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Scottish Burns Supper Brings a Wee Bit of Cheer to Winter Night

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KENT—Raise a glass with the Kent Chamber of Commerce during a Scottish Burns Supper Jan. 27.

A Burns Supper is a traditional celebration held in honor of Scotland’s renowned national poet Robert Burns, who lived and wrote during the 18th century. 

This event will involve traditional Scottish food, dancing, whiskey tasting and entertainment. 

“This event is all about camaraderie,” explains Kent Chamber of Commerce board member Gary Kidd, organizer of the event and himself originally hailing from Scotland.

“In Scotland, this celebration takes place on or around Burns’ birthday (Jan. 25),” he said. “It is very much celebrated and coming together for this traditional holiday holds a big place in Scottish people’s hearts.”

Key elements of a Burns Supper will be included, such as the Address to the Haggis, performed during this particular event by Robert Mellis, a Kent resident who is also a native of Scotland.

A traditional Scottish meat pudding, haggis, is brought into the room accompanied by bagpipes. The poem “Address to a Haggis” by Burns is recited and the haggis is ceremoniously cut open. 

Scottish whiskey tastings will be provided by Kent Wine & Spirit. Tastings of the haggis with neeps (mashed turnips) and tatties (mashed potatoes) and homemade shortbread from Sacred Grounds Coffee will be offered as well.

Readings of Burns’ poetry and performances of traditional Scottish music or dance are common entertainment during the evening Ceilidh Dancinga traditional form of social dancing that originated in Scotland, will be taught.

The term “ceilidh” (pronounced kay-lee) is Gaelic and loosely translates to a social gathering or party. Ceilidh dances are often energetic and lively. All ages and skill levels are welcome and encouraged to participate. 

“Ceilidh dancing is a progressive form of social dancing where there is a caller responsible for instructing the dancers on the steps and live music, provided at this event by bagpiper Jesse Ofgang and friends,” Kidd explains.

“Ceilidh dancing is such an integral part of Scottish culture that it’s taught in schools and is a popular feature of most any gathering,” he said, noting that he will play the role of caller.

The evening concludes with the singing of “Auld Lang Syne,” one of Burns’ most famous songs. It has become a traditional way to end not only Burns Suppers but many celebrations worldwide.

This event will take place at the Kent Community House located at 93 N Main Street in Kent Jan. 27 from 7 to 10:30 p.m.

Tickets are required for entry and can be purchased HERE. All people must be 21 years of age or older to attend. 

Light refreshments and snacks will be provided. Attendees are welcome to bring their own beverages. All proceeds benefit the Kent Chamber of Commerce. 

This event is sponsored in part by 45 on Main Coffee and Creamery.

For over 50 years, the Kent Chamber of Commerce has been bringing local businesses together to develop and promote balanced economic growth that enhances the quality of life in our community. It hosts many events throughout the year, including a seasonal weekly farmers market, Sidewalk Sale Days, Pumpkin Run and more. 

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