Grandfather Mountain GS&LW 2016 – Our First Instructor.

Our first instructor for the Grandfather Mountain Gaelic Song and Language Week 2016 (July 3 – 8) will be Catrìona Parsons!

Catrìona Parsons
Catrìona Parsons

A native Gaelic speaker born in the Isle of Lewis, and a graduate of Edinburgh University, Scotland, Catrìona has been involved in the teaching of Gaelic language and song in North America for many years. Married to a Lutheran pastor from Virginia, Catrìona began her Gaelic teaching in a small way in the US. While teaching English and Linguistics at Dartmouth College, Hanover, New Hampshire, she was approached by Tom McKean, who was then a student at the college, to teach him Gaelic; Tom is now on the faculty of Edinburgh U. She also formed a Gaelic choir which went on to win first place at the then Ontario Mod.

She also taught for 30 summers in the summer school of the Gaelic College, St. Ann’s, Cape Breton, where she was commissioned to prepare a course-book in three volumes with accompanying 90-minute tapes (nowadays CDs!), titled “Gàidhlig troimh Chòmhradh”, which has been used by students all over the world. In addition, she taught for many years in the Celtic Department of St. Francis Xavier University; after retiring, she was recruited to join the new Nova Scotia Office of Gaelic Affairs, where she remained for 6 years. At that time, apart from translation tasks, she wrote many Gaelic-English articles on behalf of the office and the Gaelic community, for local newspapers throughout the province, and was the editor-in-chief of the Gaelic periodical “Misneach” for which she wrote 95% of the articles. She was also liaison with local schools regarding the teaching of Gaelic; she continues on that committee. More recently, she completed the teaching of an advanced Gaelic Class for Cape Breton University which influenced her to prepare a draft booklet explaining Gaelic Structure. She hopes to tweak this for general distribution.

In addition, among editing tasks for Gaelic publications, Catrìona has conducted workshops and adjudicated Gaelic competitions throughout North America, also in Australia and New Zealand; she has produced a CD of Gaelic songs titled “Eileanan mo Ghaoil” in tribute both to Cape Breton and Lewis; and she has had several poems published in Gaelic magazines Gairm and Gath”.

Catrìona also helped start the US National Mòd and has been a popular teacher at Gaelic Song and Language Weeks in years past.

We are very happy to have Catrìona back for the 2016 Grandfather Mountain Gaelic Song and Language Week!

Get ready for Grandfather Mountain Gaelic Song and Language Week 2016!


When? July 3rd through July 8th, 2016

Where? Lees-McRae College in Banner Elk, NC.

What? From Sunday to Friday the sounds of Gaelic, the first language of the Scots, will resound in the mountains of North Carolina. Songs, stories, jokes, and fun galore!

Who? You! Absolute beginners to fluent speakers are welcome. Our experienced teachers come from Scotland and from New Scotland (Alba Nuadh, also known as Nova Scotia, Canada).

Why? Sing with us and learn some of the most beautiful songs in the world. Learn Gaelic with us, improve your language skills, or have conversations with other fluent speakers. We offer a great learning experience for all language levels. Enjoy the company of fellow Gaels and join our cèilidhs. Share a song, a poem, a joke, a story – or just listen and enjoy! Someone will help you if you don’t understand something. Come and join our very welcoming community!

Our 2016 teachers will be announced very soon!

Registration for this amazing week will open this Winter.

GFM Gaelic Song & Language Week Open


Registration is now open for the 2015 Grandfather Mountain Gaelic Song and Language Week!

You may now register either online ( or by mail (

We have a wonderful lineup of instructors – coming to us from Scotland and Cape Breton, Nova Scotia, from the world of “Outlander” and the present-day Gaelic-speaking communities of America and Alba (the Gaelic name for Scotland)!

Continue Reading “GFM Gaelic Song & Language Week Open”

Grandfather Mountain Gaelic Song and Language Week Announces Third Teacher for 2015


We heartily welcome Kathleen Reddy to the Grandfather Mountain Gaelic Song and Language Week 2015. A Nova Scotia native, Kathleen studied and taught multiple levels of Gaelic on both sides of the Atlantic. She’s taught secondary school, college, and immersion courses to learners and native speakers. Kathleen received her BA in English with a Celtic Studies subsidiary (St. Francis Xavier University), holds a Postgraduate Certificate in Secondary Education (University of Strathclyde, Glasgow), and a Diploma of Higher Education in Gaelic and Related Studies (Sabhal Mòr Ostaig, Skye). She’s worked for the Nova Scotia Office of Gaelic Affairs and currently teaches at St. Francis Xavier University: More information can be found on She’ll be joining Joy Dunlop and Gillebrìde MacMillan, completing our roster of teachers for 2015.

Kathleen Reddy

For more information about Grandfather Mountain Gaelic Song and Language Week, click here.

Mark Your Calendars for GS&LW 2015

GFM GS&LW LogoMark Your Calendars!
July 5th – 10th 2015

Join us for the 17th Annual Grandfather Mountain Gaelic Song and Language Week
Lees-McRae College, Banner Elk NC.
presented by An Comunn Gàidhealach Ameireaganach / The American Scottish Gaelic Society

We are pleased to have Gillebrìde MacMillan from South Uist return to the Gaelic Song and Language Week in 2015. After completing a degree in Celtic Studies at the University of Glasgow and a Masters Degree from the University of the Highlands and Islands, Gillebrìde now works in the Celtic and Gaelic Department at University of Glasgow. He is a Gaelic translator, a published writer, and has worked on the Tobar an Dualchais archiving project. He regularly sings and teaches Gaelic song at festivals and cèilidhs in Scotland, Europe and the USA. You may have seen Gillebrìde in episode 3 of the Outlander television series as “Gwyllyn the Bard”. Find out more on YouTube, on his website: and on Twitter:

Also joining us is Joy Dunlop. Gaelic Singer of the Year in 2010 & 2011, she has won both the coveted Royal National Mòd Gold Medal and the Oban Times Gold Medal. An Argyll native, fluent Gaelic speaker and teacher, Joy presents programs on BBC ALBA and makes frequent appearances on Radio nan Gàidheal. She is also an award winning Scottish step-dancer and Traditional Inter-Celtic Dance Champion. Find out more about Joy via YouTube, on Twitter: and from her website: We are delighted to welcome Joy to Grandfather Mountain for the first time.

More information about the 2015 Gaelic Song & Language Week coming soon!
Grandfather Mountain Song and Language Week
An Comunn Gàidhealach Ameireaganach
An Comunn Gàidhealach Ameireaganach / American Scottish Gaelic Society