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Kirkin’ the Tartan

April 14 @ 10:30 am 11:30 am

Have you heard that we’re all Irish on St. Patrick’s Day, and we all become German for Oktoberfest? Now we can all be Scottish for “Kirking the Tartan” (or “Kirkin’ the Tartan”), a tradition that involves blessing tartan fabrics and garments during a church service. At the April 14 church service, Westwood First Presbyterian Church will be celebrating Celtic tradition with bagpipes, drums, banners, and kilts. Join us first for the service and then as we walk to West Side Brewing for “more” pipes & drums, drinks, food, and fellowship!

Tartans have evolved for special purposes such as military, hunting dress, including wedding attire. But what’s the story behind the kilt? Centuries ago, Henry VIII split from the pope and declared the United Kingdom to be Protestant. When Mary ascended to the throne, however, she flipped it back to Catholicism and set about eliminating the protestors, thus earning her the nickname of “Bloody Mary.”

The English parliament and monarchy passed the Disarming Act (1746–1782) in Scotland, which forbade the use of weapons and the Highlanders’ wearing of the tartans or kilts. During this time, many Scots continued to wear tartan in secret, and the tradition of Kirking the Tartan became a way to publicly celebrate Scottish culture and heritage. Although the celebration is based on events in Scotland, it has really caught on among Scottish Americans in the United States, particularly Presbyterians and usually in April. So that’s what we’re going to do! Get out your kilts, shake off the mothballs, and join us for worship at Westwood First on April 14 at 10:30. After the service, we will all parade down Harrison Avenue to West Side Brewery (donating 20% of their beer sales to Westwood First for our “community engagement” endeavors). for food, fun, friendship, and fellowship! Invite your friends! Bring your family, and follow the sound of the drums and bagpipes! To learn more about the tartan, go to https://clan.com/.

3326 Koenig Avenue
Cincinnati, Ohio 45211 United States