Knox Scots get ready to party

Sandra ClarkPowell

It sounds like fun.

The Scottish Society of Knoxville will celebrate the life and legacy of poet Robert Burns on Saturday, Feb. 3, at the Holiday Inn on Executive Park Drive. Dress is Highland formal black tie (optional).

Ron Jones of Powell is the group’s vice president, and he can’t wait. “We always have a good time,” says Jones. Ticket deadline is Jan. 23.

Entertainment will be by the Good Thymes Ceilidh Band, which regularly performs at Boyd’s Jig & Reel in Knoxville’s Old City.

Robert Burns, you may recall from a distant literature class, was prolific poet who wrote in almost-English. He’s best known for the verse: O would some power the giftie gie us to see ourselves as others see us.

The social hour begins at 5 p.m. with a pipers’ call to dinner at 6. A steak dinner will be followed by a tribute to Burns, who wrote some 500 songs sung all over the world. “He was a big supporter of the American revolution,” says Jones.

Doug Harrill of Walland is president of the Scottish Society of Knoxville, which was organized in 1986 at the home of Jim and Dottie McKinney. Membership is open to those of Scottish and Scots-Irish background and interests. The first formal dinner was held that fall.

Folks interested in attending the dinner or joining the group can contact Harrill at 865-983-1534 or or Jones at 865-947-3394 or

Jones grew up in North Knoxville, graduating from Central High School. He has lived in Powell since 1975 and currently lives in Broadacres with wife Annette. He teaches at Roane State’s Oak Ridge Institute for Continued Learning, with classes on the Vikings and Scots-Irish.

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