Dec 12, 2016

Join us on December 17, 2016

Special this month - a special Whisky Tasting assortment! At the front desk you can buy 5 tastings of premier single malt Scottish whiskies for only $20! There will also be a dedicated pouring table, then sip and enjoy at your own pace throughout the evening.

We welcome back Alastair Lee as our featured performer! Alastair started with the Robert Malcolm Memorial Pipe Band. Joining Simon Fraser University Pipe Band in 2008, he was privileged to win the Grade 1 World Pipe and 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.

Piping and drumming competition begins at 4:30pm and entertainment begins at 7:30pm.  Food and beverage will be available for purchase throughout the evening, including pizza, salad, bread, and delicious homemade Curry Pumpkin soup! You can wet your palate with Scottish Ales, Oregon beer and wine, or a soft drink. 

Admission is $5 for members and $10 for non-members. Kids 12 and under are Free One free admission is given with your new or renewed membership. Get the membership form here!

OPS needs your help! Consider us for your end of year donation (it is tax deductible!) It is with your ongoing support that make it possible for us to provide scholarships, workshops and great entertainment. Email the OPS Business Manager, Will (beattie.will@gmail.comfor details or bring your donation check on Saturday.

Nov 15, 2016

Join us for OPS this Saturday!

Piping and drumming competition begins at 4:30pm and entertainment begins at 7:30pm.  Food and beverage will be available for purchase throughout the evening, including pizza, salad, bread, and delicious homemade onion soup! You can wet your palate with Scottish Ales, Oregon beer and wine, or a soft drink.

Our featured performer is Alexander Schiele.

Alex began playing bagpipes at age 8 with instructor Kevin Auld. He plays with the 8th ranked pipe band in the world, Dowco Triumph Street Pipe Band.

An accomplished solo piper, most recently Alex made it to the final round of the 2014 BCPA Pro Knockouts in his first year entering the event as a professional piper, placing 3rd overall. He placed 2nd as an invited amateur in the 2013 BCPA Professional Knockout first round, out of 11 professional competitors and was promoted to professional in February, 2013, winning one of his first events at the BCPA Annual Gathering March 30, 2013. He finished his first professional season ranked 7th.

Alex was promoted to Grade 1 at age 13, the youngest of all grade 1 Amateur pipers in Washington/Oregon and British Columbia at the time in the British Columbia Pipers' Association.

Portland Highland Dancers will also be joining us!

We are please to have the Portland Highland Dancers perform for us! The Portland Highland Dance Association was founded in 1958 to create in our area a greater interest in Scottish traditions and Highland dance. PHDA's purpose is to foster and preserve the art of Scottish Highland Dance. 

PHDA hosts dance competitions and workshops in the Portland area. Dancers range in ages and dance levels. These dedicated and talented dancers will perform a variety of traditional Highland dances. 

Bring your friends and introduce them to the Oregon Pipers Society! Admission is $5 for members and $10 for non-members. Kids 12 and under are Free.

Oct 26, 2016

Thanks for Attending the October Gathering!

Thank you to all who attended our first gathering of the season on October 15th! The event was very successful with a great turnout despite bad weather throughout the region.

Murray Huggins

A special thanks goes to our featured piper and judge Murray Huggins! Murray delivered a great recital on a beautiful set of his own hand-crafted pipes and shared many entertaining stories with the audience.

Thanks also to Dram & Go and our Local Hero Nate Wahlgren for making the evening special.

If you weren't able to attend, you can find a great set of photos from the evening on our facebook page. Please hit 'Like' on our page while you are there!

You can also view our results on the Results Page.

Please join us for our next gathering on November 19!

Oct 19, 2016

Welcome to our two new Board Members!

Oregon Pipers Society has always been very informally organized, relying on the generous time and support of countless volunteers. This past year we had some open slots on the OPS Board of Directors.

Micah Babinski
Congratulations to our two new Board Members - Micah Babinski and Deborah Lyon! These two have been rockstar volunteers for years and we are so pleased to have them on the OPS Board. 

Micah has been involved with Oregon Pipers Society for over a decade as a competitor, judge, attendee, drone tuner, and overall fan. He has also performed at OPS gatherings as a solo piper and with his band, Dram & Go.

Micah shares OPS' dedication to fostering Scottish culture in the Portland area, especially among kids and young adults. Micah lives in Portland with his wife, Quinn.

Deb joined the Oregon Pipers Society 3 years ago, when her son joined the PMYPB as it's bass drummer.  Her daughter dances and plays the tenor drum in the youth band as well.

A former dancer and piping groupie, she grew up in a very active Scottish social community in Spokane and was thrilled to find the same kind of spirit at OPS.  She's been hooked ever since.

