In what is now established tradition among the Scottish and Sassenach (non- Celtic) community in Costa Rica, the colorful and ceremony-rich Burns Supper is a firm fixture on everyone’s must-attend calendar.
The elegant Candiles salon at the Costa Rica Country Club in the western San José suburb of Escazú will be the venue for up to 300 guests Feb. 15, starting at 7 p.m., to honor the venerated and, at times, infamous 18th-century Scots bard Robert Burns, with plenty of quirky tributes, local and imported haggis, Scottish dancing and more than a wee dram of the best whiskey.
To some, “Rabbie” Burns’ works may not be familiar, but almost everyone has heard or sung his celebrated “Auld Lang Syne” at the end of a festive gathering, or proffered a “red, red rose” to their loved ones.
He also produced a prolific amount of vernacular poems and songs that made a huge impact on the Scottish literary scene of his day, and ultimately came to be admired the world over.
Burns was a man of passion: his beloved Scottish countryside,women aplenty, whiskey aplenty, and a general lack of restraint. No surprise he died at 37.
What is remarkable is the devotion of his latter-day fans, who yearly celebrate his name, his poetry and his life all over the world.
Fan or no, supper guests can find some plaid (or “tartan,” in northern parlance), don their kilts or semi-formal dress and get set to enjoy some authentic Scottish celebrating.
The cost per person of ¢20,000 ($40) includes the haggis, tributes and poems, full buffet, wine and whiskey, live music with renowned Tico Celtic-music band Peregrino Gris, and dancing aplenty.
If the idea of stepping out to highland reels, flings and “strip the willow” sounds daunting, fear not. A dance practice will be held Feb. 2 at 7:30 p.m. with David and Karin Garrett at the British School of Costa Rica, at the end of the Boulevard in the western San José neighborhood of Rohrmoser.
Bring your own beverage and boca – and dancing shoes, of course.