January 29 – 31, 2021
FEATURED EVENTS FROM PAST YEARS
The halls of the Mountain House echo with the sound of bagpipes as the Mohonk grounds transform into the highlands of Scotland! Our Scottish Weekend features award-winning musicians, concerts, workshops, Scottish history, Scotch whisky tasting, the “Address to the Haggis,” a ceilidh, Scottish country dance, bagpipe-playing, and kilt-making.
Listed below are some of the events from the past years.
Availability is limited. For reservations, please call .
Welcome Tea and Scottish Treats!
Join us for afternoon tea and cookies with Scottish fiddle-tunes from Highland Oasis and a special performance from the Sky Top Highland Dancers.
Annual Mohonk Ceilidh
The evening show is followed by the annual Mohonk Ceilidh, a Gaidhlig (Scottish Gaelic) word meaning “A visit”. We invite you to “visit” with us in the Parlor and enjoy the opportunity to share a song, poem, story, “party piece”, or to simply sit back, listen, and enjoy and perhaps sing along to some Scottish favorites. Meet the performers and fellow Mohonk guests during this very special part of the tradition of the Mohonk Scottish Weekend.
Kilt Making Display
We are so pleased to welcome back the well-known kiltmaker Bonnie Heather Greene of Bonniekilts. She will be available throughout the weekend to answer your questions about kilts and tartans and will bring resources, books, and samples for those who wish to research their family tartan!
Celtic Art Workshop with Patrick Gallagher
Patrick has spent over twenty years as an artist, lecturer, master printmaker, and teacher of the Celtic Arts, sharing his passion at over 500 events to date. Patrick has helped make Celtic Art a modern phenomenon and his work is archived by the UCLA School of Architecture and Design. Join him and discover an art form thousands of years young.
Scottish Country Dance Workshop
This is always a popular workshop and combines fun and exercise! Learn the basics of Scottish Country Dancing, the social dancing of Scotland. Led by Elizabeth Buonomo, a teacher of the Royal Scottish Country Dance Association with the Castle Point Scottish Country Dancers, this workshop is for everyone and no previous experience or partner is necessary to participate!
Gaelic Language Workshop
More details to come.
Join us for afternoon tea and cookies with Scottish treats.
Scotch Whisky Tasting
“To Friar John Cor, by order of the King, to make aqua vitae, VIII bolls of malt.”
— Exchequer Rolls of Scotland, 1 June 1495.
According to the Scotch Whisky Association, Scotch whisky evolved from a Scottish drink called uisge beatha, which means “water of life”. The earliest record of distillation in Scotland occurred as long ago as 1494. Join Scotch distributor Michael Mednikoff as he shares insights on fine Scottish whiskeys. This year we will be sampling whisky from Balvenie (14 years), Glenfiddich (14 years), Macallan (15 years), Highland Park Valkyrie, Dalmore Portwood, and Lagavulin (8 years).
Note: Pre-registration is required. $60 per person program fee for admittance. Space is limited. Must be age 21 or over to attend.
Address to the Haggis and Tribute to Robert Burns
Enjoy the annual procession into the dining room for dinner, followed by a traditional Address to the Haggis, led by David McCormick and the Schenectady Pipe Band Ensemble.
But mark the Rustic, haggis fed,
The trembling earth resounds his tread.
Clap in his walie nieve a blade,
He’ll mak it whissle;
An’ legs an’ arms, an’ heads will sned,
Like taps o’ thrissle.
-“Address to a Haggis” by Robert Burns
Join Gaitley and Jim Stevenson-Mathews in singing familiar Scottish favorites. This chance to sing along to classic Scottish songs is back this year due to popular demand. All the words are provided and requests are encouraged!
A Classic Scottish Concert
The performers of the Mohonk Scottish Weekend are pleased to bring you a very exciting evening of entertainment featuring dance, songs, and music from Scotland from across the ages and across the world. This concert brings together the classic and the contemporary and is sure to have you tapping your toes to the great fiddle music, wanting to dance the jigs and reels, excited by the energetic Highland dancing, entranced by the beautiful melodies of Scottish and Gaelic song, and enjoying the great tunes of the Highland Bagpipe.
The concert is followed by Scottish country dancing (ceilidh dancing) in the Parlor with the Castle Point Scottish Country Dancers and Ellen Sears. Ceilidh dancing is for all levels of dancers and no experience is necessary!
Scottish Music Workshop
More details to come.
Highland Dance Workshop
Learn the elements of highland dance from Premier-leveled dancers, Kendra Monroe and Emily Ritter of the Sky Top Highland Dancers. Come to dance, learn basic steps, or to watch and learn about Highland Dance. All ages and abilities are welcome!
Learn about the history, structure, and playing of the great Highland bagpipes from Pipe Major William Munro and members of the Schenectady Pipe Band. All are welcome and participation is encouraged!
The Singing of Auld Lang Syne
The singing of Auld Lang Syne followed by the procession into lunch from the Parlor led by the Schenectady Pipe Band Ensemble is a long established tradition at Mohonk Mountain House. This brings to a close the festivities of the Mohonk Scottish Weekend as we already look forward to next year!
PAST PROGRAM LEADERS
Caroline Bennett is our program coordinator for Scottish Weekend at Mohonk Mountain House. She hails from the UK and was introduced to Scottish music, song, and dance by her Scottish mother. She is passionate about Gaelic song and the Gaelic language, is a singer, weaver and spinner and regularly participates in traditional waulkings with her own woven cloth. She has received silver and gold medals at the North Carolina Gaelic Mòd. Caroline has also performed extensively as a Scottish Country Dancer and has received her Part 1 teaching certification. This is the eighth year that Caroline has been the program coordinator for the Mohonk Scottish Weekend and she is excited to be working again with such enthusiastic and talented performers.
