TOWNSEND, Tenn. March 10, 2023—East Tennessee’s premier celebration of Scottish culture returns to the Great Smoky Mountains May 20 and 21, 2023 featuring the beloved clans,
events, and games from years past.
The two–day festival will take place at the Townsend Visitor’s Center located at 7906 E. Lamar Alexander Parkway in Townsend, Tennessee. The location provides festival–goers with scenic views
of the mountains reminiscent of the Scottish highlands and a short commute to the Great Smoky Mountains National Park. The event will feature over 50 clans, over 20 vendors of food and
merchandise, as well as local and national performers.
Festival Vice President Keith Austin is excited for another year of celebration in the Smokies. “While you may not own a kilt, your last name may not begin with MC and you may, or may not like haggis, it’s a great festival for everyone to come and experience this culture. There is something for everyone, especially with the music lineup we have this year,” said Austin. “The atmosphere and landscape of the area make it feel like the perfect place for a festival like this. We think everyone will truly enjoy what the Townsend area has to offer.”
Festival attendees will enjoy entertainment including vibrant cultural and educational presentations. Live music, ranging from Rock and Roll to folk, will take place on three main stages.
With traditional athletic and dance competitions and scotch–tasting seminars, there’s something for everyone to enjoy at this festival. Even the kids can participate in their own league of Highland athletics before heading over to the dog show and parade.
The chance to enjoy competition is endless. Festival goers have the opportunity to watch nearly 70 professional and amateur athletes compete in the hammer throw, caber toss, sheaf toss and other
events. Attendees can get involved themselves with the haggis throw. There will also be a medley of bands including bagpipes and drummers from around the region. More than a half dozen are expected to
participate in both full band and individual competitions. Additionally, there will be clan challenges such as the battle axe throw, best clan tent, clan triathlon relay and other competitions.
“We are always thrilled to have the Smoky Mountain Scottish Festival and Games return to Blount County year after year,” said Blount Partnership Director of Tourism Kim Mitchell. “Everyone, residents and visitors alike, always anticipate this event. It’s an excellent way for everyone to celebrate Scottish culture while finding out all that Blount County has to offer.”
Multiple ticket pass options are available starting at $15. Festival goers can save time and money by buying online. Children 15 and under have free admission for both days of the festival. Parking will be available adjacent to the fairgrounds.
Visit https://smokymountaingames.org for more information on entertainment schedules and parking information.
Please note, the Townsend Visitors Center is under construction and some areas will be unavailable. Expect some detours.