Reynoldsburg News

Tartan Day

Reynoldsburg will celebrate its Scottish heritage April 5

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The wearin' of the green will make way for a plentitude of plaid Saturday, April 5, at the annual Tartan Day celebration in Reynoldsburg.

Most activities are planned from 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. at Huber Park, 1520 Davidson Drive. Athletics events begin earlier, at 9:30 a.m., at the ball diamond near the Reynoldsburg Senior Center, also at Huber Park.

The free event is sponsored by the Daughters of Scotland, the Reynoldsburg Parks and Recreation Department and the Reynoldsburg-Truro Historical Society.

Margaret McCullough, coordinator of Tartan Day for the Daughters of Scotland, said visitors will get "a new appreciation for all things Scottish."

"They hear all about the Irish, but don't see the Scottish side enough," she said. "We will teach people about the different tartans and provide clan information so that they could see if they are a member of one clan or another.

"It's a family event with something for everyone and especially for anyone with an interest in Scotland," she said. "Reynoldsburg was founded by eight Scottish families -- which is why we do Tartan Day in Reynoldsburg instead of Columbus."

She said Alexander Livingston, known as the developer of the tomato as a commercial crop and the reason Reynoldsburg has a Tomato Festival each summer, was of Scottish descent, as were the Grahams, the Taylors and several other Reynoldsburg families.

McCullough also is of Scottish descent. She lives in Clintonville but has organized the event in Reynoldsburg for the past 12 years.

She said members of the Daughters of Scotland will sell Scottish food, including haggis, a Scottish delicacy.

"Haggis is ground meat parts blended with oats, so it is kind of like the inside of a sausage that you can put on a cracker," she said.

If that doesn't sound appetizing, there are other choices, such as sausage rolls -- link sausages cooked in puff pastries -- homemade shortbread and currant squares, which are small tarts made with currants cooked into a buttery pastry.

She said hot dogs, sloppy joes and a food truck offering Italian sausage sandwiches and standard "fair food" also will be available.

Don't look for Scottish whiskey, though; no alcohol of any kind will be served at the event.

Games from 9:30 a.m. to 3 p.m. include the caber toss, in which men attempt to toss a a 300-pound caber, which is about six feet long and looks a lot like a telephone pole; the stone throw, which is similar to shot put; and "sheath," in which athletes use a pitchfork to toss a bale of hay over a pole vault bar.

Smaller versions of the events will be offered as children's games, including a caber toss using cardboard tubes from rugs, a bean-bag toss, tug-of-war and a 20-yard dash.

A baseball hit, throw and run clinic and a soccer game also is scheduled from 10:30 a.m. to midday.

Performers include pipers piping and drummers drumming, thanks to the Capital City Pipes and Drums and the Cyril Scott Pipe Band, along with Mad Maudlin, a Celtic band, and Steve Schack playing the Celtic harp.

McCullough said Melanie Pratt will open the event with storytelling at 11 a.m.

Mayor Brad McCloud will welcome visitors at noon.

The Scottish country dancing, starting around 2:15 p.m., is similar to square dancing. Audience members will be invited to join in on the fun, McCullough said.

"We will be pulling people in to dance with us," she said.

Four new vendors will set up in the senior center, she said.

"We will have some new vendors selling things like home beauty products, soaps and hand oils, along with weaving crafts and jewelry," McCullough said.

Tartan Day is celebrated all over the country in early April. In 1998, National Tartan Day on April 6 was officially recognized after the U.S. Senate passed Senate Resolution 155.

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