St. Patrick’s Day at Southdown Primary School was made more special when the awesome sounds produced by an experienced bagpiper filled the building and installed a little bit of Irish in everyone
“St. Patrick’s Day would not be the same without the sounds of the pipes coming through the hallways,” Southdown Principal Michelle Marino said. “Our loyal piper Charles Armstrong has been performing at Southdown for many years and it’s become a tradition that students and staff look forward to each year.”
This marked the tenth consecutive year that Mr. Armstrong and his bagpipes have come to school, much to the delight of the more than 400 youngsters and the dozens of staff members who spend their days in the building. Dressed in full regalia, including traditional kilts, Mr. Armstrong marched up and down the hallways as his audience clapped and cheered.
Many students wore looks of fascination as they became acquainted with the variety of sounds the legendary instrument is capable of producing. Mr. Armstrong is no ordinary bagpiper. He can play to perfection and the melodies he produces are sensational. If you close your eyes, your imagination can easily carry you away to Ireland.
Mr. Armstrong’s tie to Southdown is that two nephews and a niece attended school there. They have now moved on as their educational journey has taken them to other schools, but Mr. Armstrong has returned, year after year and students and staff are always happy to see him in the hallway.
The visit provided an opportunity for students to learn about bagpipes and the culture from which they originate as well as gain insight into the traditions behind the kilts and related clothing worn by bagpipe players.
Will Mr. Armstrong be back next March to entertain and educate Southdown’s students? Reportedly this was his final visit after a decade-long run, but you never can tell when a bagpipe player might get the itch to perform.