Newport Celtic Festival & Highland Games - Oregon Coast Visitors Association

Newport Celtic Festival & Highland Games

Posted by The Oregon Coast / June 4, 2015

(Newport, Oregon) – Three days of immersing yourself in Celtic culture, athletic events, music, food and culture will happen June 12 – 14 in Newport with the Fifth Annual Newport Celtic Festival & Highland Games.

This year’s  Newport Celtic Festival & Highland Games features a massive array of events, both cool and quirky. Some events take place in Newport’s historical Nye Beach district while most happen at the Lincoln County Fairgrounds. On Friday, look for beachy fun like a sand sculpture contest, along with immersive events like a kilted fun run, Gathering of the Clans, and bagpipers on the beach at sunset.

Then on Saturday and Sunday at the Fairgrounds, enjoy sheep herding demos, Highland cattle, the Celtic Heritage Parade, historical displays and information from various clans, bundles of Celtic items and food, and even a Haggis eating contest.

For this very special fifth anniversary celebration a Concert by the Sea has been added on June 12, starting at 7 p.m. (gates open at 6:30) and throughout the weekend there will be live music and dancing on three stages.

Kicking off Friday’s concert is The Fire Inside, an acoustic ensemble that has a more traditional approach but is high in energy. Cleghorn is a more fiery and raucous form of Celtic rock with smoldering musicianship. Brother is known as a “tribal Celtic rock” band with a mix of cultures, but steeped heavily in pounding rhythms beneath driving guitars, synth, woodwinds and bagpipes. This concert is free with paid 2-day admission to the festival or just $10 for those who want to check it out.

A quick overview of other events:

Gathering of the Clans – Piping Down the Sun: On Friday, pipers hit the beach at sunset in a moving ceremony bringing the Clans together for the weekend festivities.

Celtic Heritage Parade:  includes a colorful parade of pipers and pipe bands, Clans, families, dazzling performers, lovely redheaded “Gingers,” and of course, Celtic dogs of all kinds followed by a presentation of the Colors and the National Anthem.

Yaquina Fiber Arts Guild: Members of the local fiber arts guild demonstrate how natural fibers from sheep’s wool are spun and woven in the traditional way.

Bonnie Knees Contest: Gentlemen show off their palatable patellas for the audience who votes for the winner. Kilts must be worn.

The Scottish Highland Games challenge athletes from all over the Pacific Northwest with a gauntlet of events including the caber toss, sheaf toss, stone put, hammer, weight for height (over head) and weight for distance.  Each athlete must attempt each challenge. There is also a lighter version of these events for kids, along with crafts and activities for kids 12 and under at “Sprog’s Corner.”



FRIDAY – 7 p.m. – 10 p.m. (gates open at 6:30 p.m.)

Concert by the Sea

SATURDAY –  9 a.m. – 7 p.m.

SUNDAY – 9 a.m. – 5 p.m.



One-day tickets: adult $12; students, military, seniors (62+) $9. Family pack of four, $35.

Two-day tickets: adult $18; students, military, seniors (62+) $13. Family pack of four, $60.

Friday’s Concert by the Sea: free with any 2-day ticket purchase or $10 general admission.


A full schedule and ticket purchases are at

For Newport lodging and activity information and complete calendar of events see and 800-262-7844.

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