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Jun 29, 201602:33 PMCulture

Fun and Culture in the Mid-State

Celtic Celebration Yields a Day of Memories

Jun 29, 2016 - 02:33 PM
Celtic Celebration Yields a Day of Memories

Photography by Daulton J. Leonard

John Knopp (left) from Maryland and Garry Gwozdz (right) from Jim Thorpe, Pennsylvania in traditional garb.

Drifting through the cloudless sky are the sweet aromas of Celtic food. The nostril invasion is accompanied by the harmonious melodies of the infamous Celtic music, and a wave of merriment is effervescent from the moment one’s foot steps inside the colossal Mount Hope Estates in Lebanon County, Pennsylvania. As far as the eye may wander, people don kilts to pay homage to their ancestors and celebrate their rich heritage.


One of the biggest attractions of Celtic Fling is the delicious food. It would not be a real Celtic celebration without haggis. Haggis is a Scottish pudding with an array of succulent vegetables typically featuring onions, carrots, celery and often blended with a variety of spices. Haggis is heaven to the taste buds, but difficult for the mind to stomach.


Made of sheep’s pluck, this Scottish idiom means that the sheep’s heart, liver and lungs are the meat you are tasting in the pudding. While this may sound difficult to swallow, the taste is comparable to that of meatloaf. Each bite leaves you feeling a little more on the shores of Scotland.


 The music carries you over the waves, rhythmic and folk tune accompaniments envelop the ear. Popular and well-known bands perform all day including Tartanic, Scythian and the Screaming Orphans. Dancers on stage perform traditional dance routines that showcase the interpretive dance of the country. Drum-heavy songs and bagpipes call your feet to dance, but if you are not much of a dancer there are also Celtic sports.


Caber Toss, which is flipping a nineteen foot long log; Clachneart, similar to shot put with a twenty-eight pound stone; Scottish Hammer toss, a 22 pound hammer sent aloft then measured for distance; and a 56 pound weight toss over a bar are just some of the games that take place. These athletes register just before the games, competing all day to win prizes.



One of the most difficult games is the weight toss. This features the athlete tossing a 56 pound weight backwards over a bar beginning at ten feet in the air. The champion from this year was 42-years-old. He tossed the hefty weight 15 feet six inches in the air. It is a spectacle worth seeing.


The relaxing celebration of Celtic heritage is a day of fun for families. Between the food, music and games, a day at Mount Hope is paradise accessible and enjoyable for everyone.


For more information about upcoming events at Mount Hope Estate visit parenfaire.com.

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