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Fri, Sept. 20

MORE THAN MEN IN KILTS: Prescott's Highland Games return to Watson Lake Saturday

Courier file<br>When people think of Highland Games, they usually envision “men in skirts throwing telephone poles,” said Jill Nelson, president of the Prescott Area Celtic Society.

Courier file<br>When people think of Highland Games, they usually envision “men in skirts throwing telephone poles,” said Jill Nelson, president of the Prescott Area Celtic Society.

Those who "love all things Celtic" will want to head to Watson "Loch" Saturday for the annual Prescott Highland Games extravaganza.

Gates at Watson Lake, which is off Highway 89, open at 9 a.m., opening ceremonies are at 10 a.m. and the fun keeps going until closing ceremonies at 4 p.m. and the end of the games at 5 p.m.

When people think of Highland Games, they usually envision "men in skirts throwing telephone poles," said Jill Nelson, president of the sponsoring group, the Prescott Area Celtic Society. But, games are more than that. Competitions include the Braemar stone, the open stone, heavy and light weights for distance, heavy and light hammers and more.

A special feature will be sheepherding dogs herding ducks, pipe and drum bands/bagpiping competitions, offering Celtic music and marching bands, as well as Highland dance competitions. Participants in these events come to the games from all over the country, Nelson said.

The day will also feature a weaver demonstrating the craft from sheep's wool and the Children's Glen, with games and crafts, caber toss and tug-of-war for youngsters.

The Jacobites will be on hand to reenact Scottish history in full regalia and expound on the Highland culture, lore and tradition.

The Wicked Tinkers, "a Celtic tribal sound explosion," will entertain with their music at 11 a.m. and 1 and 2:45 p.m. on Watson Lake's main stage.

According to the Wicked Tinkers' website, they have been "playing haunting, heart-pounding bagpipes and irresistible tribal drums as a professional touring band since 1995.

"This is music you might have heard hundreds of years ago at a Scottish wedding celebration or perhaps around the campfire of a raiding party."

The Wicked Tinkers' ensemble also includes "the mesmerizing drone" of the Australian didgeridoo and the Bronze Age Irish horn.

Besides entertainment and games, visitors will have the opportunity to dine on both Celtic and American food that vendors will be selling, as well as and shop among vendors with Celtic merchandise.

Tickets are $16 for adults, $13 for seniors, students and military, $8 for children ages 6 through 12 and free for children under 5. Group tickets are available for $10. For more information, call 443-1422 or log onto www.prescotthighlandgames.com.

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