Cod Gone Wild’s Roy Kawano

Celtic community comes together for ceilidh

Event, hosted by the Sons of Scotland Kildonnan Camp, features performances by Cod Gone Wild and award winning Argyll Highland Dancers.

It’ll be a Scottish/Celtic celebration like no other when a favourite local Celtic band returns with a new look, and some of the area’s fleet-footed highland and Scottish country dancers do their “fling.”

On the bill at the St. Andrew’s Family Ceilidh, hosted by the Sons of Scotland Kildonnan Camp Saturday, Nov. 26 at the Schubert Centre, is Vernon’s own Celtic-Maritime band Cod Gone Wild.

Started by Andrew Mercer, who teaches guitar and vocals at Vernon’s Argyll School of Celtic Arts, Cod Gone Wild was recently on tour in Mercer’s homeland of Newfoundland, and returned to Vernon with a fresh perspective and a new lineup of musicians, including fiddle player Anjuli Otter and bassist Roy Kawano.

Otter, who was raised in Vernon, is a classically trained violinist who until recently lived in India, where she was a member of the Symphony Orchestra India.

“Anjuli has recently returned home to Vernon and is looking forward to hitting the road with The Cods to show Canada and the world her own brand of modern Celtic music,” said Mercer on Cod Gone Wild’s website. “She has extraordinary talent and extensive musical experience on the violin performing with symphony orchestras locally and across the globe.”

Lake Country’s Kawano has joined the group more or less on a trial basis having never done Celtic music before, although he’s spent plenty of time playing throughout the valley.

Chad “Rhino” Carter, who also teaches at the Argyll school, continues to play percussion and drums in the band.

Together, the group is planning to release its second CD, Cod Gone Wild Volume 2, in the near future.

In the meantime, Cod Gone Wild will join highland dancers from the Argyll School of Celtic Arts, who will be demonstrating some of their winning moves.

Some of the school’s competitive dancers recently won aggregate trophies and medals at the Trail Invitational Highland Dancing Competition.

Abbie Hackman received high scores to move out of  the novice category, requiring six wins in six competitions, into intermediate.

Vernon’s Torin Andrews also managed six wins in six different competitions in the fling, sword, or Seann Triubhas (celebration dance) in the beginner category to move to novice. He also won the overall trophy for the highest scores in all age groups in the beginner category.

Kailee Moreira danced her second competition in intermediate and won the trophy for the under 12 age group. (Moreira recently won the aggregates at both the Calgary and Canmore Highland Games.)

Besides the ceilidh, some of the dancers will also be competing at the Fraser Valley Competition on Saturday, and the following week at the Santa’s Fling in Vancouver.

Saturday’s St. Andrew’s Family Ceilidh at the Schubert Centre starts at 7 p.m. and will also feature bagpipers, country dancers, prizes, draws, food and refreshments. Proceeds from the event go towards piping, drumming, and dancing scholarships for Vernon area youth.

Tickets are $25 for adults, $10 for children 6 to 12, at The Bean Scene, Shear Dimensions Hair Design & Esthetics, The Argyll School of Celtic Arts in the Alpine Centre, or by calling 250-503-3886 or emailing


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