Dec 1, 2018

December 2018

ALASTAIR LEE on December 15!

Join your friends on December 15 for the amazing Alastair Lee as our featured performer and judge!

Alastair started with the Robert Malcolm Memorial Pipe Band. Joining SFU in 2008, he was privileged to win the Grade 1 World Pipe Band Championship in his first two tries (2008 & 2009). In concert, Alastair can be seen playing both pipes and keyboards.

As well, solo pipe competition has been a focus for Alastair. In Scotland he is now in the Former Winners MSR at Oban as well as the Gold Medal for Piobaireachd at Oban and Inverness. Alastair also plays for highland dancing on a regular basis.

In his private life Alastair graduated with honours in 2013 from the Art Institute of Vancouver in professional sound engineering. He currently works full-time at the well-known Scottish importing firm Tartantown Ltd. as a bagpipe technician, shipper and sales associate.

Celtic Christmas will be our band!

Jeanine R. Orme is a classically trained violinist who has specialized in old-time fiddling, Texas-style fiddling, bluegrass fiddle, and Western swing. She is the 2014 Oregon State Adult Division Fiddle Champion and regularly competes in regional and national fiddle contests. Jeanine is the author of three music collections for Mel Bay Publications, Inc.: The Fiddlin’ Workshop, Herman Johnson-Master Fiddler and Texas-Style Fiddlin’ Workshop. Jeanine was born in Ogden, Utah. She began playing the violin at age five and started fiddling at age 8, performing with the Utah Old-Time Fiddlers. 

Dan Velasquez is a multi-talented musician who plays guitar, bass, and piano and composes and arranges music as well.  He grew up in Mexico and California, and graduated with degrees in Computer Science and Music Education from Gonzaga University.  He can recite all of the Monty Python skits and movies word for word.  He currently teaches electronics and computer programming at Southridge High School.  His love of Celtic music comes honestly, as his grandmother was born in Ireland.

Jayne Ferlitsch grew up loving the bagpipe music her father played, but didn't start learning the pipes until she turned 50.  She began studying piano at age 8, then added the flute at age 10.  She loves picking up instruments and also plays various flutes, keyboards, banjo and percussive instruments.  She competes often at OPS and plays with the Clan Macleay Pipes and Drums. She is a librarian at Southridge High School.

Celtic Christmas is a trio of Beaverton School District friends who play together during the Christmas season for charitable events.

Eric Albert will entertain us with at least one of his lovely piobaireachds as the Local Hero!
As a youth, Eric received an LP from his mother--Scottish Bagpipe Tunes including, "Lament for the Children," recorded by James McColl in 1958. The LP galvanized his interest in Piobaireachd and despite a late start at 27 years old, he quickly took to the pipes receiving excellent tuition from Don Lindsay, Iain Donaldson, Jake Watson, James MacGillivray and Willie McCallum. Attending the graduate business program at Carnegie Mellon University in Pittsburgh afforded a close piping relationship with Jimmy McIntosh and Alasdair Gillies.

Although his passion is rooted in Piobaireachd, Eric has played in numerous bands including 6 years with the Oran Mor Pipe Band under PM Donald Lindsay, P/M of his local New York Grade 3 pipe band Feadan Or, and currently PM of the Eugene Highlanders.

Competing at the grade 1 level, Eric plays a vintage set of 1921 Lawries, with a Shepard M2 Blackwood chanter and custom Mark Lee rocket reeds that deliver a consistant warm and balanced tone .

Eric travels frequently, specifying flight deck equipment for commercial and GA aircraft manufacturers. Married to Krysta with three grown daughters and Liam--a seven-year-old who loves pipes but prefers the caber toss!

Good food, good music, good friends! 

Nathan Walgren who is proud to play a pipe even while wearing an ugly sweater

Recap of November's Gathering

November Oregon Pipers Society

Patrick Downing was the adjudicator and featured performer for November's gathering on November 17, 2018.  

Patrick took his judging very seriously...

...but was then able to entertain the crowd with a selection of marches, jigs, hornpipes and Gordon Duncan tunes!
Patrick Downing and Will Beattie have it all under control
Eliot Grasso was also a featured performer and not only performed on the Uilleann pipes, but also whistle and flute!
Eilot warming up

Always a treat to hear the Uileann Pipes played so well!

Local Hero John Goff proved once again that Loud Pipes Save Lives!

