Pipe band seeking to represent Nevada in Scotland competition

Battle Born Pipes & Drums, the statewide bag pipe band, was formed to mark the 50th anniversary of bag piping in the Silver State as well as to compete at events throughout the western United States and in August at Glasgow, Scotland.

In order to meet their goal of representing Nevada at the Worlds International Pipe Band Championships in Scotland, Battle Born Pipes & Drums is accepting donations to offset travel costs.

The band is comprised of members from Carson City and Reno, as far north as Elko and south to Las Vegas.

"The idea of going statewide in order to draw from a pool of limited resources was in part the reason for creating Battle Born from smaller (groups), and we also have a rich history of piping and drumming - 50 years now," said John LoGiurato, drummer and "unofficial manager."

The group of 18 plus two alternates, need an estimated $40,000 to cover travel and lodging costs. Donations are tax deductible and every bit will help, LoGiurato said.

The World Piping Championships take place on Glasgow Green and feature 8,000 musicians (nearly 250 bands) from 16 countries.

For those who want to attend and see the Nevada contingent compete, a nine-day tour, "Pipe Dreams," is being offered through Travel Unlimited in Reno. A portion of the cost directly supports Battle Born and the tour is offered and escorted by Lois and Bob Wallace, council members of Clan Wallace Society-Worldwide and members of the Nevada Society of Scottish Clans, a nonprofit organization dedicated to preserving the

history and promoting the art of piping and drumming in Nevada.

The tour includes visits to Loch Lomond, the Royal Concert Hall in Glasgow, the piping festival, Mount Stuart, Edinburgh and castle, including the military tattoo, and more. The tour is also in part a fundraiser for the pipe and drum band and is offered at $1,699 for adults and $920 for ages 12 through 16.

"This is, for many, a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity, suitable for families to enjoy," Lois said. "Getting registered now is important so we can reserve space, since the events sell out.

"We hope that by getting the word out, there also will be a growing awareness of bagpiping and drumming in our state, and it will become more widely supported."

Northern Nevada's Sierra Highlanders who spearheaded the formation of Battle Born, have participated in past events, and are seen at parades and events.

"This is a unique opportunity for us and for the community," LoGiurato said. "Participating in competitions makes us more galvanized than ever to preserve the craft and more willing to stay with it as this is a very difficult form of music, requiring precision and it's also quite an elaborate form of marching.

"Getting the public involved in the trip to Scotland, gets them invested and makes it accessible ... it is the sense of pageantry that people enjoy ... this trip gives an opportunity to those who haven't been to Scotland to fully experience it and (for members) to play at a higher level than before."

Battle Born members travel throughout the state, combining rehearsals with event performances.

"Being spread all over has been challenging, but we're making it work," LoGiurato said. "The music is powerful, emotional, all about honor and duty and there's nothing more concentrated about these qualities than in a pipe band and our folks have certainly committed to this."


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