Founded in 1971 by P/M Archie Cairns, the PPBSO Ottawa Branch actively promotes piping and drumming in Eastern Ontario and Western Quebec.
The Branch organizes a number of events through the year, most notably the solo Knockout Series. Three piping events (A, B and Over-40) and two drumming events (A and B) provide local amateurs with a lively competitive environment that promotes off-season development. A variety of local and guest judges from across Canada, Scotland, Ireland and the United States regularly provide expert perspectives and perform recitals after every event, for the enjoyment of spectators and competitors alike.
The Branch also organizes the Glengarry Cup, an open March, Strathspey and Reel piping contest. The Cup was donated by the Glengarry Pipe Band. Past winners have included Andrew Hayes, Colin MacLellan, Colin Clansey, Andrea Boyd, Bruce Gandy, and Michael Grey.
The Ottawa Branch Indoor Games are held in May and are an important event for soloists and bands preparing for the outdoor season. The event has been held in Kemptville for several years, after having been held previously in Winchester and various locations in Ottawa.
The Branch also organizes workshops throughout the year to encourage the development of local talent. Workshops are presented for pipers and drummers of every ability level with a view to promoting success in solo and band competition.
The Branch maintains an active presence online to provide information and gather feedback from the local membership.
The main hub of this platform is ppbso-ottawa.org which features news stories from the local piping and drumming scene, as well as an interactive calendar of local events. The site is also used to manage registration and information on competitive and educational events.
The Branch Facebook group is also used to inform members of upcoming events and to share photos and discussions.
The Branch is also on Twitter (@OttawaPPBSO), which is used to send messages and images to followers both locally and around the world and to live tweet from Branch events, giving followers a “play-by-play” of events in progress. Tweets are also used to direct traffic to news items and stories on the Branch website.
For information on these events and the work that the Ottawa Branch is undertaking, please visit us at ppbso-ottawa.org.