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“Catch the Moments as they Fly”


Photo story by Dick Baznik



The 254th anniversary of the birthday of Scotland’s favorite poet, Robert Burns, was the occasion for a lively gathering on January 25. A full house of residents and guests were treated to the traditional ceremony of piping in, praying over, and cutting open the haggis, and a dinner featuring a number of items from the British isles.


The evening began with attendees marching from the Heiser Lounge to the Friends Corner dining room, led by bagpiper Glen Wright. The program featured music by Mr. Wright, as well as an after-dinner sing-along in the lounge. Discussion covered the difference between a “tartan” (the pattern found on traditional Celtic clothing) and a “plaid” (the piece of cloth bearing the pattern), and explanations of the bagpiper’s instrument and his “sporran” — the decorated pouch that a kilted piper wears hanging from his (or her) belt.


Pam and Ben Lenz led the planning for the event, as they have in each of the past several years, and Joyce Parker served as mistress of ceremonies.

Escorted by Pam Lenz (left), piper Glen Wright leads a parade of residents toward the Friends Dining Room in the Stephens Care Center for a pre-dinner visit.

Kendal chef Scot Stonestreet wheels this year’s “haggis,” a Scottish delicacy, into the Heiser Lounge for the formal beginning of the evening’s dinner program.

Speaking in respectful if merry tones, Margaret-Ann Ellis addresses the haggis in the pre-dinner ceremony.

After delivering a lengthy reading in Scots, the language of Burns, Jay Ingersoll watches as Chef Stonestreet slices open the haggis.

Joyce Parker serves as the evening’s mistress of ceremonies, weaving together Scottish lore and introducing speakers.

Ben Lenz, who with his wife Pam led the planning for the annual Robert Burns dinner, speaks to guests as part of the after-dinner program.

During the comments-and-questions portion of the after-dinner program, Joanne Busiel offers information about Scottish customs.

Outfitted in kilt, tartan, and tweed, Bob McClusky speaks about Scottish traditions after dinner.

Presenting the very image of the well-attired gentleman, Scott Orcutt explains the distinctions among Scottish customs.

Don Parker delivers the final reading of the after-dinner program.

The big surprise of the evening’s program is Ed Schwaegerle’s rendition – in costume – of “Breakfast in Bed” by Sir Harry Lauder, famed Scottish performer of the early 20th century. He is accompanied on the guitar by Jane Hannauer.

The evening ends with songs performed and led by George and Jane Hannauer.