Band News

June 25, 2015
Climbing, climbing, climbing...


June 12, 2015
First band contest of the season is in the books


June 1, 2015
Back on the Boards!


April 3, 2015
Comics for Kilts 5 another success!




Band News

June 26, 2015 - Climbing, climbing, climbing…

On Saturday June 13, the band traveled to Rhode Island to attend the Rhode Island Highland Games at the Washington County fairgrounds. The event has steadily grown into one of the biggest in the northeast, featuring 27 bands in all grades. Add Jim Ryan and Chuck Bergen to the pipe corps and come out with a 2nd place overall finish out of 11 bands! The pipe section earned a second place from each of the piping judges, the drum section earned a 3rd place and the ensemble score was, wait for it… 1st place! 

Also at the RI Games, bagpiper, Tom Ryan won the Grade II Piobaireachd while earning a rating of Above Grade Level.

June 12, 2015 - First band contest of the season is in the books

And what a good one it is for Claddagh Mhor! The first competition of the season is always met with nerves after a long winter of practicing. On top of that, the venue, Nashua High School, presented the additional challenge of having to play concert-style, with everyone facing the audience versus in the traditional circle. On Saturday April 11, the band met both challenges and finished the day in 3rd place out of 9 bands! The pipe section took a 1st and a 3rd from the piping judges, ensemble was 5th and drumming placed 6th. We finished in a tie for second place, but ‘ensemble preference’ put us in 3rd. Great start to the season!

 Also at the NH Indoor Scottish Festival, bagpiper Tom Ryan won the Grade II Piobaireachd solo event.

June 1, 2015 - Back on the Boards!

On Saturday, February 7, bagpiper Ginger Libby found her way back to the solo competition boards.  And what a comeback! Ginger won second place in a field of 8 competitors in the Grade IV Senior 6/8 March.  Great job, Ginger! 

April 3, 2015 - Comics For Kits another Success!

The band held the 5th annual Comics for Kilts event on Saturday March 21. Comedian Will Green and Maine’s premier improve troupe, Running With Scissors, entertained the crowd for what many called the best show yet. Hope to see you next year!

November 16, 2014 - Annual General Meeting

After a potluck lunch, the band held our AGM to take care of band business and elect officers. Congratulations to Treasurer, Janice Scott, Secretary, Jodi Ryan, Vice President Paul Halvorsen and President, Tom Ryan who all ran especially effective campaigns.

October 5, 2014 - Maine Marathon

Evidently 7am isn’t too early for a pipe band to start playing, at least not for the 3,000 or so runners in the Maine Marathon. At the last minute the band was asked to provide that last bit of adrenaline for the runners at the starting line for the marathon. We were all too happy to oblige. Breakfast at The Porthole Restaurant followed.

September 20, 2014 - Middle of the pack at Loon

Facing a challenging climate, the band finished 10th out of 17 bands at the NH Highland Games at Loon Mountain. On a day that was predicted to be 6o and sunny, the 50s and periodic rain was quite a curveball. Chalk this one up to experience.

August 22, 2014 - Gaelic Storm rolls into Portland

The band had the privilege of opening for Gaelic Storm, who had a tour date in Portland. We also joined them onstage to play the Mingulay Boat Song, arranged by Pete Purvis. Gaelic Storm became famous with their appearance in the movie, Titanic. It was a great night performing in front of an extremely appreciative audience.

July 10, 2014 - Glasgowlands success!

The band finally broke onto the prize list with a 3rd place finish in a field of 6, scoring 2 seconds in piping!

December 12, 2013

The band performed at a Beatles tribute concert at the State Theater in Portland on Saturday November 30. Spencer Albee headlined, with Dominic Lavoie (Dominic and The Lucid, Sha Sha Sha), Chuck Gagne (Dominic and the Lucid, Pete Kilpatrick Band), Sean Morin (The Cambiata, Mai Mai, Sara Hallie Richardson), Jon Roods (Paranoid Social Club, Rustic Overtones), Sara Hallie Richardson and Dan Capaldi (Sea Level) and a host of others played a greatest hits of Beatles songs ranging from the early days up through choice gems from the Beatles solo careers.

