Our Boys’ School community came together on a beautiful autumn day to celebrate Celtic Day. It is one of the most favoured day on the school’s calendar, the only day of the year our entire Boy’s School timetable is replaced with activities arranged around a Scottish theme, with fun and learning in mind.
In his welcome address, Principal of the Boys’ School Peter Cassie summed it up perfectly when he said that Celtic Day is an occasion for us to be proud sons of Saint Kentigern and to reflect on our Scottish roots which is so important to our school culture.
“These Scottish roots should inspire us to become innovators, inventors and boys who will go on to make a difference in the world while maintaining a great sense of humour because that is what a true Scotsman does.
“Celtic Day is about fun. It is about brotherhood. Its is about leadership. Each activity is designed to test and challenge individuals while uniting the clan as a team.”
The day began with our tartan-clad Kapa Haka group laying down the challenge, signalling the moment for our College Pipe Band together with our Boys’ School Pipe Band to begin the parade. Our older boys took their younger buddies under their wing as they joined parade knowing there is a lot of fun ahead of them.
As part of the official ceremony, one steep in tradition, each House leader stepped up to share insights on their respective Houses and deliver their part of Mungo’s story, the four symbols that make up the Glasgow coat of arms adopted by our Houses.
As is tradition, Head Boy Toby Wigglesworth then came forward, joining a long line of Head Boys who have taken on the task of learning and reciting Robbie Burn’s Ode to the Haggis in Gaelic, one he had the privilege of witnessing over the last eight years and been practising every night over the month. All who attended would agree that he delivered the difficult soliloquy with ease and confidence.
Spirits remained high throughout the day as the boys rotated between indoor and outdoor activities. From crafts, Lego castles and padder tennis to giant zorb balls on the pool and inflatable obstacle courses, there was plenty of fun all around. The Castle Siege Water Wars were again a highlight – as they are every year!
Our sincere thank you to our parents who did a fantastic job in providing support on the day, from preparing shortbread for guests in the morning, offering haggis, and supervising games on the fields and in the pool. Celtic Day could not happen without your support.
The House Champion by a mere 2 points was Hamilton, and the House Clan champion went to Cargill’s Rimu.
For the uninitiated, here are some fun facts:
- The day gathered 20 clans, five for each House, reflecting a mix of our Scottish and New Zealand Maori heritage.
- Honouring the story of St Kentigern as a boy, the symbols of his legend – the bird that never flew, the tree that never grew, the fish that never same and the bell that never rang – were adopted by each House. Cargill chose the name of the name of the trees for their five clans, Chalmers chose the name of fish, Hamilton chose the name of birds, whilst Wishart took the name of the bells (instruments).
- A Scottish dish, the Haggis is a savoury pudding containing sheep’s pluck, minced with onion, oatmeal, suet, spices and salt, mixed with stock and cooked while traditionally encased in the animal’s stomach though now an artificial casing is often used instead.