March 20, 2020

Latest big event cancellation: Chicago Games

St. Thomas Alumni competing at the 2019 Chicago Highland Games.

The piping an drumming world is to the point no when an event going ahead is more news than one that’s cancelled, but the latest big competition to be nixed is the Chicago Highland Games, the biggest contest by number of competing bands in the United States.

The Midwest Pipe Band Association mad the announcement on the night of March 20th, President Jim Sim saying, “It is with a heavy heart that I am announcing the cancellation of the 2020 Chicago Highland Games. As many of you know the main charity of the Games is the Illinois St. Andrew Society which runs the Scottish Home and Caledonia Senior Living. They are going 24/7 now with the coronavirus to keep their residents and staff safe. They will be focused on this for the foreseeable future.”

Sim said that entry fees will be refunded for the competition, which had been scheduled for June 19-20. The 2019 event attracted eight Grade 2 bands, and 36 bands in total. St. Thomas Alumni of Houston won the Grade 2 competition, and a few months later went on to win the grade at the World Championships in Glasgow.

The announcement is the latest in a long series of cancellations that have included the first three major championships in the UK. No announcements have been made regarding the three biggest remaining pipe band contests: the Scottish Championships at Dumbarton, Scotland; the North American Championships at Maxville, Ontario; and the World Championships in Glasgow.

The Chicago Highland Games were known for introducing concert formation for its upper-grade medley events, proving popular with competitors.

The same night, the William Livingstone Invitational Solo Piping Competition was also cancelled. The event is held annually in Hamilton, Ontario.



St. Thomas Alumni sweeps Chicago Grade 2 with eight firsts




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