English, SFU: “Middle Men: The (Mis)Adventures of John Galt’s Literary Circle in Upper Canada.”

With a performance by the Vancouver Gaelic Choir and student showcases.


See upcoming events list for a new Ladies Step Dance workshop on April 30.


Spring - Castle Hill Edinburgh - CopyCastle Hill, Edinburgh


The next regular Ceilidh Dance is Friday, April 29, 2016 and I hope you can come.  Remember if you have a group of 8 or more and you contact me no later than April 27 then everyone in your group will get a $1 discount.




Jean Wagstaff has asked if I would advertise the following


Kilt Jacket, Tweed Mixed Colours Chest Size 36 / Small. $30 obo.

1 Sporran, White imitation Fur $40. obo

For further information contact:
Jean Wagstaff jeedwag@shaw.ca 604-371-1939

I have just received notice of a Charlie Jacket for sale – 42″ for $50 – call Steve at 604-531-2627


Size 9 Ghillie brogues, used but in very good condition, $45.  Contact hugh.conings@gmail.com


Winter - BiggarBiggar





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

Celtic Fashions on E-Bay – go to https://www.CelticFashions.com


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.


Spring - Cromlix House, Stirling

Cromlix House, Stirling


Spring - Fox & Daffodil


The next Ceilidh Dance is Friday, April 29th, 2016.  That will be the last one for the season.  There is lots of time for you all to get yourselves and your friends organized to come along for another fun, filled evening. Come and dance, it is lots of fun.  

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!!


There is a concert on March 31 at Mansion at 7 p.m.  see Coming Events for details.


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.


You have no idea how good Gene Kelly was at Dancing until you watch this.  Look closely and notice these are not even shoe skates.  They are the kind we had as a kid and came with a skate key.  Amazing.  I wonder how many times he fell before perfecting this routine. This is fantastic. It is unbelievable. If you’ve ever roller-skated,  you will find this impossible to believe!!!   This fellow is really amazing!! He starts tap dancing about half way through.  I loved looking at the dresses and hats of the ladies and all the old cars. Notice also that almost all the ladies were wearing gloves  except at the end when folks were clapping.


Male strippers:


Well, if you like Josh Grobin’s version of this song; wait till you hear two young people sing this one……… enjoy.    Amazing stage presence for two small kids.

‘You Raise Me Up’ https://wimp.com/you-raise-me-up-talent-show/

A bit late for St. Patrick’s Day but what the heck:



The next Ceilidh Dance will be this Friday, April 29th, 2016.   Same time, same place, same price, 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.


easter rabbit balloon

You can help to get the subscriptions back up again. Thanks for all your support. Out of 346 the last  newsletter was opened by 222 or 64.3%.

What a great gift this newsletter would make (and it is free!!) Please pass along the website to your friends and ask them to subscribe. www.vancouverceilidh.org

Please keep opening the newsletter!! Any and all comments and suggestions are welcome.


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

Mar 30 White Rock St. Patrick’s party
Mar 31 Concert at Hycoft Mansion, 1489 McRae, Vancouver featuring Elspeth McVeigh, Voice and Mark Sullivan fiddler. 

7 p.m. tickets $20 from Eventbrite.   This is a prelude to a show at the Edinburgh Festival.   “Coming with hopes and expectations, new immigrants experienced longing and loss for family, friends and the land they left behind – also immense joy and optimism. The concert explores the music of Scotland and Northern Britain, brought to Canada by Scottish emigrants.”