Watch Claddagh Mhor's perfomance on YouTube, here:

September 24, 2013

The band finished the season with a 9th place finish at the NH Highland Games at Loon Mountain on September 21, with the drum corps finishing 6th. Mike Shutts stepped up to play the bass drum in his first contest ever. A great job was done by everyone!

June 23, 2013

Congratulations to Tenor Drummer, Mike Shutts for representing the band in his first ever performance in Massed Bands at the RI Highland Games.

June 2013

Congratulations to snare drummer Roger Beverage for his performance at the RI Highland Games. After several years out of the competition ring, Roger place first in both his 2/4 march, playing a score for Carradale Bay and his 6/8 march playing a score for John D. Burgess.

April 2013

Congratulations to bagpiper Zac Hollen for his performances at the NH Indoor Scottish Festival.  Zac placed 5th in this 2/4 March and 1st in his 6/8 march and received an Above Grade Level rating.  Great job, Zac!

February 2013

Comics For Kilts another rousing success!  Thanks to the comics, Kate Ghiloni, Luke Hanbury and headliner, Karen Morgan for a great night!

March 6, 2012

The 2nd annual Comics For Kilts was a rousing success! More than 150 supporters were treated to the music of Con Fullam and Maura Clark during the cocktail hour. Then for the next 90 minutes, Dennis Hunt, Eric Gunderson, John Ater and Tuck brought their best ‘funny’ as Comics for Kilts was a great success for the 2nd year in a row. Proceeds will go towards  the purchase of uniforms and equipment as the band continues to grow!

March 6, 2012

On January 21, the Maine St. Andrew’s Society hosted their 33rd annual Robbie Burns Dinner. As a society scholarship winner, bagpiper Zac Hollen had the opportunity to participate in a recital consisting of several tunes, including a jig he composed. Congratulations Zac!

December 7, 2011

This year marked another successful contest season for our solo competitors. The performances of both John Daggett and Tom Ryan were both recognized by the EUSPBA by granting each piper an upgrade to grade one and grade two, respectively. Other Claddagh Mhor soloists included John Henkel, entering the contest circuit at Drum Major; his son, Cameron Henkel, entering this year as a Grade 4 Jr. Snare Drummer; and Sherm Perry competing in Grade 4 Sr. Snare Drumming.

  • John Daggett, Grade II Piping -- 155 points in 22 competitions
    • EUSPBA - 9th Place Overall (119 competitors)
    • Northeast Branch - 7th Place Overall
    • Seven First Place Finishes
      • Rhode Island Scottish Games - 2/4 March
      • Rhode Island Scottish Games - 6/8 March
      • St. Andrews Society, Goshen - Strathspey / Reel
      • St. Andrews Society, Goshen - 6/8 March
      • Maine Highland Games - Piobaireachd
      • Maine Highland Games - Hornpipe / Jig
      • Maine Highland Games - 6/8 March
  • Tom Ryan, Grade III Piping -- 160 points in 22 competitions
    • EUSPBA - 13th Place Overall (289 competitors)
    • Northeast Branch - 4th Place Overall
    • First Place at Maine Highland Games - Piobaireachd
    • First Place at Maine Highland Games - 2/4 March
  • John Henkel, Amatuer Drum Major -- 1 point in 2 competitions
    • EUSPBA - 10th Place Overall (40 competitors)
    • Northeast Branch - 5th Place Overall
    • First Place at Colonial Highland Games
  • Cameron Henkel Grade IV Jr. Snare -- 3 points in 2 competitions
    • EUSPBA - 24th Place Overall (76 competitors)
    • Northeast Branch - 10th Place Overall
    • First Place at Maine Highland Games - March
  • Sherm Perry, Grade IV Sr. Snare -- 3 points in 2 competitions
    • EUSPBA - 12th Place Overall (72 competitors)
    • Northeast Branch - 3rd Place Overall
    • First Place at Maine Highland Games - QMM
    • First Place at Maine Highland Games - March

