So there I was, back in New Zealand at the Turakina Highland Games. But this year was special as it marked the celebration of the 150th Games – what an amazing feat. The weather agreed wholeheartedly as it was a gloriously sunny summer day (and the only such nice day in a while). As local MP Ian McKelvie, who opened the Games, observed, ‘It was a huge success and a great credit to all who put so much effort into making it the spectacle it was. This is further proof of the vibrancy and resilience of our small rural communities.’
The Games began on Friday with a piper’s lament played at the village cemetery to honour the original Turakina settlers, followed by a function at the Ben Nevis Tavern when Ben Nevis whisky, a single malt bottled and labelled by the Ben Nevis distillery at Fort William to celebrate the 150th Turakina Highland Games, was launched. The Games saw a record numbers of competitors in piping and drumming events, and the New Zealand open piping championships were held. It was a truly great day, and one that did well to celebrate the amazing legacy of the Scots in New Zealand, and Turakina in particular.
And here are a few short video clips: