Grandfather Mountain Highland Games returns July 8-11 | Food and drink


During the summer, Grandfather Mountain is known for its lush greenery and the kaleidoscopic colors of its countless flowers.

However, in July, guests can add a completely different palette to their mix. And there are many.

From July 8 to 11, Grandfather Mountain is hosting the 2021 Grandfather Mountain Highland Games.

Aslynn Halvorson, an athlete from Anderson, South Carolina, throws logs at the Grandfather Mountain Highland Games.Photo by Skip Sickler | Grandfather Foundation for the Stewardship of the Mountain

During this time, McRae Meadows at the foot of Grandfather Mountain is teeming with bagpipes, Scottish athletics, Highland melodies, Celtic food, plenty of crafts and plenty of tartans.

“The game is approximately 3,600 miles, tuned in to Scotland’s rich cultural traditions in a mountainous environment,” said the director of marketing and communications for the Grandfather Mountain Stewardship Foundation, a non-profit organization that he owns. said Frank Ruggiero. We operate a nature park in Linville, North Carolina.


Grandfather Mountain Highland game participants can enjoy the volume of Celtic music, from rock to classical and all points in between. Photo courtesy of the Grandfather Mountain Stewardship Foundation.

The Highland Games, organized and sponsored by Grandfather Mountain Highland Games Inc., begins Thursday afternoon, July 8, with a Border Collie shepherd demonstration, Celtic entertainment and a “The Bear” uphill run. The performance and the opening ceremony will take place.

“The Bear” is a five-mile race that climbs 1,568 feet from the town of Linville to the summit, pitting hundreds of runners in a sudden switchback on Grandfather Mountain.

After Saturday, the Grandfather Mountain Marathon will be tested for extreme endurance, from Appalachian State University in Boone to the competition site in Linville.


At the Grandfather Mountain Highland Games, a Piper parade circles the field. The tournament will take place from July 8 to 11. Photo courtesy of the Grandfather Mountain Stewardship Foundation.

But the game really starts on Thursday night with the torchlight ceremony. There, more than 100 clan representatives announce their participation in family gatherings. “Clan Development” states that they have been reunited again to celebrate their legacy.

Fridays, Saturdays and Sundays are full of traditional Scottish heavyweight sporting events, Highland dance competitions, bagpipe parades, bagpipes, drummers, harp competitions, Scottish border collie shepherds demonstrations and live concerts. is.

The best Scottish athletes will face off on Saturday in traditional heavyweight events such as the ‘caber toss’ and ‘caber toss’.

In the caber throw, the athlete turns a log the size of a pole. Seafts challenges athletes to place a 16-pound hay sack on top of a bar over 20 feet high.


Athlete Brent Miller in Lebanon, Tennessee throws a bunch of 20-pound games in Scottish heavy men’s track and field at the Grandfather Mountain Highland Games.Photo by Skip Sickler | Grandfather Foundation for the Stewardship of the Mountain

Other ancient strength tests await players, such as highland wrestling, hammer throws, and various shot put.

On Sunday there will be a series of quilt racing, clan cabber throwing, clan tug of war events, as well as events for amateurs and athletes over 40.

For the little ones, the game once again hosts clinics and highland youth wrestling competitions, foot races and fierce battles.


Returning to McRae Meadows from July 8-11, one of the many shepherd demonstrations during the Grandfather Mountain Highland game, a skillful border collie surrounds the sheep. Photo by Greg Culpeper | Grandfather Foundation for the Stewardship of the Mountain.


In 2021, the event organizers will be Chambless and Muse, Ed Miller, Wolf Loescher, Jennifer Licko, Piper Jones Band, Reel Sisters, Tune Shepherds, Strathspan, Will MacMorran Project, Emerald Rae, Seven Nations, Jigger Note, The Brothers McLeod, Marie Beth. McQueen, shoe maker Colin.


Thursday night’s torchlight ceremony will kick off every Highlands game with more than 100 clan representatives announcing their participation in family gatherings. Photo by Jim Magruder | McGruder Photo.

Runner ancestors

Throughout the weekend, visitors can learn about their Scottish ancestry and genealogy in the clan tent or peruse the open-air market for Gaelic and tartan gift items.

You can enjoy the tradition with various concessions such as haggis and scotch pie.

Admission fee

For more information on participating in the 2021 Grandfather Mountain Highland Games, including parking and shuttle information, please visit: ..

COVID-19 (novel coronavirus infection)

For COVID-19, Grandfather Mountain Highland Games Inc. is following instructions from North Carolina and other government agencies and health authorities, including the United States Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

In addition, if you are in the shuttle, you must wear a mask when you are in the queue or in the shuttle. Game staff have a limit on the number of masks they can use when needed. The driver will also be responsible for not allowing people without a mask to board the game shuttle.

According to a statement from GMHG Inc., “Anyone attending the July 2021 event must follow all safety instructions posted upon participation. 2021 Grandfather Mountain Highland Games By accessing this site, you will voluntarily assume all risks associated with exposure to COVID-19. “


For more information about the game, please visit:, Or call 828-733-1333. For accommodation and travel information, visit the High Country Visitor Center (800-438-7500) or

The non-profit Grandfather Mountain Stewardship Foundation works to promote the protection of nature by helping guests explore, understand and appreciate the wonders of Grandfather Mountain. For more information, call (800) 468-7325 or visit the following website: Plan a trip.



Grandfather Mountain Highland Games – July 8-11: With bagpipes, stunning athletes, delicate dancers, upbeat Celtic music and spectacular Highland settings, this colorful celebration of Scottish culture is one of the country’s most acclaimed. It will be one of the Highland games that have been played. For more information, please visit:, phone 828-733-1333, or email [email protected]..

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