Cowal Highland Gathering to host virtual event for 2020 - Cowal Highland Gathering
26th - 28th August 2021

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Cowal Highland Gathering to host virtual event for 2020

Cowal Highland Gathering is widely reputed to be one of Scotland’s best family friendly events, and with this year’s Gathering cancelled, organisers are getting ready to host a virtual alternative with three days of online entertainment running from 27 – 29 August 2020.

No one could have predicted the events of 2020 with events cancelled as the world went into lockdown due to the COVID-19 pandemic. After the cancellation of the Gathering in April the CHG Board met to discuss possible alternative celebrations. The result is a free, three-day online celebration across what would have been the 126th Cowal Highland Gathering from 27 – 29 August.

The event, which will stream on the Gathering’s Facebook page and YouTube channel, will include all the elements which make CHG unique, including interviews with past and present competitors and CHG personalities, archive film together with more recent broadcast footage and music from some of the biggest names to step onto the Gig at the Gathering and Ceilidh Tent stages. There will also be opportunities for the online audience to take part including a virtual 5K run allowing anyone, wherever they are in the world, to get involved.

CHG Chair Ronnie Cairns is excited about the prospect of moving the historic event onto a virtual stage saying: ‘From the moment we cancelled the Gathering in April we had such an outpouring of sadness from across the world for the loss of this year’s event that we quickly realised we had to do something for our audience. But we also saw an opportunity to showcase the Gathering, Argyll, and indeed Scotland, to a new, online audience. Over the last few months we’ve been talking to competitors past and present, musicians and some very familiar faces and trying to work out a programme which will give our online audience their CHG fix.

‘None of this would be possible without the support of EventScotland who have helped us to fund the Virtual Gathering and make it as good as it possibly can be.’

This year’s virtual edition of the Gathering is supported by EventScotland, part of VisitScotland’s Events Directorate.

Paul Bush OBE, Director of Events at VisitScotland, said: ‘The Cowal Highland Gathering is one of Scotland’s most prestigious Highland games events and EventScotland is delighted to be funding this virtual edition of the Gathering through our International Funding Programme. It’s great to see that audiences from around the world will still be able to enjoy and engage with the Gathering during these unprecedented times, through a diverse online programme of interviews, music performances and archive footage.’

This is the first time the Gathering will not go ahead since the end of WWII and while the grandstand in Dunoon Stadium remains empty in 2020, the Virtual Gathering is coming to you, wherever you live or however you view it, you’ll have a front row seat.