Published: December 31, 2000

Northern Ontario to Host New Band Contest and Concert

North Bay, Ontario, will be host to a new pipe band competition on May 18 and 19, 2001, at the city’s first Celtic Arts Celebration. The event will also feature a joint concert by the MacTarnahan’s Prince Charles Pipe Band of San Francisco, California, and the Celtic Flair Pipe Band of Mississauga, Ontario.

“The city of North Bay came to us about having a festival,” said Mark Porter, chairman of the pipe band events. “They have agreed to back us and allow us the city resources in making sure this event is a huge success for years to come.”

The Prince Charles band won the Grade 2 event at the 2000 World Pipe Band Championships in Glasgow, and have been officially upgraded to Grade 1 by the Western United States Pipe Band Association.

The weekend will feature Grade 1-only “Battle of the Bands” event, described as “anything goes,” where bands can demonstrate their creativity and musicality for prize money.

“This has never been done before in Northern Ontario,” Porter continues. “I feel it will better educate the non-piping enthusiasts and will give a chance for pipe band enthusiasts to hear their favourite band in a relaxed atmosphere.”

The unsanctioned event will be judged by a panel comprising half piping and half non-pipe band, “celebrity” judges.

A professional and amateur solo knock-out competition is also scheduled for the event.

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