The Competition

Flint Yoder competes in Grade 4...

...even though his wife Roseanne was in active labor.
  Congratulations to the Yoders on the birth of their son!
With her friend watching,
 Shara Maikranz competes on pipes
 for the first time in Adult class and wins!

Tim Riddle takes a 1st in Grade 4 and plays for comments in Grade 3

Kenneth Aitken is all smiles after competing in Grade 5

Oct 5, 2018

The 2018 - 2019 Season is Underway

Oregon Pipers Society is excited for the new year of competition. We're still lining up performers, bands and local heroes, but our dates have been set.

October 20, 2018
November 17, 2018
December 15, 2018
January 19, 2019
February 16, 2019
March 23, 2019
April 13, 2019 (a week earlier due to Easter and the BC Indoor)

Competitors, please check out the COMPETITORS INFO page for the competition list.

Apr 28, 2018

Thanks for a Great Season

See You Next Year for Another Terrific Season of Piping and Drumming!

We had a wonderful final OPS gathering of our season, and are so grateful to our members and friends who attended our events this year.

Murray Huggins

John Goff

Clan Macleay Pipe Band

Don't forget to check out our volunteering and sponsorship opportunities, scholarship info, and facebook page for more information (and the date of our volunteer appreciation/planning event!).

Apr 14, 2018

Final Gathering of the Season!

Join us at our final gathering of the season on April 21st!

The OPS Team is proud to welcome members and friends to our last monthly meeting of the 2017-2018 season. As usual, our event begins with solo competition at 4:30, followed by a great evening of Scottish piping and drumming by the Clan Macleay Pipe Band, John Goff, and Murray Huggins. The show starts at 7:30 at The OddFellows Hall, 10282 SE Main St. Milwaukie OR, 97222.

Our Pipe Band will be the Clan MacLeay Pipe Band

From Portland, the Clan Macleay Pipe Band is comprised of male and female members from Oregon and Southwest Washington.  Formed shortly after World War I, the “Clan Band” is one of the oldest continually existing pipe bands in North America. The band is always a hit  at OPS and is now led by excellent local piper and friend of OPS Thomas Peralta.

Featured Performer Murray Huggins

Our featured performer is Murray Huggins. A native of Ashland, Oregon, Murray has enjoyed a long piping career. He began as a boy receiving instruction from Scottish piper William Keddie. His piping style is influenced by Cameron Wylie, Seattle and Jimmy McColl, Florence, Oregon. Murray is the proprietor of Colin Kyo bagpipes where he hand crafts every detail of the Highland bagpipe including reeds, metal forming and hand engraving. Murray also provides hand engraved metal fittings to bagpipe makers throughout the world.

As if that wasn't enough, our April Local Hero piping recitalist is John Goff (Cascadia Piper). John Goff is a multifaceted artist and piper with a rich and varied musical background. We are excited to have him back as our Local Hero!

As usual, OPS volunteers will offer an exceptional menu of homemade soup, salad, pizza, and beverages. It's sure to be a wonderful night and is perfect for the whole family.

We'll see you AND the whole family at OPS on Saturday April 21st! Sláinte!

Scholarship Deadline Extended!

A quick note about our scholarshipsWe are offering three $500 scholarships this year and have decided to extend the application deadline through tomorrow, April 15th to accommodate anyone who may have missed the information. Applicants get one ticket in the drawing per OPS competition they have participated in over the past year. The will be awarded by drawing at OPS on the 21st so don't miss it!

Mar 3, 2018

Come to OPS on March 10th!

Oregon Pipers Society invites YOU to join us for an evening of Celtic music and community fun that your whole family will enjoy! We are holding our March gathering THIS Saturday, March 10th!

Our location is the OddFellows Hall in downtown Milwaukie, and this event welcomes all ages. We offer admission of only $5 for OPS members and $10 for non-members. Kids 12 and under get in free! Click here to become a member today. The event will commence at 4:30 pm with our piping and drumming competition. Come enjoy our competitors putting on their best possible performance or sign up yourself! Full details are available on our competition info page.

At 7:30 our formal evening program begins. Come hungry - there will be food and beverages available for purchase throughout the evening, including pizza, salad, beer, wine, and scotch!

