The Fourth Annual Great Canadian Kilt Skate was the biggest and best ever. Seven cities participated, and in several of these, the number of kilted and tartaned skaters increased substantially.
The season got off to a rocky start. Last year’s Kilt Skate Capital, Montreal, had to postpone its event by a week when a blizzard roared into town.
But the turnout for the turnout for the following week was excellent.
The Ottawa event was notable for its skating pipe band.
The following weekend again saw two events in different parts of the country. Toronto had a glorious sunny day on refrigerated ice.
While a thousand miles away, Saskatoon had a cold snap that didn’t prevent young skaters from enjoying the event.
In February, Alexandria (North Glengarry) held its first ever kilt skate in a hockey arena.
It used the upstairs facilities to host a social, with music and dancing as well as a birthday cake.
Calgary’s event attracted a celebrity mascot.
And Winnipeg, which had to cancel last year’s skate because of unseasonably warm weather, made up for it with the intense cold of the 2018 event.
So how, from among these successful events, do we choose the city that will join Ottawa (2015), Saskatoon (2016), and Montreal (2017) as the Kilt Skate Capital of Canada? There are many considerations that come into play. The total number of kilted and tartaned skaters certainly counts.
We’re especially impressed if the numbers show a significant increase from last year — in the order of 1000% in this case!
We like it when the event captures the essence of the annual theme. For 2018 it was: “Year of Young People.”
The opening ceremonies bring together representatives from the community and from various levels of government.
The media comes out to cover the event.
There’s ample opportunity to showcase Scottish culture.
A Kilt Skate Capital draws on the strength of its volunteers who come out and set up the hospitality tents.
The hospitality tents become a focal point for everyone in the area — Scottish or not.
The tents attract passers-by and encourage them to join the festivities. Some are attracted by the cake, hot chocolate and swag.
Who knows? These Brazilians may be back wearing tartans and skates next year…
In fact, some people find innovative ways to join in the fun.
Everyone has a good time in a Kilt Skate Capital.
And so, it is with great pleasure and pride that www.kiltskate.com declares the 2018 Kilt Skate Capital to be Toronto — the event organized by Kimberley Henwood on behalf of the Sons of Scotland and the Clans and Scottish Societies Association of Canada.
Congratulations, Toronto. Now the competition begins to see who will be the 2019 Kilt Skate Capital of Canada.