The 37th Annual
& Highland Games
The 37th Annual
& Highland Games
The 37th Annual
& Highland Games
The Scottish Festival & Highland Games has activities and attractions for everyone – from the Caber Toss to Highland Dancing to the Dogs of Scotland. This family-friendly outdoor event is a chance to explore Scottish culture without buying a plane ticket. Plus, all proceeds benefit the Chicago Scots and Caledonia Senior Living & Memory Care.
Chicago Scots (The Illinois Saint Andrew Society) is the oldest not-for-profit in Illinois, founded in 1845. We proudly nourish Scottish identity through service, fellowship and celebration of Scottish culture in order to support our principal charity, Caledonia Senior Living & Memory Care.
There are two parking areas, General and Patron. General parking may be purchased ahead of time here or in person (CASH ONLY). Parking is $5 per day or $8 for the entire event. Handicap parking is available. If you need support to get from the parking to the main gate please ask a festival volunteer. Patron parking is only available for those with a Patron pass and is including in the Patron package pricing.
General admission hours are as follows:
Friday, June 16, 2023: 1:00 pm to 10:00 pm
Saturday, June 17, 2023: 9:00 am to 10:00 pm
Beer must be purchased and consumed on-site. Liquor control laws prohibit alcoholic beverages from being brought in from outside. Registered participants of the Scottish Festival & Highland Games may bring in coolers with non-alcoholic beverages. Coolers will be inspected by security at all gates and outside liquor will be disposed of. Those 21 and over must show ID and obtain a wristband in order to purchase liquor. Your compliance in these important liquor policies helps us be able to continue to host this event.
Outside Canopy and/or Tents
Festival attendees are permitted to bring in outside canopies, tents and chairs.
No outside food is allowed on festival grounds.
Paramedics are on-site.
Lost & Found
Report and/or retrieve lost children and items at the CHICAGO SCOTS Tent and our team of staff and volunteers will assist you in the necessary next steps. After the event is over, please feel free to notify us of any missing items. Please be aware that we are not in the office on Sunday, June 18th but we will respond to your messages when we return to the office.
The massed bands performance will begin at approximately 6:30 – after all piping and drumming judging is complete.
The festival is dog friendly! Well behaved dogs are welcome but must be leashed. Please curb your animals and kindly clean up after them. Please be mindful of small children and other dogs at the festival.
The Festival will proceed rain or shine. Tickets are non-refundable. This festival would only be cancelled due to life-threatening weather such as a tornado. In case of lightning, please return to your car or sheltered areas. DO NOT shelter under tents unless they are clearly signposted as grounded.
Tickets for the whisky masterclasses can be purchased at the main beverage/entertainment tent. ID is required to purchase.
Activities & Information
Use the links below to learn about activities and register to participate at the Scottish Festival & Highland Games.
Whisky Masterclass Seminars
Hotaling & Co., our Official Whisky Sponsor, will host three Whisky Masterclass Seminars with artisanal whiskies up to $250 per bottle.
Whisky Masterclass tickets are available for purchase at the main beverage and entertainment tent. Tickets are $50 and are limited to 50 people per seminar.
The Whisky Masterclasses will be held in the Culinary & Whisky Tent.
Witness incredible feats of strength & accuracy while watching classic, including the Caber Toss, Clachneart, Hammer Throw, Sheaf Toss & Weight Throws.
British Car Show
Admire the best of British engineering and vote for your favorite at the British Car Show on Saturday from 8:00am-4:00pm.
Dogs of Scotland
Meet these hardy breeds of Celtic canines and learn how they have aided Scots throughout the centuries.
Men in Kilts Contest
Root for your favorite kilted Laddie or strut your stuff yourself as our judges determine who has the knobbliest knees (Laddies ONLY).
Have fun with your kids as they meet a Clydesdale horse, learn to play cricket, play mini-versions of Scottish heavy athletics and miniature golf and more!
Research your Scottish heritage with help from the Chicago Scots’ Genealogy Group.
Stop by the Genealogy tent on the South Field.
Kick up your kilt as you jam to the various Celtic rock and local bands featured on the main stage.
Enter to win the Grand Prize — roundtrip airfare for two to Scotland & a 7-night stay in the Clock Tower of Culzean Castle.
Ticket can be purchased at the Chicago Scots tent throughout the weekend. Winner does not need to be present to win.
This year’s Wintrust Patron’s Tent is the ultimate way to enjoy the Scottish Festival and Highland Games!
Tickets are $200 per person for two days of Patron’s benefits.
Haggis Hurling Contest
Test your throwing skills and poise by hurling a frozen 1 pound haggis as far as you can, all while balancing on a half Whisky Barrel! Farthest throw is the champion. (Lassies Only)
Haggis Eating Contest
Come see which contestant can "down a pound" of this Scottish culinary delicacy the fastest or give it a try yourself! Contestants will east as much haggis as possible without using their hands.
Scottish Fiddle Competition
Join us for the Scottish Fiddle Competition and a Free Workshop in the North field near the Children's Area.
Signature Shortbread Contest
Bake up a batch of the "secret family recipe" or create your own original concoction in this competition of both traditional & flavored shortbread.
Chef Gary Maclean
Gary Maclean, National Chef of Scotland, will be performing three live complimentary cooking demonstrations in the Culinary & Whisky Tent at the 2023 Scottish Festival & Highland Games.
Piping & Drumming
Listen to the talented pipers and drummer at their very best as they compete for top solo and pipe band honors.
New this year, Grade-1 pipe band competition!
Visit the Highland Dance competition stage where dancers of all ages demonstrate this intricate and technically challenging sport.
Savor a variety of Scottish fare or sample an assortment of festival food on the North field.
Shop for clothing, crafts, collectibles and more from local merchants on the South field.
Clans & Organizations
Visit our community of Clans & Organizations who represent the great family names & traditions of Scotland and delight in the pageantry of the "Parade of Tartans" The word clan in Gaelic means "children of the family". In highland Scotland, a clan is an extended family or group of families.
The Heather Queen is a female between the ages of 15-20 years old who is Scottish by birth, has Scottish heritage and/or is actively involved in the Scottish community. During her reign, the Heather Queen serves as a goodwill ambassador for Chicago Scots by encouraging her peers to explore their Scottish or other cultural identities while promoting Scottish culture in Chicagoland.
Look for our reigning Heather Queen at this year's Games!