The Gathering at a Glance

The Pipers’ Gathering is a musical convention that features “alternative” bagpipes of all types. The word “alternative” is used to distinguish these pipes from the Great Highland bagpipe, commonly heard at weddings, funerals and parades and played by folks in kilts. Our event features many of the other bagpipe types found in the British Isles and Europe, including Northumbrian Smallpipes, Scottish Smallpipes, Irish Uilleann pipes, Border pipes and the many different variety of English pipes. Occasional appearances are made by gaitas, gaidas, binou kozh, zampognas, and the like. Participants at The Gathering are exposed to the broad range of these fascinating instruments, as well as people who play and make them.

The Gathering begins on Friday afternoon with informal workshops, pipes “fettling” and low-key time with instructors. Friday evening is a formal “meet and greet”, followed by sessions. Saturday and Sunday days are dedicated to hands-on piping classes, lecture-demonstrations and workshops by led by instructors, vendors and special guests. There are ongoing traditional Irish sessions and plenty of spontaneous jamming. A highlight of the event is the ability to meet and play with musicians of many backgrounds, in groups which constantly form and reform throughout the facility. Activities cater to all levels of piper, from beginner to advanced, and rental instruments are available for those just starting out.

Some of the finest pipe makers in the world frequent The Pipers’ Gathering. It is one of the few places to go in North America if you want to try out and order one of these musical instruments. Vendors also offer hard-to-find items related to this type of piping, including CDs, music, books and pipe supplies.

Saturday and Sunday evenings feature concerts by our world-class line-up of instructors. Come treat yourself and the whole family to a new world of traditional music.