Clan Maxwell Society
of Canada

Stone Mountain Highland Games

October 21-22, 2006

On October 17th, Merv & Jacqueline Rowan left Lindsay at 1:30 A.M. to drive to the Holiday Inn, near Guelph Line in Burlington where we were met by "Wills Coach" bus driver, Ruth. At 6:30 A.M. we began our journey to Georgia and the Stone Mountain Highland Games near Atlanta, with stops for breaks and lunch along the way. We were hosted on the tour by Clan MacKenzie who were to be the 'Featured Clan' at the Games. That night we stayed at the Ramada Inn, Wytheville, Virginia, the mid way point on the trip. The next morning, Wednesday, the 18th of October, after a brisk early morning walk, we boarded the coach and headed for Atlanta. At about 5:00 P.M. we checked into our room at the Hilton Motel on Peachtree Street, Atlanta and following a late dinner, retired for the night.

Next morning, Thursday, 19th October, after Jackie had a swim in the pool and Merv. had his walk, we were treated to a tour of the City of Atlanta, listened to our guide give a great talk on the history of Atlanta, viewed antebellum homes, and businesses, and had a wonderful tour of the Governor's Mansion. By the way, the gardener of the Governor's Mansion gave Jackie a rose from the garden. We had lunch at Cheesecake Restaurant, after which we continued our tour.

After breakfast, a swim, and a walk, on Friday, 20th October, we were on the bus and down to "Stone Mountain," and what a sight it was! A huge, boulder-like mountain rises out of the ground some 2300 plus feet, which may be seen for miles around. We were given a tour of the entire Park area, had an cable car ride to the top of the mountain, and a five mile ride on a quaint train around the entire mountain. We managed to get a little shopping in as well. Then we travelled back to our hotel for a Sponsors' Reception. The ladies looked great in their formal dresses and the men in their dress kilts. Everything was just what would be expected at such an event! It was here that we first met Larry and Catherine Long, the longstanding President and Secretary, of Clan Maxwell U.S.A. We also had the pleasure of meeting John Maxwell from Alabama at the Reception.

October 21st, Saturday, was the first day of the Stone Mountain Highland Games, and after our usual swim and walk, we boarded the bus for the Games. As mentioned, Clan MacKenzie were the honoured clan for the event and with them was the 2006 Honoured Guest, the wife of John Ruaridh Grant MacKenzie, 5th Earl of Cromartie, the recognized Chief of Clan MacKenzie's wife, Lady Cromartie and their two sons. We continued around to the Maxwell tent where we met several Members of Clan Maxwell U.S.A. We visited around the Clan tent area. We had a great visit with Members of Clan Pollock at their tent. We noticed a carved plaque on their table, the mate of which we have for our display. It was carved by our great friend 'Bud' Pollock, formerly of Peterborough, Ontario, who joined 'The Flowers of the Forest' a few years ago. 'Bud' was a great encouragement and mentor to us in the formative years of Clan Maxwell Society of Canada.

At 2:00 P.M. sharp, Clan Maxwell U.S.A. held their Annual General Meeting in a tent located in a quiet area. Several items of interest were discussed. Larry Long stepped down as President after 20 or more years and Catherine, his wife, stepped down as Secretary. A new slate of officers was formed, and we wish them every success. Larry and Catherine were presented with a plaque in appreciation of their long and eventful service. Following the AGM, Clan Tent items were packed up for the night. Larry and Catherine Long drove us over to an informal dinner with the Maxwells at "5 Forks Restaurant," where we spent a pleasant time, after which Larry and Catherine graciously drove us back to our Hotel in Atlanta.

Sunday, October 22nd, we looked out to see light rain! The games and a Kirkin' were to be continued over Sunday. However, it was decided that we should get on our way to Canada. We left our Hotel at 8:00 A.M. and travelled north to Wytheville, Virginia for the night, stopping for breaks and lunch along the way. The next day, Monday, we were back to pick up our car where we had parked it in Burlington and drove to Oshawa to visit some of our children.

We have to thank the MacKenzies for their kind hospitality. There was never a dull moment. There were videos of Scottish Festivals and music, movies as we rode along in the bus. And a special thanks to Mary Lou Oyler and Norman MacKenzie for organizing and arranging things and to our bus driver, Ruth.

Submitted by Jacqueline (Maxwell) Rowan

Background graphic from a painting courtesty of Andrew Spratt, Custodian,Dirleton Castle,East Lothian, Scotland. -