Deborah Lyon
Deb loves working with the competitors and judges as the OPS steward, and is honored to serve on the board.  She lives in Lake Oswego with the aforementioned twins, Will and Alex.

Our current Board of Directors is: Kevin Kelley, Colin MacKenzie, Will Beattie, Barbara Valenti, Suvi Chisholm, Micah Babinski, Deborah Lyon.

We thank our volunteers for their work and dedication to OPS! Wanna join the fun? Contact to inquire about volunteer opportunities.

Oct 10, 2016

OPS 30th Season begins on October 15, 2016

Come to OPS and listen to some wonderful Scottish music. We are celebrating our 30th season! Thank you to everyone who has been part of this journey and welcome to new friends joining us for the first time!

You are welcome to watch the piping and drumming competition beginning at 4:30pm. The evening's entertainment begins at 7:30pm. There will be food and beverage available for purchase throughout the evening.  Including pizza, salad, bread, and homemade soup. Beverages include Scottish Ales, Oregon beer and wine, and soft drinks.

Held at the OddFellows Hall in downtown Milwaukie, our monthly event welcomes all ages.  Only $5 for OPS members. $10 for non-members. Kids 12 and under get in free!  One free admission is given with your new or renewed membership. Click here to become a member today.

Featured Performer

Murray Huggins
The featured performer of the night 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.

Band Performance

Dram & Go
The fantastic celtic trio Dram & Go will play a set for us as well.  We are pleased to have Dram and Go back to OPS this year, and you can read more about them and check out some tunes from their 2015 album.

Founded early in 2014, Dram & Go features a fresh take on traditional Celtic music. With piper Micah Babinski (lowland pipes, smallpipes, mandolin), Rachel Bowen (fiddle), Anton Emery (guitar, flute, and banjo), and featuring Richie Rosencrans (guitar, bouzouki) of Na Rosai, Dram & Go has been busy harnessing the raw foot-stomping energy found at the intersection of Scottish piping, old-time fiddle, Irish Sessions, and bluegrass.

Local Hero

Nate Wahlgren
Corvallis resident Nate Wahlgren returns as local hero, always happy to support local piping. Being the sentimental sort, he likes to mark milestones, and next month will be celebrating the date when he will have been playing pipes for half of his life.

He learned his piping on the east coast, where he lived all of his life until moving to Oregon in 2012. He joined the Portland Metro Pipe Band shortly after arriving, and has played four seasons with them. His solo competition career began in earnest in 2004, and he moved up through the amateur ranks until he was promoted to grade 1 following the 2009 season.

Shortly afterwards he was bitten by the piobaireachd bug, and it's his favorite thing to play whenever he picks up his pipes. If you're nice to him, he might play a tune for you. If you're not nice to him, he might inflict a tune upon you.

Sep 28, 2016

Scholarship Winner - Jon Copper

Each year OPS is proud to sponsor music scholarships for pipers and drummers who have participated in OPS competitions throughout the year.  One of our scholarship winners, Jon Copper, shared with us a little bit about his piping experiences. Find out how you can qualify to win an OPS scholarship!

I wish to thank Oregon Pipers Society for this opportunity. I have found that I enjoy piping for adventure. While sailing or hiking. Most of all to support athletes of endurance events, such as Worlds Toughest Mudder. A 24 hour military style obstacle course race, where top athletes put in 90 plus miles. I pipe for 24hrs and put in 15-20 miles for these events.  
During these events I have experienced many equipment failures. Being a relatively new piper, little things are big things to me. I would like to learn how to fine tune reeds, chanters, & drones to improve the sound. Most band practices don't have enough time to dedicate to the depth which I desire.  
I'm looking for an instructor who understands piping for an extended amount of time, and in extreme weather conditions.  
Jon Copper

Sep 7, 2016

2016-2017 Competition Calendar

Download the PDF here.

Competitors may pay $5.00 at the door on the day of competition, or you may prepay for competition by mail, by sending a check and a completed Competition Registration form to:

Barbara Valenti

c/o Oregon Piper's Society
19695 SW Anderson St.
Aloha, OR  97078

Arrive by 4:00pm to sign up. Competition begins at 4:30.  Join us on these dates:

October 15, 2016
November 19, 2016
December 17, 2016
January 21, 2017
February 18, 2017 - Annual Workshop
March 25, 2017
April 22, 2017

Questions? Email Barbara,

Aug 18, 2016

Your participation is crucial in growing a strong piping and drumming community in Oregon. Thank you so much to all our competitors and a special thanks to all the amazing performers who joined us this past season.

Here's what you can do next:
See you at the first OPS of the season on October 15, 2016!

Aug 17, 2016

Sign up to get the latest news and events!

Join Oregon Pipers Society at our monthly gatherings to support pipers and drummers, meet new friends, and enjoy an evening of great entertainment!

