First Ever Kilt Skate in NYC

The kilt skate phenomenon made a spectacular jump over the Canada-U.S. border and has landed a Salchow in midtown Manhattan. The first-ever Tartan Kilt Skate NYC was held on February 2 — a day that found New Yorkers experiencing another Canadian import: the polar vortex.

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The cold didn’t prevent the pipers from taking to the ice.


Although some pipers preferred to gather nearer the pavilion at Bryant Park, where their instruments would stay in tune longer. These pipers are from the NYU Pipe Band.


Some New Yorkers were content to watch from the sidelines…


Or from the comfort and hospitality of the VIP pavilion — a good place to get warm and warm up the pipes before taking to the rink.

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But in spite of the cold, many New Yorkers celebrated their Scottish heritage like Canadian kilt skaters do: with bare knees and ice.


Being a pragmatic folk, the Scots aren’t adverse to taking precaution. Why freeze body parts that you’d rather not have frozen?


Working with Bryant Park’s Freeze Festival at the Bank of America Winter Village, the American-Scottish Foundation made sure there was Walker’s shortbread and Scottish bunting on hand.


And lots of tartan.


Some skaters flew the saltire with great exuberance.

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All in all, a great opportunity to celebrate Scotland’s contribution to the American melting pot.


Thanks to Camilla Hellman and her team at the American Scottish Foundation.


Thanks as well to their partners at Bryant Park.


The next big day for the Foundation is the 20th Anniversary of the NY Tartan Day Parade on Saturday April 6th capping off a great week of events throughout the City.


And we look forward to the Second Annual Tartan Kilt Skate NYC next year!

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