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RE: Grandfather Mt. Highland Games 2000

Hi Joe....since you asked, I'd be delighted to comment.  We absolutely had a
great time....and slept well after returning on Sunday night!

Your first question about the attendance:  I would not claim to be able to
estimate the size of the crowd...perhaps I can get some numbers.  The
estimate for the parade of tartans was over 1,000.  If that is an accurate
number (and with over 100 clans represented, it is certainly probable), the
total attendance would easily meet the 20,000 mark, in my opinion.  Saturday
was clearly the highest attendance for the games.

The athletic games and other competitions were exciting to watch/listen.
There were also 4 "Celtic Groves" this year featuring various styles of
music at each venue throughout each day.  These groves were neat with shade,
a nice breeze, families enjoying the entertainment, CD sales from the
entertainers, FOOD!, etc.  You can check the schedule and listen to them all
over a the 2-3 days!

Events were held at various locations in the evenings. For example, evening
events were held at Appalachian State University (Piping and then later
listen to the Alex Beaton & Friends entertainment at Broyhill Center), Lees
McRae College (Ceilidh in Hayes Auditorium and Scottish Country Dance Gala
at Williams Gymnasium) and Avery High School (Seven  Nations Celtic rock
concert at the stadium).  Friday night also featured the Celtic Jam at
Macrae Meadows (site for the games).  The evening consisted of each of the
bands doing 30 minute sets and the youngsters dancing in front of the stage
just in front of the Viewing stands.  Our two year old granddaughter, Kailey
and my wife Lynne are pictured in one of the albums that I posted at the
Celtic Jam.  Kailey had a blast and slept well (grin).  It was very
enjoyable listening to a variety of music and also learning from several of
the artist as they told the stories behind some of the selections.

Number and names of Clans?  There were over 100 clans
represented...approximately 175 tents, although some clans had two
tents....among them were: Sinclair, our cousins Clan Gunn, Donald, Douglas,
Fraser, Gordon, Hunter, Keith, Lindsay, Moffat, Montgomery, McAlister,
McArthur, MacDougall, MacDuff, MacIntyre, MacKay, Mac Kenzie, MacRae (and a
lot of other "Mac's"), Stewart, Sutherland, Wallace...and of course those
Campbells (haha!).  Anyone seriously interested in the entire list can send
me an email and I'll scan the program page.

Temp and elevation:  As I recall the temperature was around 80 degrees F
(27-28 C), with a light breeze and overcast for much of the time on
Saturday.  Sunday was sunny and a little warmer.  The night temps were
around 60 degrees F. (15-16 C)  When I returned to Greenville, SC it was
nearly 100 degrees F (27 C)...ouch!  The beauty of the games at MacRae
Meadows is that you can always go to one of the groves where it is in the
"natural" shade...also go to the vendor tents.  We were searching for long
sleeve "anything" in the evening at MacRae Meadows...but it was actually
pleasant to me.

Mosquitoes or flies??  Well, there was a mosquito or two... but not a real
problem.  I think that the breeze helped keep them away.  There were more
mosquitoes at the Jimmy Buffett concert in Atlanta, Ga this past Thursday!

I would definitely advise reserving accommodations far in advance.  I say
that but we didn't since we had conflicting schedules and didn't actually
clear the calendar to go until the day before we left.  We found
accommodations in surrounding towns...Boone, NC and others.  It really
depends on how far you want to drive.  We eventually found a motel about 4
miles away in Banner Elk, NC.  We had to rent a suite, but we wanted to stay
as near to Linville, NC as we could.  The motel advertised that it was air
conditioned by nature...actually it was very pleasant.  You only need a
place to sleep since there are so many activities during the "other" hours.

In Summary:
We certainly plan to return.  I am hopeful that next year I'll have my kilt,
etc.!  I have not been to many Highland Games so I can't really compare....I
believe that the GMHG are of a high quality and certainly well attended.  It
was at the GMHGs where we met Brad Sinclair Barker, our President of Clan
Sinclair, USA and his lovely wife, Sindy, two years ago; and we met Don
Sinclair, Eastern VP and Kevin Sinclair, NC Commissioner this year.  We
truly enjoyed the many events whether they were athletic, music or dancing.
The bands are of good quality and my daughter can listen to Seven Nations
(at a 'far away' grove) while I listen to Alex Beaton and Ed Miller.  The
Celtic Jam on Friday night was a big hit.  I would like to attend other
events next year, including the Scottish Country Dance Gala, etc.  I also
plan to cough up a few more $$'s and attend the Patron's events...we'll see
about that! haha!  The Worship service, Kirkin' O' the Tartans, the Parade
of Tartans....the massed pipe bands....well, they continue to give me
chills...even as I type this email.  I wouldn't miss the Ceilidh...what a
fun "family" time!  To listen, learn, participate....to experience!

Sorry for my rambling....oh, I'm not sure about the elevation...I'll take my
GPS next year.  hehe!

Cuz Mel
Commissioner, South Carolina
Clan Sinclair, USA

The Sinclair Group, Mel Sinclair, President
224 Bransfield Rd., Suite 100
Greenville, SC  29615
Tele. 864-268-3550; Fax 864-322-5646
Email: thesinclairgroup@home.com
Web http://members.home.net/thesinclairgroup

-----Original Message-----
From: owner-sinclair@matrix.net [mailto:owner-sinclair@matrix.net]On
Behalf Of Plumpett@aol.com
Sent: Friday, July 14, 2000 9:04 PM
To: sinclair@matrix.net
Subject: Re: Grandfather Mt. Highland Games 2000

Mel --

Since the list is so quiet , I thought that I would ask these questions
online and thus share your experience with everyone .

First , I understand that the Grandfather Mt. Highland Games have an
attendance of about 20,000 persons  ??

If so , that would be about double the attendance at the Colonial Games in
Fair Hill ,
 Maryland ( USA ) that claims 10,000 . Does that attendance number seem
reasonable for the Grandfather Mt. Highland Games  ??

Would you care to comment on the number and names of the clans formally
represented ??

What was the temperature and the elevation at the Game site ??

Were mosquitos or flies a problem ??

Did you stay overnight and were accomodations easy to obtain nearby ??

I have been considering taking my family there , perhaps next year , and was
intrigued by your enthusiastic desciption of the good times you experienced

Any other comments you would care to share would be most welcome .

Joe Greigg
Wilmington , Delaware(USA )
[ This is the Sinclair family discussion list, sinclair@mids.org
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