Founded in 1872 by the Presbyterian Church, which has its roots in Scotland, Lyon College has celebrated its Scottish heritage in many ways over the years, from the choice of its athletic mascots -- the Scots and Pipers -- to the creation of its own distinctive burgundy and navy blue tartan, now registered in Scotland.
The most important way in which Lyon honors its Scottish connection, however, is through the Scottish Heritage Program, designed to teach, preserve, and celebrate the Scottish arts and traditions in America. Offering a minor focusing upon the traditions of Scottish music and a range of courses and scholarships in the Scottish arts, the program has become one of the most significant in the nation for students interested in developing and refining their skills in bagpiping, drumming, or Highland dancing in the stimulating setting of an excellent liberal arts college.
Lyon College was established in 1872 by the Presbyterian church. During the 1980s college administrators thought to honor the Scottish roots of the church and the school by creating a Scottish Heritage Program. Since that time the program has grown, and given birth to an internationally recognized pipe band, a Highland dance program, a minor in Scottish music, a music major with bagpipes as the primary instrument, and the premier Scottish festival in the region.
The mission of the Scottish Heritage Program is to serve as ambassadors for Lyon College, to continue to preserve and promote Scottish music, history, and traditions through such activities as the The Arkansas Scottish Festival; Lyon College Pipe Band; Community Outreach; and by partnering with area churches in kirkin' o' the tartan worship services.
Scottish Heritage Scholarships
Scottish Heritage scholarships are awarded to pipers, drummers, Highland dancers. Scottish fiddlers, and accordian players that can contribute to our Ceilidh band are also considered as candidates. Prospective students that have already been accepted to Lyon College will receive first consideration. Scholarships are based on a candidate's ability to contribute to our program's goals, and to succeed as a Lyon student.
For Scottish Heritage scholarship consideration contact Pipe Major Jimmy Bell directly at firstname.lastname@example.org
For information about all Lyon College scholarship opportunities, visit our scholarships & aid programs page.
Arkansas Scottish Festival
For over a quarter of a century the Arkansas Scottish Festival has been one of the premier gatherings in the south for honoring Scottish heritage and traditions. Featuring pipers - drummers - and bands, Highland dancing, heavy athletics, Celtic music, clan and family histories, sheepdog demonstrations, vendors of Gaelic goods and services, the Arkansas Scottish Festival offers something for everyone. Mark your calendar for every April, bring your friends and family, and join us in the fun. If you aren't Scottish when you get here, you will be when you leave.
For more information, visit the Arkansas Scottish Festival website.
The Lyon College Pipe Band is comprised of students, faculty, and staff of Lyon College, as well as volunteer musicians from Batesville Arkansas and the surrounding communities. Under the direction of Pipe Major Jimmy Bell, the band performs at official college functions such as convocations and other ceremonies, in community parades, regularly performs in venues around the state of Arkansas, and competes at festivals and games throughout the United States and abroad.
Lyon pipers, drummers, and dancers are also involved in teaching the Scottish arts to interested parties through the Outreach Program.
If you would like to become a part of the band, engage the band for a performance, or are interested in participating in the Outreach Program please e-mail Jimmy Bell at: email@example.com or call 870-307-PIPE.
For more information, visit the more comprehensive Lyon College Pipe Band website.
Piping Summer School
Every year the Scottish Heritage Program sponsors a piping summer school and brings in world-reknowned instructors to provide quality instruction in a congenial setting on the beautiful Lyon College campus. For dates, more information, and a registration form, JUMP.