James Ruff has focused his energies on researching and performing both the Early Scottish Gaelic Song and the Early Gaelic Wire Harp repertoires, as well as learning the Scottish Gaelic language since 2005. He is particularly interested in the “Classical Music of the Gael” of both Scotland and Ireland. He has served on the music faculties of Smith College, Amherst College, MIT, the University of Connecticut, Emerson College, Longy School of Music, Deerfield Academy, and the Walnut Hill School for the Arts. Since 2008, Mr. Ruff has taught voice at Vassar College, and maintains a private voice and harp studio. For more information, see: jamesrufftenorharper.com.
Schenectady Pipe Band
Schenectady Pipe Band formed in 1917 with the support of Clan MacRae and General Electric. They are one of the oldest bagpipe bands in the United States and celebrated their 100th anniversary in 2017. This distinguished band has won many honors and has traveled extensively in North America and in the UK. During the bands ’93 trip to Scotland they returned with a coveted 1st place for ‘Dress and Drill’ in their grade. Band members performing this weekend include Tom LaBelle, Bob Munro, Bill Munro, Louis Schenck, Barry Smith, Jeff Schenck, and Iain Munro. For more on the band please visit www.schenectadypipeband.com.
The Sky Top Highland Dancers
The Sky Top Highland Dancers, named after the famous and beautiful lookout point at Mohonk, are NYC-based Highland Dancers Kendra Monroe and Emily Ritter. 2020 marks the 8th and 5th year, respectively, that these dancers will perform during this celebratory weekend. Kendra and Emily met through Shot of Scotch NYC, for which Emily still performs, and both still teach through Kendra’s NYC-based lessons, Monroe School of Highland Dance. As certified highland dance teachers and premier level champion dancers, they are excited to share their passion for this endurance demanding Scottish art form.
The Castle Point Scottish Country Dancers
The Castle Point Scottish Country Dancers are managed by Elizabeth Buonomo and dance in various tri-state area branches of the Royal Scottish Country Dance Society. The demonstration team includes Elizabeth, Shelby Peak, Sarah Tucker, Angus Grandfield, Jack O’Connor, Ken Saunders, Debbie Saunders, and John Velonis. All have studied traditional dance and music for many years and share a passion for the grace, intricacy, and pure fun of Scottish Country Dance. They are delighted to return again to enjoy this wonderful weekend with Mohonk guests.
Highland Oasis celebrates the vibrant music of Scotland. Merging the talents of three accomplished dance musicians, the results range from lyrical to exuberant, stately to driving. Pianist and band leader Jim Stevenson-Mathews has been playing regularly for Scottish dances and workshops since 1992, and played for his first Scottish Weekend at Mohonk in 2010. Fiddler Mara Shea began playing for Scottish dancing in 1999 in North Carolina, and joined Highland Oasis at Mohonk in 2011. Fiddler Rebecca McCallum began playing for Scottish dances in Rochester, NY in 1997, and in 2012 became a part of Highland Oasis. All three share a passion for the rhythms and melodies of the Scottish Isles. For more on Highland Oasis, please visit https://www.facebook.com/HighlandOasis/.
Gaitley Stevenson-Mathews is a vocalist, acting coach, and speech coach, and has also worked for many years in arts administration, ran a theatre company, and served on the Cultural Affairs Commision for the City of Dallas. Additionally, he worked as a professional actor and director for more than twenty years, is a member of Actors’ Equity Association (AFL-CIO), and played Montie the Mountie opposite the big purple guy on the wildly popular “Barney and Friends.” Descended from Scots who settled the Cape Fear region of the Carolinas, Gaitley is often called on to sing Scottish classics. However, his greatest joy is singing the National Anthem for many celebrations in and around the City of Glen Cove (NY) where he will be serving as City Councilman beginning in January.
Michael Mednikoff, Regional Sales Manager with Empire Merchants North has over 27 years in the alcoholic beverage industry. He is a certified beverage professional covering the Hudson Valley and is also a certified wine and spirits trainer for Empire Merchants. He has a true passion for Scotch, Whiskey, and Bourbon, and has spent time at some of the largest Scotch producers in Scotland.
Availability is limited. For reservations, please call .
When you visit for Scottish Weekend, your overnight package includes:
- Three meals daily featuring fresh, locally sourced ingredients from our farm-to-table partners. See our full list of dining options>
- Access to more than 85 miles of scenic hiking trails
- Yoga, Meditation, and Fitness classes
- Afternoon tea and cookies in our historic Lake Lounge
- Make an appointment to visit our Greenhouse
- Indoor heated pool with underwater music
- Guided hikes and outdoor activities with our Recreation team
- Nightly evening entertainment, special events, and more! See activities schedule>
- Snowshoeing and cross-country skiing on more than 30 miles of groomed trails (weather permitting)
- Winter hiking with MICROspikes® (weather permitting)
- Ice-skating in the open air pavilion
- Guided outdoor activities and hiking with stunning views of the Catskill Mountains (weather permitting)
À la carte experiences available to overnight guests:
- A full menu of nature-inspired treatments at our award-winning spa
- The Carriage Lounge, featuring a full bar and handcrafted cocktails as well as hyper local draft beer and hard cider
- An award-winning wine list in our dining venues
- In-room dining
- Private fitness, yoga, meditation, and mindfulness sessions
- Disc golf discs available for purchase (weather permitting)