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The Alabama Highland Games PDF Print E-mail

Alabama Highland Games

The Alabama Highland Games, Inc., is a not-for-profit 501c3 organization which promotes Scottish heritage, history, and culture through a variety of educational programs, including an annual one-day games event of traditional Scottish athletics, music, and dance performed in a friendly, family atmosphere and open to all people of all backgrounds.

The Alabama Highland Games, Inc. does not engage in any profit business or political activity. Its activities are supported by individual volunteers, affiliated Scottish organizations, the City of Montgomery, and corporate sponsors. Funds generated from
event ticket sales, participant fees, grants, and donations are used to offset expenses incurred in performing its annual games and other programs which are in keeping with the educational and cultural mission of the Alabama Highland Games, Inc.


Highland gatherings, or Highland Games as they are now called, have been held in Scotland since its earliest history. For nearly a thousand years, clansmen, chiefs, and competitors came from all over Scotland and banded together to compete against one another in what is often defined as one of the most rigorous forms of competition in the world.

Perhaps no sounds are more associated with Scotland than those of the pipes and drums. It is only fitting, then, that pipers and drummers display their skills in competition. But what makes a championship piper or drummer? Read on to learn more about the solo piping, solo drumming, and pipe band competitions.

Scottish men have tested their strength against each other at Highland gatherings for centuries. King Malcolm Ceanmore, who began his reign in 1057, is credited with initiating crude forms of today's Scottish Highland Games. He reputedly used strength and endurance competition among his warriors as a means of improving their fighting abilities.

Highland dances are usually exhibition dances performed by one or two people. They accent vitality, strength, fitness, and courage, all important characteristics of the Highland way of life. These ritual dances were originally meant to be done by men because of the great physical demands made upon the dancer. These are the same dances which centuries ago had the power to dispel the gloom of despair, poverty, and the oppression of everyday existence.

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