Friday, October 16, 2009

It's Harvest Season! Bring Out the Pipes! (Part 2)

New Hampshire Highland Games

This is it. The big one. The New Hampshire Highland Games are far and away the largest Scottish festival in the northeast, and possibly the country. Tens of thousands pour into the tiny town of Lincoln, where the games are hosted at the Loon Mountain ski resort. It's the single biggest weekend for the town; all of the hotels fill up; there's waits at every restaurant; and the roads become clogged with cars.

It's also the most exciting for those who enjoy Scottish stuff. There are multiple stages and houses for musical performances, including the central tent which can hold north of two thousand people. The food is also the most varied of the fairs. There's a tent with a frighteningly large pot of stew boiling away. There's sorta' traditional Scottish food. There's even some American food thrown in for good measure.

This sign sort of embodied the whole town for me.

A bridie and a meat pastry. The bridie was more like a meat turnover than others I've had. It was very flaky and hot. Otherwise, just standard Scottish festival food.

Ahh, the apple pastry. Pretty decent. Crispy, fresh-baked, and reaaaally pricey. Try $6.99 pricey. This and the macaroon cost over $14.

This was fun. You got the can and could refill it! Too bad the soda was watery as hell.

Sigh. American fair food just had to make its greasy way into the highlands.

They're Scottish eclairs. Got that? Scottish.

One of the dozen or so pipe bands.

Again, decent food. The meat pie was good, but the gravy was absurdly salty. The mashed potatoes were also dry.

This was the world's largest macaroon, and it better frickin' be. It was $7!

The sign to the best restaurant in Lincoln. A Quickview is forthcoming.

The epic vista of the river flowing under the access bridge to the games.

And to close it all up, a video of one of the most kick-ass Scottish bands in the world, Albannach. They play at the NH Highland Games almost every year.

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