Cobourg Highland Games Seeks Volunteers

The Robert Burns Supper January 18th, 2014

Join us this year for a Dinner, Scottish Entertainment by the Macklin Academy of Dance, Cobourg Legion Pipe Band and a Dance with The Royals Dance Band and a Silent Auction to support the Cobourg Highland Games Society for the 2014 Highland Games.

The Supper and Dance will be held at The Cobourg Best Western Ballroom 930 Burnham St. Cobourg

The Cost this Year

  • Adults $50.00
    includes Dinner, Dance, Light lunch and Tax Receipt
  • Children (3 to 10) $15.00
    includes Dinner, Dance, Light lunch
  • Children under 3 Free
  • Dance - $20.00 ($25 at the door)
    includes Light lunch

Dance will be starting at approximately 9pm

The Royals Dance Band

Made up of musicians in the concert band, and led by trombonist Bill Crawford, the group was started in the early 1980s with the objective of providing an opportunity for musicians to play the music of the big-band swing era.

Comprising of the traditional five saxes, four trumpets, four trombones, three rhythm and a vocalist, "The Royals" has kept the swing classics of Miller, Goodman, Basie, etc alive in the Cobourg area through its own regular series of dances, and playing at other balls throughout Eastern Ontario.

With its present vocalist Tanya Wills, it also specializes in performing the great ballads of the likes of Gershwin, Porter, Berlin etc.

Some Highlights from the 2014 Robert Burns Dinner at Victoria Hall

The dinner was delicious Robert Burns dinner photo
Dancers from the Macklin School of Dance Dancers from the Macklin School of Dance
Piping in the haggis Piping in the haggis
Toasting The Haggis Toasting The Haggis
The Guest of Honour The guest of honour

So What's The Story on Robert Burns?

Robert Burns was born January 25, 1759, in a two-roomed cottage in Alloway, Ayrshire, the south west of Scotland. He was the eldest child of Agnes Broun and William Burns, a poor and simple farmer but a progressive fellow, who was determined to have his children educated. Robert worked with his father, first one farm and then another until, in 1784, his father died and the son moved the family to yet another farm. At the age of 15, Robert wrote his first poem but it was not until after his father's death that he began to write seriously. His career as a writer did not really begin until 1787 and lasted until his death in July 1796 at the young age of 37 years.

So what is it about this lad, often referred to as a bard, who inspires hundreds of thousands of people the world over to host a dinner in his honour every year? And what the heck is a bard anyway? And what did he write about that was so blessed wonderful? Well, to begin, a bard in ancient times, was an officer of the Druid class who had the responsibility of memorizing and putting to verse the 2000 year old genealogies of the royal family, or perhaps to record in his memory the events of great battles; for some the task of the history of the whole nation: All the great and accurate detail. So did young Robert do all or any of this? No, in the main, hardly at all. So then what was his claim ta fame?

Well you might blush a bit but Robert wrote about the little things in Scottish life in a unique style. Things like turning up a mouse's nest whilst plowing a field; things like the pretty legs and the lovely kisses of the local lasses; a drunken farmer's wild imagination of witches, known for haunting a derelict kirk and kirkyard, who chase him most of the way home and grab his horses tail as he crosses the last clackety clack bridge. Aye; real important stuff. At times Burns stretches himself to mention a few historical notes such as found in "Caledonia" but this has more of a legendary quality than any mention of historical fact. And then he goes on about such things as a winter day, a water-fall, a hen pecked husband, a death, and so on. Drivel; just pure drivel. So again I ask, since the question is more important than the answer: " What makes this man a legend?

Well: here's the thing of it. It's no' the words o' Robert Burns that contain the answer to his greatness. It's what he wrote between the lines that says it all. And what he says there is a description of those most intimate bits and pieces that make Scots, Scots. So now ya have a sense o' the thing but if'n ya want ta ken sa' more; come celebrate Robert Burns Night with us. Enjoy with us as we dance around the subject o' wha t'is ta be Scots, and, like the reek of fresh roast haggis freshly ripped apart; ye may get a whiff and a taste, to be sure, o' that curious ancient something of the Scottish Gael. And ye'll be back again next year for another whiff and a wee taste wunt'ya?

In Canada, a nation built by Scots and whose very bones are Scottish, where the hand of the Scots can be seen on nearly every page of its history, where Scots carved out new lives from the gloomy woods by strength of heart and hand, we remember and celebrate the life of Robert Burns because he has seared our identity and our origins into our hearts. Though generations have passed, we are a people with long memories, and neither borders, nor seas, nor time itself will deny us our proud Highland heritage.

So this January, don your plaid and come to Cobourg for Robert Burns Night and raise a dram to our Robert.