Colorado Tartan Day Festival Returns April 9-10, 2022

Highlander making his rounds (could that be Santa?), photo by Paul McDaniel
As the green dust of St. Patrick’s settles and Spring begins to emerge, a colorful array of Tartans will once again be in full bloom to celebrate Scottish culture. Spring is the time of renewal, and after lying dormant for the past two years, the Colorado Tartan Day Festival is ready to return to the Boulder County Fairgrounds in Longmont, Colorado, for its 5th annual gathering on April 9-10, 2022.
Presented by the Colorado Tartan Day Council, the festival is a family-oriented, family-friendly event, offering something for all cultures and every age group.
Historically, Tartan Day is based on a day in 1320 when the Declaration of Arbroath was signed (April 6), declaring Scottish independence. It’s important to note that the American Declaration of Independence was modeled after this historic letter. Tartan Day celebrates Scotland’s cultural and historic contributions to the world. We invite all who have embraced the Tartan to join us in celebrating family, community, nation, heritage and the human need for connection. But, people of non-Scottish heritage can join in the fun, too! If you don’t have a kilt, simply outfit yourself with your favorite plaid accessory, or not, as the festival is very informal – and admission is FREE to the public.
Clan tents display and share information about Scottish heritage and roots. Photo by Paul McDaniel
There will be an opening ceremony on Saturday morning with a Parade of Clans. Festival-goers can also expect to see a lot of the Colorado State Tartan, a Scottish tartan pattern officially adopted by the state of Colorado in 1998. Colorado is one of two states to have its own official tartan. Every color in the tartan is representative of an aspect of the state’s history or identity – green signifies Colorado’s evergreens and the gold represents the state’s gold-mining history.
The festival will feature 20 Clan Tents eager to share their respective history and help attendees trace their lineage back to ancient Scottish families and clans. There will be 14 vendors selling everything from custom-made clothing and jewelry to leather items and swords. In addition to food trucks, be sure to visit the “Wicked Claymore”, the onsite Scottish pub. There will also be a drawing for two custom-made, Celtic quilts; tickets will be on sale through Saturday, April 9, with the drawing on Sunday, April 10.
Live musical entertainment will feature Gobs O’Phun, a family duet performing traditional Celtic folk songs. Celebrating their 28th year, their songs tell stories, and the stories have universal themes any culture can appreciate. So, you don’t need Shamrocks and Thistle in your blood to enjoy the music and join in the fun. The Gobs spirited, laugh-inducing, and affable performance leaves audiences feeling like part of the family, with pleasant memories and a feeling of good cheer. The Gobs will be joined by an array of musical guests, dubbed “Gobs of Friends & Mohr”. No, that’s not a typo… “Mohr” refers to the band and regular festival headliner, Angus Mohr, who is sadly sidelined this year due to a health issue. Known as a pumped-up, Celtic rock’n’roll band, some members of Angus Mohr will channel their acoustic charm and join the Gobs for various performances. You may even hear a bagpipe or two at the festival.
Other attractions include the Renaissance Scots Living History Association, which has been delighting Celtic festival guests for 22 years. Their village setting allows the public to experience Highland life from the time of William Wallace through the Jacobite uprising in 1745. Besides sharing the history, you’ll find demonstrations on heritage crafts such as basket making, blacksmithing, weaving, leatherworking, and traditional culinary dishes. And for a little more excitement, check out the fighting element of the RenScots, the Wolves of Dunvegan, a skilled display of ancient combat and swordsmanship. They’ll educate the public on their arsenal, from broadswords and claymores to other assorted, historic weaponry.
The Empire for Medieval Pursuits is dedicated to the re-creation and enjoyment of the realities, myths, and legends of the Ancient to Medieval world. Their forum allows individuals to share a mutual interest in the celebration of the arts, customs, and ideologies of diverse and ancient cultures.
There will be a special area for children’s activities, including face painting and crafts. And, “Lemon Drop the faerie” will be sharing a sense of wonder with trinkets and pixie dust.
Join the Colorado Tartan Day Festival for a fun-filled weekend for the entire family.
Festival dates, times and location:
Saturday & Sunday, April 9-10, 2022
9 am to 5 pm, Saturday
9 am to 4 pm, Sunday
Boulder County Fairgrounds
9595 Nelson Rd.
Longmont, CO 80501
Festival attendance is free to the public, though donations are encouraged. The Colorado Tartan Day Council holds a variety of fundraisers throughout the year, including tea and whiskey tasting events, to support the festival.
Sponsor: Molson Coors
Renaissance Scots Living History Association demonstrates 17th century sword arts, photo credit Paul McDaniel

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