Friday, December 28, 2007

Burns Night

The Fredericksburg Scottish Society will be hosting on Saturday, January 26, 2008, Burns' Night to commemorate the 207th Birthday of Robert Burns. It starts at 6 PM at the Fredericksburg Country Club. The cost is $25 before 1/11 and $35 afterwards. The cutoff is 1/21. Checks should be made to the Fredericksburg Scottish Society and mailed to Myra Wiggins 70 Briarwood Drive Fredericksburg, VA 22405. For more information contact Myra at

Thursday, November 29, 2007

Fredericksburg Christmas Parade on Saturday, 12/1

Arvil sent the following email to the Celtic Societies of Fredericksburg:

I'm sending this info on the Christmas Parade to as many members of the Scottish Society, past and present, who might be interested and free to walk in the parade on Saturday, December 1. We are walking under the umbrella name of the "Celtic Societies" which is to say that some members of the Welsh and Hibernian societies will be joining us.

We are in Division 1, and number 12 in the lineup, which means we are near the beginning of the parade. Division 1 assembles on Charlotte St. between Caroline St. and Princess Anne St. (near the Visitor Center). We are behind Spirit Keepers Therapy Dogs and in front of Boy Scout Pack 330.

The Parade starts at 5:30pm so it would be good to aim for being in place at 5pm. It will be very busy with people, and parking is something you'll have to work out well ahead of time.

Happy Holidays!

Sunday, November 4, 2007

Kilt Night 11/10 at Colonial Tavern

Just learned this evening that the Celtic band Seven Nations will be in Fredericksburg next Saturday night at the Colonial Tavern. I’ve ‘summoned’ a kilt night. Check this post on X Marks.

Richmond Highland Games Report

Last weekend was the Richmond Highland Games and Celtic Festival. I managed to get there Saturday afternoon. I had an enjoyable time. Click this link to see my posts on X Marks the Scot.

Below Jerry Hamilton of the Fredericksburg Scottish Society warms the Haggis at the Stewart Clan tent.

Friday, October 19, 2007

Goodbye, Friend!

In a post below is Don Mcleay’s obituary that was published today in the Free Lance Star. Don was chief of the Fredericksburg Scottish Society. I had gotten to know Don this year. I knew his daughter Cynthia from my time affiliated with the Episcopal Church for a several years before. She would tell me about her Dad every time she saw me in a kilt or when I was talking about Scotland.

Don was a quiet and unassuming type of guy. He went about getting things done in sure and thoughtful way. At a meeting of the Scottish Society this week I learned how Don had given much to that group. He will be sorely missed by them.

Don shared his spiritual walk with me. I have many similarities to what Don had experienced. Both affiliated with religion in our cases Episcopalian. In dramatic ways both becoming ‘born again’ and developing a personal relationship with Jesus. Both would be part of the charismatic movement in the Episcopal Church. Both would be the senior warden (lay leader) of the same church (same priest) just different times.

I said goodbye to Don two weeks this upcoming Sunday. I knew the next time would I see him would be the other side of eternity. Till I get home, Don. See you, friend.

Goodbye, friend

Donald Lachlan Macleay, 72, of Fredericksburg, died Monday, Oct. 15, 2007, at his home from pancreatic cancer. He valued being a Christian, a husband, a father and grandfather, and a friend.
Born in Washington, D.C., on Oct. 27, 1934, Don was raised in Falls Church. He attained the rank of Eagle Scout and graduated at the top of the first class of St. Stephen's School in 1952. In 1956, he graduated with a Bachelor of Arts degree in English from the Virginia Military Institute.
After serving as a U.S. Marine Corps officer, Don spent many years in the business world before becoming a parole officer for the Department of Juvenile Justice in Stafford County. In 1992 he was a candidate for the U.S. Congress as an Independent.
Don had a love for Scotland and its history. He made several trips to Scotland to connect with his family heritage and enjoyed meeting his long-lost cousins. For the last few years, he had been working on a novel about 13th century Scotland.
Along with history, Donald cared for the community. He was active in many organizations including serving as vice president of the Clan Stewart Society of America; coordinator of the Burns Night Dinners for the Fredericksburg Scottish Society; longtime member of Tough Love; and a member of the Fraternal Order of Eagles, the Moose Lodge, and the Brotherhood of St. Andrew.
Don served on the Fredericksburg Mayor's Early Intervention Task Force. Most recently he was recognized by the Chaplin Youth Center for his speaking and service.
Don Macleay is survived by his wife of 34 years, Astrid; his children, Don Macleay of Oakland, Ca., Malcolm Macleay and his wife, Tina, of Fredericksburg, Cynthia Macleay Campbell and her husband, Jeff, of Columbia, Md., Anita Mesimer of Fredericksburg, Swantje Crane and her husband, Craig, of Vienna, Mo., and Alexander Macleay of Fredericksburg; 11 grandchildren, his brother, Murdo Macleay; his sister, Linda Dewell and a cousin, Archie Macleay, in Scotland.
A memorial service will be held at 3 p.m. Sunday, Oct. 21, at Tower of Deliverance Church, 1808 Princess Anne St., Fredericksburg. Scottish attire is encouraged.
Memorial contributions may be made to Chaplin Youth Center, Box 8208, Fredericksburg, Va. 22404.
Date published: 10/19/2007

Sunday, September 30, 2007

Williamsburg Scottish Festival

Yesterday, I attended the Williamsburg Scottish Festival. It was a beautiful day. My Dad, sister Denise and her friend Lillie came to see there from Chesapeake.

I think the girls wanted to listen to the band Albannach and enjoy a beer. Neither was to Dad's taste. Lillie was enthralled with the historian, David Ross and got his photo. [I didn't so perhaps Lillie will share it for a later posting.]

I found Melissa Lukan and her husband of the Fredericksburg Scottish Society at the Clan Morrison tent. I also found Jerry of the forum XMarks the

I enjoyed my visit the day before to Colonial Williamsburg and Jamestown fort.

Wearing my kilt on Friday, I received many questions from the other tourists and requests to be photographed with them. This young lady is from Oman. She stopped me and asked if I would take a picture. I thought she wanted me to photopgraph, her and her friend. No, she wanted a picture of me with her and she would return to the compliment to me.

Friday, September 21, 2007


As a take-off from the concept casual Fridays, I’ve been wearing my kilt to work the last 6 Fridays. Today, I was joined by two other kilted XMTSers who wore their kilts to work! Paul Danner and Jim Breeden with their spouses Dottie and Sharon meet for lunch at a local Panera Bread in Spotsylvania.

After this photo was taken a fellow came up to us and told us about his trip to Scotland and his Scots Irish ancestry. He said he almost purchased a kilt while there but did not. We told him about X Marks the Scot and kilt makers on the forum.

Sharon works at the Fredericksburg Visitor Center. She commented that she had been a serving wench at the Rising Sun Tavern. She noted that I was a member of the Fredericksburg Scottish Society. I think its time to schedule a Kilt Night on First Fridays for October 5th.

After work I was in the check out line at a local Ukrops grocery store when a lady asked me if I was Scottish. Scottish ancestry I replied, yes. She told me she was from Edinburgh! As I was leaving the store I passed a couple and overhead the fellow say to his girl as he pointed to my kilt, I got to get one of those!

A very successful Kilted Friday!

Tuesday, September 18, 2007


The venue of Sky Meadows State Park at DelePlane was a great success. It was a beautiful day in a beautiful setting. A little windy at times, but you can't have everything. The organizers were well pleased with the turn out went beyond their expectations and additional parking was made for the overflow.

I had the opportunity to talk to one of the Board members about suggestions in reviving the Scottish Festival in Fredericksburg. As I manned the MacCallum Malcolm Clan tent three representatives approached me about attending their Scottish Festival. Next year the VA Games will go back to the two day format. More pictures of the the Festival is here.

Monday, September 10, 2007

Fredericksburg Scottish Games

Yesterday, I met with the Chief of the Fredericksburg Scottish Society, Don Macleay and his wife Astrid. We talked about the now defunct Fredericksburg Highland Games and Celtic Festival. I had recently moved to Fredericksburg and attended them in 1998. In 1999, a business trip took me out of town. That was the last one.

Don gave me the history of the games and shared his exploratory efforts over the last few years to resurrect them. There appears to be an interest in Scottish heritage groups in the area to bring them back. Much work would have to be done in achieving their comeback.

Saturday, September 8, 2007


Next Saturday, September 15th, The Virginia Highland Games are to be held in Sky Meadows State Park in Deleplane. This will be the first year at this site leaving the City of Alexandria. The open fields and fresh mountain air should make a wonderful setting!