The Cèilidh at Ayr, celebrating the Kirkland family’s Scottish heritage, was held on Saturday, October 21st at Ayr Mount. The crowd of over 450 people enjoyed a day of music, friendship, crisp autumnal weather, and Scottish stories.
Piobadh na Triantan (Gaelic for Piping in the Triangle) opened the festival with their rousing bagpipes filling the autumn air. John Saxon and Evelyn Judson piped during the mid-day session and explained how the bagpipe works plus a bit about the history of the instrument.
Interspersed with the bagpipes were two Celtic bands. Hailing from Alabama, Chambless & Muse (comprised of Jil Chambless and Scooter Muse) performed music of Scotland, Ireland and early America. Jil’s superb voice and lilting flute were the perfect complement to Scooter’s guitar. They were a big hit with the crowd.
Thistledown Tinkers, based in the North Carolina mountains (featuring Trip Rogers and Tom Eure) had a foot stomping Celtic sound. Their energetic combination of guitar, fiddle, mandolin, banjo, dulcimer, concertina and voice created Celtic music sounds both new and old. John Saxon closed the day with a session of piping and ended with the always crowd pleasing Amazing Grace.
Rounding out the day of music was – of course – delicious fish ‘n chips with malt vinegar as well as other yummy treats from the food trucks. The Wee Bairns area was a big hit with the younger participants where children could play games, dress up like a princess or knight, slay a dragon, pet the sheep or make crafts.
And the Loch Ayr Monster did make an appearance for the festival but has submerged himself to be seen – hopefully – at another time.