Piper Michael McLetchie pipes while MLA Don MacIntyre and his hife Maggie dance to the traditional Scottish music.

Robbie Burns Day celebrates life and works of poet

The Sylvan Lake Legion hosted its 23rd Robbie Burns dinner on Jan. 24

Between 70 and 80 people came out to the Sylvan Lake Legion to celebrate Scotland’s greatest poet, Robbie Burns.

The Legion’s 23rd annual dinner is one of thousands that take place across the world to celebrate the life and works of the prolific poet.

The night is full of music thanks to the Scottish bagpipes, dancing, poetry and food – complete with the Scottish delicacy haggis.

“If anyone tells you they don’t like haggis, they are wrong,” joked piper Michael McLetchie.

As is customary with Robbie Burns dinners, which always take place on or around Jan. 25, the haggis was piped in and “Address to a Haggis” is recited before dinner can start.

McLetchie gave an animated recital of the poem, which had the audience members enthralled.

Former president of the Ladies Auxillary, Lisa Sweet, called McLetchie’s performance “just great.”

“I love watching him recite [Burns], he really gets into it,” said Sweet.

Supper was done by the members of the Ladies Auxiliary and consisted of salad, chappit tatties (mashed potatoes with chopped greens), bashed neeps (mashed turnips with spices), pease (Middle English for peas), roast beef, haggis and an apple tart for dessert.

Highland dancers from Bain School of Dancing entertained the audience with beautiful, and enthusiastic moves. All of the young dancers at the event compete at a national level, and have many awards to accompany them.

Of the 23 years the Sylvan Lake Legion has been hosting a Robbie Burns night, the Bain School of Dancing has attended and danced for 22 years.

Over the course of the night, the event followed with a traditional program consisting of many toasts, which the Legion provided tomato juice for.

“I’m not going to say why, I’ll leave it to your imagination, just why the Scots love a toast,” Master of Ceremonies, and Sylvan Lake-Innisfail MLA Don MacIntyre said.

The night ended with the singing of the Burns classic “Auld Lang Syne” and some ceildh dancing.

Robbie Burns supper was first held in his memory on July 21, 1801 five years after the poet’s death at the age of 37. In 1803 it was celebrated on what was believed to be his birthday, Jan. 29 and was later moved to Jan. 25 after discovering his correct birth date in the parish records.


Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter


The haggis is piped in and put on display before the “Address to a Haggis” is recited.

Just Posted

Military Vehicle Display and Swap Meet will bring over 40 military vehicle displays

People from across Alberta will head to Red Deer for 2nd annual event

Beach Buddy Program brings reading lakeside

Beach Buddy Program is run through the Sylvan Lake Municipal Library during the summer months

Sylvan Lake swimmer heading to Pan Pacific Championships

Elizabeth Moore will be competing at the games in Fiji Aug. 23-26.

Eckville Elementary teacher advocates positive mental health for young children

Jaleesa Grzech has written a series of books to help children deal with anxiety and stress

Harvest safety reminders from Lacombe County

Lacombe County reminds producers, residents and visitors to be safe during fall harvest operations.

‘We will not forget:’ Thousands attend funeral fallen Fredericton officers

Hundreds of officials marched in the parade, which included massed band, several police motorcycles

WATCH: Pioneer Days runs all weekend at Sunnybrook Farm

Red Deerians brave the smoke to celebrate Sunybrook’s biggest event

Ride to Reynolds Alberta Museum in Wetaskiwin

Smoky but awesome event celebrates everything ‘motorcycles;’ open Sat. Aug. 18 to 4 p.m.

Canadians believe in immigration but concerned about asylum seekers: study

Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada paid for study to understand Canadian attitudes

These are the highest-paid actresses of 2018

In its list released this week Forbes said all 10 earned a total of $186 million before tax

Ponoka’s Ronnie Racing wins Hot August Night

About 15,000 people filled the Castrol Raceway stands at the motorsports complex

Vintage vehicle subject of RCMP search

Two Hills RCMP seek to identify owner of recovered 1940’s vehicle

Canada’s tax system unfairly favours wealthy, poll of CRA auditors suggests

Four of every five respondents think loopholes and tax credits built into the system benefit the rich

Banff’s Sunshine ski resort upset with proposed guidelines from Parks Canada

The plan would allow for more visitors but wouldn’t let Sunshine build additional facilities

Most Read