On October 13-14th, Kilts Are Encouraged. Not Required
Kilt Fest is a unique Scottish-Irish-Gaelic event with a medieval twist. This Celtic smash-up of food, beer, athletics, culture and music will be held at Liberty Lake Park in Bordentown, NJ on Saturday and Sunday October 13th and 14th.
Belhaven Brewing, River Horse Brewery, Mission BBQ and Investors Bank will be sponsoring this day of Gaelic culture, the largest festival of its kind in Central New Jersey.
Kilt Fest is being co-produced by The NJ Renaissance Faire and American Highlander Kilts, and it will feature historic reenactments by the Knights of Crossford engaging in kilted battles with swords and shields and axe throwing including a target throwing competition and a demonstration of Viking and Medieval Weapons.
Kilt Fest will be host to The New Jersey Highland Games on Saturday where male and female kilted athletes will compete in various feats of strength and agility culminating in the caber toss where athletes attempt to lift and flip end-over-end a 20 foot long heavy log. This year will also feature the first annual New Jersey Kids Highland Games where children can try their hands at various specially-designed, supervised highland events. For any adults who wish to learn how to perform highland games feats of strength and agility, athletes will be available to teach techniques and form on Sunday.
On Sunday morning, American Highlander will host the third annual 2-Mile Kilt Fun Run. In order to participate in the Kilt Run, all runners (or walkers) must register at KiltFestNJ.com, pay the entry fee and wear a kilt. Runners will also receive a special commemorative Kilt Fest T-shirt, drinks and snacks. Discounted running kilts for participants are available at americanhighlander.com. Although runners must wear kilts, pants are acceptable for those who want to watch the run and attend the rest of the weekend festival and concert.
This gathering of clans and Americans of Irish, Scottish, Celtic and Gaelic ancestry along with their friends and families will feature ten different Celtic bands on the main stage. Bagpipers from Lia Fail Pipes and Drums and The Kilted Rogues will be performing throughout the weekend as well. The band line-up includes top artists from New York, New Jersey and Pennsylvania including The Ogham Stones, Sean McNally and Sean Kelly, The Shantys, Diarmuid MacSuibhne & Kevin McCloskey, Charlie Zahm, The Celtic Rebels Band, The Kennedys, The John Byrne Band and The Kilted Rogues.
On Saturday and Sunday afternoon, appropriately attired men and women can take part in our Bonnie Legs Kilt Contest. Contestants will be judged by a learned panel of highland experts and rated for their appearance and energy while wearing their kilts. Prizes will be awarded to the winners in each category. as well as an Axe Throwing Competition and Demonstration and a Kilted Mini Golf Tournament.
Attendees of Kilt Fest can quench their thirst with Belhaven Stouts, Ales and IPAs or with various local, Celtic craft beers including offerings from River Horse Brewery in Ewing. For hungry Celts and Gaels, various Scottish and Irish delicacies will be available such as haggis, meat pies, fish and chips, Irish stew and scones as well as more traditional American foods such as burgers, dogs, chicken fingers cheese steaks and barbecue.
There is no dress code at Kilt Fest. Pants and Kilts are equally appropriate attire. Tickets at the gate on the weekend of Kilt Fest are $15 per day or $20 for a weekend pass but are available at a discount online at kiltfestnj.com. Members of the military, veterans, police, fire fighters, first responders, teachers, seniors, students and children ages 5 to 12 receive discount admission. Children under 5 are free. Parking at Liberty Lake is also free but a donation to Mission 22, a charitable organization that reaches out to our nation’s veterans, is encouraged. Proceeds from the festival will also benefit the Gaelic American Educational Learning Society (GAELS) which offers scholarships to area college students who demonstrate an interest in the influence in America of the Celts and Gaels. Scholarship applications will be available at Kilt Fest.