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JUNEAU - It's an odd year, but Celtic arts fans in Juneau will still hold a celebration in honor of Scottish poet Robert Burns' birthday.
Juneau celebrates Robert Burns' 250th birthday with Celtic music festival 012109 AE 2 CCW Staff Writer JUNEAU - It's an odd year, but Celtic arts fans in Juneau will still hold a celebration in honor of Scottish poet Robert Burns' birthday.

Photo Courtesy Of Mike Barnhill

Celtic rock band Fire on McGinnis will perform at the Celtic music festival Jan. 23 at the Juneau Arts and Culture center. The evening's festivities are in celebration of the 250th birthday of Robert Burns, "Scotland's favourite poet." Admission is $5 at the door, and music by a variety of groups will run from 7:30 p.m. until midnight.

Wednesday, January 21, 2009

Story last updated at 1/21/2009 - 11:45 am

Juneau celebrates Robert Burns' 250th birthday with Celtic music festival

JUNEAU - It's an odd year, but Celtic arts fans in Juneau will still hold a celebration in honor of Scottish poet Robert Burns' birthday.

It is usually only in years ending with an even number that a banquet is held in Burns' honor - featuring traditional Scottish fare, music, dancing, and beer, of course. On odd-numbered years, Juneau's Burns fans typically take a break. However, 2009 is a special year for Burns. If he were still alive today, on Jan. 25 he would celebrate his 250th birthday.

At Glasgow University in Scotland, a three-day celebration last weekend included lectures, discussions, and events in honor of "Scotland's favourite poet."

In Juneau, the celebrations will take place on Friday, Jan. 23, at the Juneau Arts and Culture Center. The all-ages event will feature music, dancing, drinks, food and more. The music is scheduled to run constantly from 7:30 p.m. to midnight with a little surprise birthday tribute for Burns thrown in the middle.

"We have something up our sleeves," said Mike Barnhill, a member of the Celtic rock band Fire on McGinnis and one of the main event coordinators.

The musical lineup will start with the Stroller White Pipes & Drums, followed by contra dancing called by Tom Paul with A Blessing in Disguise. The Scottish Highland Dancers will also perform, followed by Michael and Carraig New with Great Highland Bagpipes, and Tramwreck.

The night will end with sets by Henry Hopkins, Chris Behnke, and Andy Ferguson on bagpipes, and Fire on McGinnis will headline with a non-stop set that should last until at least midnight.

There will be a cash bar hosted by the Hangar featuring Scottish beers and single malt Scotch. In addition, food vendors will be doing their best to replenish dancers' calories. Temporary tattoo artist Brian Lupro will also be present applying airbrush tattoos in the Celtic style.

Guests are encouraged to wear kilts, plaid, or any other Scottish attire they can muster. Admission is $5 at the door.


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