Apr  2 Glenayre annual spring dance St. Laurence Church Hall, 825 St. Laurence, Coquitlam at 7:30 – $12
Apr  2 Vancouver Island March workshop & social
Apr  9 Children’s Easter party 2 – 4 p.m. Capilano Room, Harry Jerome Memorial Centre, 123 East 23rd Avenue’ North Vancouver.  Adults $5; Children free.
Apr  9 Bellingham social
Apr 11 Branch spring ceilidh – 7:30 – 10 p.m. in the Scottish Cultural Centre.  $6.50 drop in.
Apr 16 Deep Cove Dance at 7:30 p.m. in St. Catherine’s Church Hall, 1058 Ridgewood Drive, North Vancouver.  Music by Mary Ross – $15
Apr 16 Vancouver Island SCDS Spring Fling social
Apr 22 – 24 Winnipeg Annual Workshop and Ball – info: Joesdaughter&hotmail.com.  Teachers: Kay Munn & Betsy Brydon; Musician: Ron Krug.   www.rscdswinnipeg.ca
Apr 23 Nanaimo Spring Tea Dance
Apr 29 Ceilidh Dance at the Scottish Cultural Centre, 8886 Hudson Street, Vancouver – no partner or experience required – live music with Calanais – refreshments available – class from 7 – 8 p.m. followed by dance from 8 – 11 p.m. – all dances walked, talked and called – admission at the door $12 (students $10)
Apr 30 Ladies step Dance workshop with guest teacher Elizabeth Miller, Seattle.  1 – 4 pm in the Taiwanese Cultural Centre, 8853 Selkirk Street, Vancouver (1 block east of the SCC).  This will be a fun and energetic afternoon of Scottish Soft Shoe Step with great live music. All new dances – some previous dance experience required.  For further information and registration please contact the Registrar:  Barbara Campbell Mailing Address 1761 55th Street  Delta, BC   V4M 3K7  Email: barbara.campbell@vancouver.ca  (work)  b_campbell@dccnet.com (home)                                 Phone: 604 943 6344 (home)  Fee $25 Cheque payable to RSCDS Vancouver Branch (CAN $) and mailed to The Registrar  Or register on line  https://www.rscdsvancouver.org/home/step-dance-workshop/

There will be an evening party at the home of Kay Sutherland in North Vancouver for dancers and Guests.

Apr 30 Vernon SCD 20th Annual one day workshop and ceilidh at Paddlewheel Park, Vernon.  Info; Kathy kathdin@shaw.ca
May  1 White Rock Annual Spring Tea Dance with the Tartan Players.  4 pm (doors open at 3:30) in the Star of the Sea Hall, 15262 Pacific Avenue, White Rock – Tickets $25 from Paul to 604-536-7660
May 14 Bellingham social
May 20 – 22 Youth West weekend in All Pilgrims Church, 500 Broadway E., Seattle, Ceilidh, Classes and Ball.  Teachers; Rachel Pusey, Katherine Shearman. Sidney Deering, Mary Stevens-Zarich and Peter Zarich.  Musicians: Ryan & Cali McKasson.  Info:  ywwseattle@gmail.com  
May 29 Fort Langley Voyageurs Whiskey Tea Dance with music by Kathy Fraser-Collins (Ontario) and Judi Nicolson (Texas).


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.

Spring - Iona CathedralIona

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.

Dancing in the Park – Stanley that is – starts on Monday, June 20 at 7 p.m. and continues every week at the same time until August 15.
= = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = =

The next Ceilidh Dance is Friday, April 29, 2016 with live music by Calanaish.   This is the last dance of the year so everyone come along.

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 – $12 or $10 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.


easter banner

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 would be a wonderful time to come along and join in one of many Scottish Country Dance (SCD) classes. 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.St patrick's Day Dancers

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.

Classes are winding down for the season but it is never too late to come along and join in the fun. Check for location, start date and time at www.rscdsvancouver.org  Come and join us on Monday nights in Stanley Park (GWWP) at 7 p.m. starting June 20.

easter bunny basket

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 on the website. 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


Spring - Fyvie CastleFyvie Castle


Why does “fat chance” and “slim chance” mean the same thing?


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

Other announcements etc:
Seattle Branch
New Challenge Class season

1st Sunday of the month from 1 – 3 p.m. at University Heights, 5031 University Way N.E., Seattle, 98105 – Room 109

– info at www.rscds-seattle.org ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

The next regular monthly Ceilidh Dance will be held on Friday, April 29, 2016   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 8 or more and we can give them a discount!!!


We Really NEED YOUR HELP to advertise the Ceilidh Dances!!!! It only costs $12 ($10 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.

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 2016 shapes up as follows:
All on Fridays of course —

April 29
September 30
October 21
November 25

Come along and get some great exercise while also having lots of fun. We hope to have lots of new Ceilidh dancers. 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 would like to attract more young adults and students from Universities and all the colleges. Somehow we have to get word out to these students etc. 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 ($12 or $10 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.

Spring - GarliestonGarlieston

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.


 Spring - Great Glen way

Great Glen Way


This newsletter reaches out to some 347 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.



Spring - Kirk o Field Parish ChurchKirk-o-Field


Spring - Jedburgh AbbeyJedburgh Abbey

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

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

Duncan Mackenzie    ceilidh@rscdsvancouver.org