Featured Piper Erik Leiken

Erik Leiken, from Davis, CA, started piping at the age of eight years old and started competing in 1998, becoming a professional player in 2009. Erik has been a member of Prince Charles, Alameda Co. Sheriff's, Kevin R. Blandford Memorial, LA Scots, and Peel Regional Police Pipe Bands, and is currently the Pipe Major of Dunvegan Pipe Band and Pipe Sergeant of the newly-formed Silicon Valley Pipe Band. Erik has studied under David Parkhurst, Bill Merriman, Archie Cairns, John Cairns, Angus J. MacLellan, Bruce Hitchings, Jimmy Young, but primarily under Ozzie Reid.
Erik is the proprietor of Leiken Reeds, personally manufacturing a range of reeds, and he teaches extensively in Northern California.

Erik Leiken

Channing Dodson and Brongaene Griffin

Prior to our featured piper, OPS is excited to welcome Channing Dodson, an excellent local player of both Uilleann (Irish) pipes and highland pipes, and fiddler Bronnie Griffin. Bronnie Griffin is a contemporary fiddler steeped in the Irish tradition and has shared the stage with Kevin Burke, Johnny B. Connolly, Nancy Conescu, Gerry O'Beirne, and John Williams, among others. This promises to be the perfect way to kick off your Saint Patrick's Day month!

Channing Dodson

We look forward to seeing you on March 10th!

Feb 10, 2018

Join Us for OPS On February 17th

February brings another outstanding night of music and fun at Oregon Pipers Society! The show starts at 7:30 at The OddFellows Hall, 10282 SE Main St. Milwaukie OR, 97222.

The event will commence at 4:30pm with our piping and drumming competition. Come enjoy our competitors putting on their best possible performance or sign up yourself! Full details are available on our competition info page.

At 7:30pm our official evening program begins. Bring the family and come hungry - there will be food and beverage available for purchase throughout the evening, including pizza, salad, beer, wine, scotch, and homemade soup!

Our location is the OddFellows Hall in downtown Milwaukie, our monthly event welcomes all ages. We offer admission of only $5 for OPS members and $10 for non-members. Kids 12 and under get in free! Click here to become a member today.

Featured Performer

Our featured piper is James P. Troy. James is a great friend of OPS and we are very glad to have him return as our piping judge and recitalist.
James P. Troy has an extensive background as a soloist and band musician. As a professional solo player of both the pipes and snare drum, he is equally at home with both. James P. began both piping and drumming at age six, studying piping with his father, James W. Troy, and drumming with his uncle, Colin Magee. At age eleven, he joined the renowned City of Victoria Pipe Band, being the youngest member of a Grade One band at the time.  James P. was a member of the Spirit of Scotland Pipe Band (as a drummer) under the direction of PM Roddy MacLeod and DS John Fisher in 2008 and most recently a piper in the Inveraray and District Pipe Band in 2011. In addition to his extensive band experience, James P. has won numerous prizes throughout Canada, the United States and the UK as a soloist. He is a member of the British Columbia Pipers’ Association adjudicators’ panel. James P. has become well known for the quality of his seminars for both pipers and drummers and is a valued resource for pipe band players. He presents seminars on ensemble concepts, reed manipulation and technique in both disciplines at major workshops and summer programs in the United States and Canada on a regular basis.
James P. Troy

Pipe Band Performance

Our pipe band will be a crowd favorite - the Portland Metro Pipe Band. Founded in 2006, the band consists of pipers and drummers from all over the Pacific Northwest. The band plays competitions and performances and OPS is very glad to welcome them back to our stage! For more information about Portland Metro Pipe Band, visit their website.

Local Hero

We are very excited to welcome Jack Toohey as our Local Hero recitalist. Jack is a Grade 1 piper who places consistently among the best pipers in the Northwest and beyond. Jack receives light instruction from his father, John Toohey, and piobaireachd instruction from OPS board member Colin MacKenzie. When not piping Jack enjoys hanging out with his friends and his active in his youth group. Jack also teaches lessons and performs throughout the Portland region. You won't want to miss Jack's performance on the 17th!

We look forward to seeing you on February 17th!

Jan 7, 2018

Welcome the new year with OPS on Saturday, January 20th!

OPS Invites you to celebrate the new year with an outstanding evening of Scottish entertainment! The show starts at 7:30 at The OddFellows Hall, 10282 SE Main St. Milwaukie OR, 97222.

