Here's to Haggis!

Jan 22, 2015

haggis, robbie burns, robbie burns night, robbie burns day, scottish, rabbie burns, rabbie burns night, robbie burns celebrations, robbie burns night grande prairie, robbie burns night fort st john, grande prairie, peace countryRabbie Burns loved three things in life; words, women, and large sausages filled with organ meats. On or around January 25th, the anniversary of his birthday, those who love Rabbie Burns, love Scotland, or just love to have a good time gather together for the time-honoured tradition of the Burns Supper – an evening of poetry, good food and drink, and a celebration of the Scot in all of us.

Robbie (or Rabbie) Burns was born the poor son of a poor farmer in 1759. He suffered from poor health most of his life and died at the age of 37. He was also one of Scotland’s more prolific, and certainly most influential, poets of all time. To this day his poem Auld Lang Syne is still spoken or sung by multitudes every New Year, and Address to a Haggis is probably the best recognized food-based poem in existence.

Burns Suppers are ostensibly a celebration of Burns’ birthday, but over the years they have taken on the air of an unofficial (and arguably more popular) Scottish National Day. There is no set protocol for a Burns Supper, although there are some traditional elements that most organizers try to include. Generally these traditions consist of serving both haggis (Great chieftain o the puddin’ -race!) and Scotch whisky, and reciting Burns’ poetry.

If you’re organising your own Burns Supper, or just want to try haggis in private, here is a basic recipe to follow, courtesy the BBC. If you’d rather spend Burns Night in the company of others, or if you’d rather try a professionally prepared haggis before attempting that recipe, there are a couple of options in the Peace Country – both on the evening of January 24th.

In Grande Prairie, the Grande Prairie Golf & Country Club is hosting a Robbie Burns Night scotch tasting and dinner.  The scotch tasting starts at 5 p.m., and the dinner at 7 p.m. Tickets are $20 for just the tasting and $35 for both.

In Fort St. John, the Knights of Columbus, the Shriners, and the Masons present the Robbie Burns Dinner and Dance. Held at the Immaculata Hall, it will feature a full haggis dinner, guest speakers and readers, a pipe band, DJ and dance. Tickets are $60, cocktails start at 6 p.m. and dinner at 7 p.m.

This Burns Night, we hope you’ll come out to raise a dram and toast the haggis. To learn more about the Robbie Burns Night celebrations, check out the events calendar.


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