This past year we were honoured to have as our 2017 BC Highland Games Chieftain of the Day.....
Andrew Bonar (1966-2017)
Andrew Bonar, who died on October 13, 2017 after a long struggle with cancer, was one of the most recognizable bagpipers in the Pacific Northwest. He started piping with the Abbotsford Legion Pipe band and quickly became a top amateur competitor. In 1981 he joined the Simon Fraser University Pipe Band, winning the North American Championships in 1982. That was just the beginning. With SFU, he won five world pipe band championships at the highest level and helped to establish SFU as a dominant global pipe band. He won every top solo BC Pipers’ Assn. professional award multiple times, including the MacCrimmon Cup. In Scotland, he won the Silver Medal for Pìobaireachd at the Northern Meeting in Inverness in 2010. Locally, he served as a BC Pipers' Assn. board member and was a long time member of the BCPA Grading & Adjudication Committees. He was made a life member of the board in 2015. He was also a piping instructor, a highland dancing piper and served on the board and as president of the BC Highland Dancing Assn. Andrew was a prolific composer of music and sponsored the Boney Music Invitational Piping Competition that raises funds for brain cancer research. He is survived by his wife Jeanette, a top highland dancer who is also a teacher and judge. Their daughter Kate is a highland dancer and their son Cameron a budding piper.
History of "Chieftain of the Day"
Historically, a "games day" was held within each Scottish highland clan to establish the strongest and ablest men in strength, music and dance. The Chieftain, as head of the clan, held a position of honour at the gathering.
In keeping with this tradition, highland games today invite a leader in the community to act as our "Chieftain" of the day. In recognition of this honour, during the massed pipe band performance, the assembled pipers and drummers play the tune Highland Laddie in recognition of the 2017 Chieftain of the Day. (The video link is the highland games in Pleasanton, California.)
The Chieftain of the Day for 2017 is Andrew Bonar.