March 29, 2011

After a solid year in Grade IV Sr. piping, Pipe Major Tom Ryan entered his first contest of 2011 as a Grade III soloist at the Back Bay Solos on Saturday, March 26th. He didn't disappoint. Tom took 3rd in the 2/4 march with Donald MacLean's Farewell to Oban, 3rd in the Strathspey/Reel with Maggie Cameron/Lachlan MacPhail of Tiree, and 4th in his Piobreachd, playing Lady Doyle's Salute. Congratulations Tom!

December 8, 2010

Congratulations to Tom Ryan on his upgrade from Grave IV Sr. bagpiping to Grade III Piping based on his solo performances from 2010! For information on all upgrades from the EUSPBA, please click here.

October 18, 2010
A very successful 2010 competition season has come to an end (for us at least). Here are the season standings for our individual competitors:

  • Tom Ryan, Sr. Grade IV Piping -- 146 points in 22 competitions
    • EUSPBA - 5th Place Overall (707 competitors)
    • Northeast Branch - 2nd Place Overall
  • Donald Oakes, Grade III Snare Drumming -- 4 points in 3 competitions
    • EUSPBA - 9th Place Overall (45 competitors)
    • Northeast Branch - 4th Place Overall
  • Jodi Ryan, Tenor Amateur II -- 11 points in 5 competitions
    • EUSPBA - 4th Place Overall (42 competitors)
    • Northeast Branch - FIRST Place Overall
  • Tom took home first place in seven competitions this year, and placed top three in 13.
  • Donald competed in three contests this year, winning them all!
  • Jodi placed first at the Oran Mor indoor games and finished in the top three 4 times.

Congratulations to all of our individual competitors! These are great results and will surely springboard us into a successful 2011 campaign as a full band!

May 7. 2010
Thank you to Jenny Pray at Southpaw Sign Studio. Southpaw made a great banner for the band which will be in front of the band at parades and hang from our home base at each contest! Jenny’s courtesy and professionalism is what doing business should be all about. Visit her at

April 8, 2010
Beginning on April 19th, practice will be held on Monday's at the Irish Heritage Center. Click here for directions and more information.

March 8, 2010
The band played its inaugural event on Sunday, March 7 before the Portland Red Claws Developmental League basketball game in front of a packed Portland Expo. The Red Claws hosted a Celtic night and the band played the Portland Firefighters color guard onto the floor prior to the National Anthem. After the anthem, the county flags of Ireland and the firefighters paraded off to the sounds of the band. Great job to everyone!

February 22, 2010
Bagpiper Paul Halvorson and drum student John Hardy participated in the American Lung Association’s annual Fight For Air fundraising campaign in Boston. The two Portland Firefighters were part of the team that raised more than $10,000 this year. They climbed 82 flights of stairs – 41 floors – in their full, 50+ pounds of firefighting gear. Congratulations to Paul and John who climbed the 789 stairs in 9:59 and 8:38, respectively. Great job, guys! Congratulations!

January 13, 2010
The kilts have arrived and the County Cavan tartan looks great!

January 10, 2010
Grade IV bagpiper Tom Ryan earned 2nd place in his first competition of the season hosted by Oran Mor Pipe band in Albany, NY. Tenor Drummer, Jodi Ryan is off to another great start this competition season. She earned first place since being upgraded in the contest hosted by Oran Mor;

December 13, 2009
After a summer of hard work in 2009, tenor drummer, Jodi Ryan was upgraded from Novice to Amateur II for the 2010 solo competition season. Congratulations, Jodi!


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