By way of monthly events held from October through April each year, OPS has hosted programs featuring competitions, workshops, and recitals or performances by local players, pipe bands, as well as top pipers from the region and throughout the world. OPS also strives to help young local pipers and drummers by providing annual scholarships.

Sign up by email to get information about upcoming events!

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May 12, 2016

Thank You!

Thank you to everyone who has made this season's competitions, performances, and workshop possible!

Thanks to all the people who have attended an OPS event. Your participation is crucial to supporting a strong piping and drumming community in Oregon. Congratulations to all the competitors this year and good luck in all your summer competitions!

Want to be more involved or support OPS? Volunteer positions are available (and a lot of fun)!

Thank you!

See our Facebook page for more photos from this season. And while you're there.... LIKE us too!

Apr 26, 2016

OPS End of the Season Shindig!

Join us on May 7th for an OPS End of the Season Shindig!

All volunteers, members and Scottish music enthusiasts are encouraged to attend. This meeting will include a Board of Directors Meeting, wrap up of the past season and planning session for next season.

Downstairs at the pub is reserved for OPS, food and drinks will be available for purchase, and there may even be some bagpiping.

Please send any questions, concerns or items for the agenda to:

See you there!

Apr 25, 2016

April OPS was a lot of fun! Thank you so much to everyone who competed this year and a special thanks to all the amazing performers who joined us this season.

Congratulations to our scholarship winners! See the list here.

See the April competition results and this season's aggregate results.

Check out more photos on our Facebook page!

Apr 10, 2016

Sellwood Bridge Closure

BRIDGE CLOSURE: Please note that on Saturday, April 16 the Sellwood Bridge will be closed to motor vehicles from 7 am on Saturday, April 16 to 6 am on Monday, April 18 for construction work.

The closest alternative bridges for crossing the river are the Ross Island Bridge or Oregon City Bridge. See you for the last OPS of the season!
We have only one OPS left of the season on April 16th. Join us for a fun evening! 

Entertainment begins at 7:30pm. There will be food and beverage available for purchase throughout the evening.  Including pizza, salad, bread, and homemade soup. Beverages include Scottish Ales, Oregon beer and wine, and soft drinks.

The Pipe Band will be the The Portland Metro Youth Pipe Band (PMYPB).

PMYPB is made up of bagpipers and drummers ages 8 to 18 years from the Portland and Vancouver area.

These dedicated children and young adults attend band practice weekly, take private lessons with professional instructors, and utilize regular practice in preparation for Highland Game competitions.

The band's mission is to promote and advance the learning and performance of highland music, through youth, in Oregon and Southwest Washington. PMYPB provides a safe age appropriate environment to learn highland music. It is the intention of the PMYPB that at age 18, a PMYPB musician will become a competitive player in the adult Portland Metro Pipe Band.

Our Feature Performer is Jim Barrie.

James Barrie was taught bagpipes by his father, William Barrie, a pupil of renowned Pipe Majors John McDougall Gillies and Robert Reid. He is an authority of the Cameron style of Piobaireachd. In 2013 Jim gave a presentation of how he was taught in the Cameron style by his father, to the Piobaireachd Society in Scotland at their annual conference.

Jim was playing at a professional level by the age of 13, and in addition to being a successful solo competitor, played with several prominent New Zealand pipe bands, including the Pipes and Drums of Innes Tartan. He was Pipe Major of the Auckland Police Pipe Band for 7 years before his return to Canada.

Jim went on to produce and record piping, dance, and folk music. His innovative albums Ancient Piobaireachd Volumes I-IV were a breakthrough in the piping world, combining his father’s canntaireachd singing with background accompaniment. His pipe compositions which appear in his book A Lifetime of Compositions have been universally played: they are regularly heard on the competition field, and have been recorded on other instruments as well as bagpipes.

Jim continues to compose and record at his Ceol Mor Studio, and is an active performer, adjudicator and teacher.

We look forward to a festive night celebrating a fantastic season of piping, drumming and Scottish fun!

Apr 5, 2016

March OPS Results and Photos

Thank you to everyone who competed, performed, volunteered, and joined us for a fun event in March!
See the March competition results here.

Join us in April for a quartet competition! 
It's a 3-5 minute melody, with a minimum of 4 parts for each tune. See more competition details here.

Have you applied for an OPS Scholarship yet? 
Get more scholarship details here. Scholarships will be awarded at OPS on April 16.

More photos are on our Facebook page.

Portland Metro Pipe Band

Craig and Colin
Our volunteers hard at work behind the bar!
Young drummers busy practicing!
Debra and Bonnie

Featured Performer Joseph Stewart

Local Hero Suvi Chisholm

Local Hero Will Beattie