Our piping and drumming competition begins at 4:30pm. This is a great option for kids and adults who are interested in learning the pipes or drums to see Oregon's piping community come together in the spirit of continuous improvement and great music.

The evening program begins at 7:30pm. There will be food and beverage available for purchase throughout the evening, including pizza, salad, beer, wine, scotch, and homemade soup!

Our location is the OddFellows Hall in downtown Milwaukie, our monthly event welcomes all ages. We offer admission of only $5 for OPS members and $10 for non-members. Kids 12 and under get in free! Click here to become a member today.

Featured Performer

Zephan Knichel
Our featured piper is Zephan Knichel!

Originally from Edmonton, Alberta Zephan began piping in 1999 as an Air Cadet with the 570 RCACS Pipe Band. The following year Zephan joined the Edmonton Boys Pipe Band. As a member of the Edmonton Boys, Zephan won the 2002 World Championships in the Novice Juvenille category. In 2003 Zephan joined the grade one Alberta Caledonia Pipe Band, of which he was an active member until 2013. Zephan also enjoyed stints in grade 2 with the St. Thomas Alumni Pipe Band in 2011 and the Viscount Park Pipe Band in 2014. Zephan joined SFU for the 2014-2015 season.Zephan is also a regular competitor in open solo competitions. His most noteworthy prize to date was winning the overall aggregate prize at the 2016 BCPA Annual Gathering.
Zephan moved to BC in 2014 after graduating summa cum laude from Monmouth College in Illinois with a degree in Business Administration; Receiving a full tuition talent scholarship for Bagpiping to attend Monmouth. Zephan is a sought after private instructor and also teaches the Robert Malcolm Memorial  grade 5 band. He currently works for both Coast Capital Savings as an FSR and for Lee and Sons Bagpipes making pipebags and chanter reeds. 
Highland Dance Performance

Also joining us will be an OPS favorite - dancers from Portland Highland Dance Association! Their mission is "To Foster and Preserve the Art of Scottish Highland Dance." The PHDA provides quality instruction and hosts competitions and workshops that benefit many dancers in the area. We are delighted to feature them this month on the OPS stage!

Local Hero

As if that wasn't enough, January Local Hero piping recitalist is Lacy Campbell - Lacy is a regular participant in our monthly competitions and a great friend of OPS. We love featuring our Local Heroes and highland dancers because it gives spectators an idea of what we are all about - fostering continued excellence in (and your enjoyment of) the Scottish arts.

We look forward to seeing you on the January 20th!

Dec 10, 2017

THIS WEEKEND - Jack Lee will perform for us at OPS!

Come to OPS on December 16 - We guarantee an outstanding evening of music, friends, and Scottish Culture! The show starts at 7:30 at The OddFellows Hall, 10282 SE Main St. Milwaukie OR, 97222.

Our local hero is Sam Toohey. Sam won the British Columbia Pipers Association (BCPA) Grand Aggregate award for Grade 2 last year. We are thrilled to have Sam as our Local Hero recitalist! (Note: Lacy Campbell will be our Local Hero recitalist next month!)

Our pipe band performance will be delivered by the Eugene Highlanders Pipe Band. A little about the band:

The Eugene Highlanders began in 1953 under the direction of P/M Hector Smith who served as pipe major for over fifty years. They continue in that spirit to keep the music flowing, bringing history alive and carrying bagpiping, highland drumming and dancing forward as a living art form. Eugene Highlanders plays at Highland Games and other celtic events around the region and have proudly led the Eugene Celebration parade for many years.

Above: Eugene Highlanders in action!

Our adjudicator and featured performer will be the one and only Jack Lee! Jack is a renowned solo competitor, teacher, Pipe Sergeant of the six-time world champion Simon Fraser University Pipe Band, and is among the world's greatest pipers. Along with his family, Jack runs Lee and Sons Bagpipes. Jack is also the reigning champion at the Glenfiddich Solo Piping Championship which he won earlier this year.

Admission is $10 for non-members and $5 for members. In addition to our great performers, you can enjoy food and drinks served by our wonderful OPS volunteers! Our December menu will include:
A) Vegetable Beef Barley
B) Carrot, Corn, and Corriander
Salad Dressings:
1) Balsamic Vinaigrette
2) Honey Mustard
3) Creamy Blue Cheese
4) Paprika Vinaigrette

Pizza, snacks, soft drinks, beer, wine, and Scotch is also available for purchase!