City of Washington to sit out 2014 season

Published: April 16, 2014
(Page 1 of 1)

One of the United States’ most well-known and accomplished pipe bands, City of Washington reportedly will not compete in 2014 due to lack of numbers according to sources close to the group.

The band, which has struggled to maintain a competitive roster over the last five years, is so far only able to field eight pipers, with winter recruitment efforts not coming to fruition, and two pipers who had intended to compete with the band recently pulled out, leaving the group with little choice but to nix the year.

It is not known if members have been given a blessing to find other bands with which to play, and Pipe-Major Dan Lyden had not responded to a request for comment at publication time.

The group has tried to establish an unofficial feeder-band system with both the Guilford & Glencoe Pipe Band, which has also fallen on hard times, leaving only the Grade 3 MacMillan Pipe Band of Maryland as a strong source for recruitment.

Founded in 1961 as Denny & Dunipace (in tribute to the Scotland-based band of the same name, but completely unconnected), the group has competed in Grade 2 and Grade 1 ever since, with its most successful years being in Grade 1 in the late-1990s and early-2000s, when it finished as a high as second in the Grade 1 North American Championship.

A source close to the band said that there is a contingent within the remaining group “that would like to see if there’s any way to use the freedom of a no-competition schedule to breathe some wind into the sails.”

City of Washington was demoted to Grade 2 by the RSPBA after their Grade 1 MSR performance with 10 pipers at the 2010 World Pipe Band Championships, and never was able to return to Grade 1. The band finished last overall out of seven bands competing in Grade 2 at the 2013 North American Championships.

In November of 2013, the Grade 1 Oran Mor Pipe Band of New York folded and merged with the Grade 2 Stuart Highlanders of Massachusetts, leaving the United States with one Grade 1 pipe band, the Los Angeles Scots.

The Greater Midwest Pipe Band recently formed to create a new Grade 2 group in the Chicago area. The band’s website currently lists five members.

VN:R_U [1.9.22_1171]
Rating: 4.0/5
VN:R_U [1.9.22_1171]
Rating: 0
  1. Piperjay23

    This is terribly unfortunate. Seems to be a recurring problem throughout the US as players continue to genuflect to the mystique and aura of Canadian grade I. It makes it difficult to sacrifice the time, $ and travel when you know you’re hitting the field without some of your better hometown players. Too bad American players aren’t as patriotic when it comes to Pipe Bands as they are with the Ryder Cup. [edited]

GET THE MOBILE APP!
The new pipes|drums app offers the same publication with a streamlined experience. Get the latest news optimized for your smartphone.
Download on the App Store

Get it on Google Play
THIS DAY IN HISTORY:
May 26, 1841Angus MacKay marries Mary Russell, Edinburgh.
TOP STORIES
Articles from the last three months with the highest overall ratings by readers.
  1. “Pipers Meeting” makes oldest tunes new again
  2. The 1987 Iain McLeod p|d Interview
MOST RECENT POST
  • What judges want
    Tue, 18 Apr 2017
    Sitting adjudicating an amateur solo piping competition the other day, I got to thinking again about the competitors, so many of them so anxious and apprehensive. Playing before a judge who’s going to judge your music is a weird t …
Read more »
UPCOMING EVENTS June 9, 2017Georgetown Highland GamesGeorgetown Fairgrounds

June 10, 2017UK Pipe Band ChampionshipsBelfast

June 15, 2017Cobourg Highland Games & FestivalVictoria Park, Cobourg

June 16, 2017Chicago Highland Games

June 17, 2017The National Piping Centre Virginia Piping & Drumming School 2017Shenandoah University, Winchester VA

TIP OF THE DAY
Pipers: Tailor the bag cover to suit the bag. If the cover is too big then the bag can slip within the cover causing discomfort and poor posture.
Stuart Shedden, Glasgow, 1998 Northern Meeting Gold Medallist

FROM THE ARCHIVES