Had a great time at Cèilidh Oidhche Shamhna – Hold the date for the next cèilidh on 17 December

Yesterday Gaelic learners gathered at O’Flynn’s in Baltimore City for our autumn cèilidh.  Given the time of year, the theme was Oidhche Shamhna – Halloween, the end of summer, the eve of November, the eve of winter.

Sgoil Ghàidhlig Bhaile an Taigh Mhóir teacher, Scott Morrison, led a fascinating discussion around the Gaelic Fairy tradition.  Do you know your Fairy lore?

Two participants recited the first two verses of the poem Air Oidhche na Samhna bidh ann, after which Scott recited many more verses with everyone chanting the chorus. Originally a wauking song, probably from the late 19th century, The poem is filled with Scottish Oidhche Shamhna traditions.

If you want to take a crack at it, here is the poem: Air Oidhche na Samhna bidh ann.docx

Or, for something simpler, this fun book, Oidhche Shamhna, that one of our classes is reading.  It was written and illustrated by young school children in the Hebrides in the 1980s: Oidhche Shamhna

Everyone shared stories of their ancestors, funny and serious, and we learned a lot of new things about each others while honoring those who walked those long roads of our heritage.

We were in a bar, so why not play cards?  For instance, this group below in a game of Scottish Gaelic (Gàidhlig) Uno.

Uno - 1

And then the sharing of songs and poetry.  Below you can hear one of the participants, Duncan, singing Cànan nan Gàidheal, written by Murchadh MacPharlain. It’s only a portion of the song, the quality isn’t great, and music from another part of the pub was coming through, but you can still hear what a beautiful voice this young man has.

We need to thank Liam Flynn for creating such an ideal Irish pub as O’Flynn’s, his hospitality in making the pub a home to many Celtic groups, and his commitment to Gaelic.


Mark the 17th of December on your calendars
and join us for our next cèilidh, again, at O’Flynn’s.

Tha sinn a’ dèanamh fiughar gus am faic mi sibh uile!
(We are looking forward to seeing all of you!)


Completely new to learning Gaelic? Our new beginner class is for you

cum gaidhligbeo

Sgoil Ghàidhlig Bhaile an Taigh Mhóir is excited to announce a new online class in Scottish Gaelic for complete beginners.  As the existing class of beginner learners has moved on to a more advanced beginner status we found the need to re-establish a class starting from step one that would address the needs of the newest learners joining our community as well as some just returning to study.  The new class will also be taught by our teacher, Scott Morrison.

As with our other online classes, we are currently using Skype.  Participation requires that students have a Skype alias and a microphone on their computer.  Your Skype alias will have to be provided before your first class.

Also,as with our other classes, the text we are using in the new class is Teach Yourself: Complete Gaelic, by Boyd Robertson and Iain Taylor, supplemented with lessons from Taic.

The fee for the class is also the same: $10 per class, with tuition payments made in increments of $30 (3 classes).

Classes are every two weeks on Friday afternoons, 2:30 pm – 3:30 pm.

For complete information on classes go to the Class Schedule page.

To register, or for more information contact: Richard Gwynallen at richard.gwynallen@gmail.com

Join us for our autumn céilidh – 29 October

Cèilidh Oidhche Shamhna

Sunday, 29 October
DiDòmhnaich, 29mh An Dàmhair
3:00 pm – 6:00 pm
Tri uairean feasgar – Sia uairean feasgar
3432 S. Hanover Street, Baltimore, Maryland


Autumn on the Chesapeake Bay - 2

Autumn on the Chesapeake Bay

Tha am foghar ann a bheireas an samhradh gu crìch agus a dh’fhosglas an geamhradh. (The autumn is here which brings the summer to an end and opens the winter.)

A new year in the Celtic calendar is upon us, and we are gathering with song, story, food, and drink to welcome Oidhche Shamhna (Halloween/Eve of November) in the warm, convivial environment of Baltimore’s Best Irish bar.

Thigibh ann cuide ruinn! (Join us!)

Celtic knotwork - 2

Aig a’ chèilidh (At the céilidh)

  • Gaelic Immersion session – Build your Gaelic through conversation
  • The Gaelic Fairy Tradition – A presentation and discussion by Scott MacIlleMhoire (Morrison) on the lore, origins, and lessons of the Fairy tradition among the Gaels.  What could be better as we approach Oidhche Shamhna and the veil between the worlds is thinnest?
  • Sharing of songs, stories, music, and poetry  – Learn some songs as we sing together and bring your own tunes, poems, stories or songs to share (in Gaelic or otherwise).  Some will reflect the time of year and the Gaelic traditions of the season.

Our céilidhean are rooted in the traditional Highland céilidh as an intimate, informal gathering where stories, poems, songs, news, and more are shared; good food and drink are partaken of (a guarantee with the O’Flynn’s kitchen); and the craic is always good.

If you are interested in Gaelic culture and language, we would love for you to come.  You do not have to be a participant in any of our study groups (though you are very welcome to join).  We will be practicing our Gaelic, but everyone will feel comfortable, whether you have any Gaelic or not.

Please RSVP to richard.gwynallen@gmail.com

Chì sinn uile aig a’ chèilidh sibh! (We’ll see you all at the cèilidh)

Oidhche Shamhna Shona Dhuibh
Happy Halloween to you all
Celtic Pumpkin - 1