Kootenai Highland Gathering and Celtic Games next weekend

Left To Right: Tammy Blackburn, Angie McLaury, and Dee Teske of the Celtic Games and Kootenai Highland Gathering Planning Committee. Photo by Brian Baxter, The Montanian.


By Brian

Patrick Baxter


Once again, the Libby area is proud and privileged to welcome a festival of Celtic heritage out along our beautiful Kootenai River at the River Bend Restaurant field on Friday and Saturday, July 19 and 20.

The term Celtic refers to the peoples including the Brythonic, which are the Welsh, Cornish, and Bretons, and the Gaelic which include peoples from Ireland, Scotland, and the Manx, from the Island of Man. One certainly does not have to be Celtic to attend, but a look into genealogy, or the study of family pedigree and lineage can sure reveal a treasure chest of information. The definition of Highlanders is a Gael, or person from the Scottish Highlands.

Edinburgh Castle in Scotland has been occupied by humans since the Iron Age, 2nd Century, A.D., and the historic fortress dominates the skyline of the city of Edinburgh from it’s point on Castle Rock. A royal castle has occupied the rock since the reign of David the 1st in the 12th century. Statues of William Wallace and Robert the Bruce were added to the gate house entrance in 1929.

William Wallace (born 1270) is one of Scotland’s heroes and leader of the Scottish resistance forces during the early years of the long and successful struggle to free Scotland from England’s dominance. He was portrayed by Mel Gibson in the 1995 movie Braveheart. Robert the Bruce (born July 11,  1274) is credited with freeing Scotland from English rule at the Battle of Bannockburn in 1314.

The Rock of Cashel (1100 A.D.) is an ancient royal site in Ireland and historic fortress with origins of power that date back to the 3rd or 4th centuries. Legend has it that Saint Patrick arrived in Cashel in A.D. 432 and baptized King Aengus who became Ireland’s first Christian ruler. Brian Boru, was crowned High King at Cashel in 990. King Brian is credited as the only king who was able to unite all the clans of Ireland under one ruler for any significant period of time.