Tartans flock to Te Anau

Ann Hayward, of Dunedin, won the "Best Dressed" award and her son 16-year-old son Oe won the most points in the D grade piping competition.
Te Anau Tartan Festival winners of the four piping grades (from left) Jack Stobart (C grade), Dane McLeod (B grade), Graeme Glass (A grade) and Oe Hayward (D grade).

MORE than 2000 people enjoyed Te Anau Tartan Festival at the weekend.

Held at the Fiordland Community Events Centre, the festival showcased piping and dancing competitions in front of national judges, and the modified Highland Games, which were held at Memorial Park next door.

Entrants came from as far away as Otago and Christchurch for the piping and Highland dancing competitions.

Feature events included the Highland Heavyweight Championship (caber and sheaf tossing, stone carrying and farmers’ walk), bouncy castles and bumper balls.

In all more than 40 silver challenge trophies were at stake.

Teams competed for the coveted tug o’ war championship and the annual Milford Mile with some Flying Scotsmen.

Saturday’s events also included Te Anau Community Market and a dinner and ceilidh, held at Te Anau Club, in the evening.

The Milford Mile was a mixed field. Te Anau athlete Dwight Grieve won the men’s title and Nicole Green of Te Anau the women’s.

A Scottish-themed variety concert opened the festivities on Friday night.

Festival chairman Chris Watson said it appeared lots of people were having fun.

“There was huge support from the community and without volunteers it wouldn’t have been possible.”

About 60 volunteers, including the Fiordland Athletic Club and Fiordland Netball Club and several others pitched in, too, he said.

Pipers Gwylam MacMillan-Armstrong (12), of Te Anau, and ILT City of Invercargill Highland Pipe Band member Ann Robbie, of Ryal Bush, wrap up the festival at Te Anau Memorial Park.