Annual supper scheduled to honor poet

The Scottish Heritage Society of North-Central West Virginia announces its annual Burns Supper will be held from 5:30-9:30 p.m., Jan. 26, at the Stonewall Resort in Lewis County.

For 20 years, the event has been held in the Clarksburg/Bridgeport area, but the society is excited to offer it at this new location, hoping it will make it easier for Scots in the central, south-central and mountain counties to attend.

For the past 212 years, people of Scots and Scotch-Irish heritage have gathered together to celebrate the life and works of “Scotland’s poet,” Robert Burns, who often is described as the most human and noblest of the romantic poets. His work touches us even today. He wrote the words to “Auld Lang Syne,” composed the scary “Tam O’Shanter” that has become standard reading in middle school literature courses and created the poem “Red, Red Rose” so that men for the last two centuries could woo their ladies on Valentine’s Day.

Beginning in 1801, people all over the world started gathering together around the anniversary of Burns’ birthday to listen to Scottish music, feast and make toasts in his memory. From Scotland to Australia to Canada and the United States, it’s quite a party to honor the man and his unique contribution to literature.

Jeff Gibson will serve as the chairman of the dinner, and Curt Mitchell will give the address to the haggis in true Scottish dialect. Piper Carl Henson will lead the procession and pipe in the chef, Joe Corcoglioniti, as he presents the Haggis to those assembled.

This year’s Burns supper is open to the public and offers a hearty Scots menu, including haggis, “Cock-a-Leekie Soup,” salad, sliced roast beef with gravy, stuffed pork chops, grilled chicken breast with lemon and capers, whipped potatoes, seasonal vegetables, chocolate fudge cake and cherry pie. Seating is by reservation only and those reservations can be made by contacting Bill or Eleanor MacLean at 304-842-0370 or Tickets are $35 for adults and $25 for children.

The Scottish Society is glad to once again welcome the musicians of Aurora Celtic. This group from the hills of West Virginia specializes in the traditional music of Scotland and Ireland, and it will perform songs common during Burns’ life and which were brought over to the new world by the first settlers.