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Sea Island

Bagpiper


Time travel through our traditions.

Serenading sunsets for almost 20 years.


A lone figure steps onto the fairway of The Speedway course. His silhouette – with the A-line of his kilt and Great Highland bagpipes – cuts a classic figure against the setting sun. He begins to play, and the plaintive notes reverberate across the course and drift out to beyond the sea, signaling the close of another day of golf at Sea Island. Children are fascinated by the bagpipes and the piper’s traditional attire. They often trail the piper working up the courage to approach him with questions about the difference between a kilt and a skirt or to show them how the bagpipes work. Once the sky is fully dark, the piper disappears from sight, leaving the lilting sounds of Scotland floating in the evening air.

Then and Now.

The Song Begins

The tradition of an evening bagpiper hearkens back to the Old Course at St. Andrews, Scotland, considered the oldest in the world. When former Sea Island Chairman & CEO, Bill Jones III, visited the Old Course, he decided a bagpiper would be a great feature for Sea Island. Ever since The Lodge opened in 2001, guests and members gather nightly on the veranda or lawn to watch as the piper puts the Sea Island courses to sleep at night. Having a lone bagpiper serenade the sunset has been a Sea Island tradition carried on by a succession of pipers.

The Notes Continue

Several musicians currently take turns ensuring every sunset is covered. The time they play changes with the season, typically from half an hour before sunset until half an hour after. The majority of Sea Island’s current pipers learned to play the instrument for their roles at The Lodge. While the nightly repertoire include traditional tunes such as “Scotland the Brave” and “The Skye Boat Song” to “Happy Birthday” or even the theme music from Star Wars, it’s “Amazing Grace” that evokes strong emotion for the piper and listeners.

 

 

Potentially the best seat in the house.

Resurgence of the front porch puts a focus back on simpler times, when this alfresco space was the center of festivity with family and friends. Do I hear the bagpiper? Meet you on the porch swing.

Sit and Stay a While

Let us take you on a tour. Virtually.


One of the best seats in the house for the bagpiper is on your own front porch. The front porch of your cottage at The Lodge, that is. Tour each cottage below. Go ahead and pick out your seat for the show. We’ll save it for you.

A Round by the Sound

Another way to enjoy the bagpiper is during a round on Speedway, our 18-hole putting course. Sea Island Company founder Howard Coffin, who invented the Hudson motor car, discovered the Georgia coast when he came to race his cars in the 1908 Southern High-Powered Cup race in Savannah. With its twists, turns, and challenges, The Speedway’s name pays homage to the race that brought Coffin to coastal Georgia. Family friendly and always fun.

Sea Island Caesar Salad

A Colt & Alison favorite following the bagpiper.

Salad
Serves 8

Romaine Lettuce Leaves
Croutons (recipe below)

Dressing
Makes 2 cups

2 ounces white anchovies
2 egg yolks
1/4 cup dijon mustard
1 lemon, juiced
1 clove garlic, chopped
1/4 cup red wine vinegar
1 teaspoon salt
3/4 cup canola oil
3/4 cup olive oil
1 tablespoon Worcestershire sauce
1/2 teaspoon white pepper
Salt and Tobasco to taste
2 ounces parmesan, shaved, to taste

View Instructions

1. In a large wooden bowl, gently mash anchovies with a fork. Add egg yolks, mustard, lemon juice, garlic, vinegar, and salt. Whisk together.

2. While whisking, slowly add canola oil in a steady stream until mixture emulsifies. Do the same with the olive oil. Season with Worcestershire, Tabasco, and pepper, and finish with half the Parmesan. Taste and adjust the seasoning. Reserve to toss over romaine lettuce, croutons, and remaining Parmesan.

Croutons
Makes 1 Cup

1 small baguette or small Focaccia
1/4 cup olive oil
1/4 cup rosemary, finely chopped
Salt and pepper to taste

1. Preheat oven to 375°. Small dice a loaf of bread until you have 1 cup. Reserve remainder of the loaf for another purpose. Place diced bread into a small mixing bowl and toss with olive oil, rosemary, salt, and pepper until well coated and olive oil has been absorbed. Place onto a sheet tray and bake until crispy, 5 to 6 minutes.

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We're puzzled!

Back by popular demand.

This week, assemble a bird's eye view of the bagpiper's journey at The Lodge. Look closely and don't miss the St. Simons Island Lighthouse!

Memories Made.

Kelly

I have many fond memories from our trips to Sea Island. Our favorite place to have dinner is on The Lodge property. Our sons enjoy listening to the bagpiper, having a wonderful dinner and then roasting marshmallows for s’mores after. This particular trip they were able to enjoy this experience with their cousins, which made this moment so much more memorable.

Carly

I was excited when my boyfriend Evan arranged for us to enjoy drinks at The Lodge to listen to the bagpiper play at sunset. It’s such a beautiful tradition! We were meeting friends and decided to wait on the lawn for them to arrive. As we walked onto the 10th green, Evan pulled away and dropped to one knee. I hardly remember what he said as he proposed, but I must have said, “Yes!” because everyone around started cheering when he put the ring on my hand. The Oak Room had champagne waiting when we came inside, and we toasted with everyone that came through the door. The moment was perfect, and perfectly captured at one of the most majestic destinations in the world! Sea Island will always hold a special place in our lives.

Roslyn

My husband and I visited Sea Island several years ago and stayed at The Lodge. While there, many great memories were made. The most memorable would have to be the evening we sat outside and listened to the talented bagpiper play!  The ocean behind him and the sunset were so overwhelmingly captured in my mind!  I would love to go back and visit.

Share your Favorite Sea Island Bagpiper Memory!


Each evening can offer a new experience at The Lodge. Being in earshot is all it takes. Hearing the first note as you finish your round on Seaside. Hurrying to The Lodge to snag a coveted seat on the veranda. A round of family fun on The Speedway course. Or completing your relaxing day beside The Lodge pool. Are any of these your favorite Sea Island bagpiper memory?

Share Your Story

Digitally join us at The Lodge.


We’re bringing the bagpiper experience to you! Pick an evening and invite your friends and family for a pre-dinner virtual gathering. Our custom Zoom backgrounds will transport you directly to The Lodge (click button, right click, save image, load to Zoom). Turn up the tunes of our Spotify playlist, featuring a selection of our favorite bagpipe songs. And to bring it full circle, we’re providing the recipes to some of our favorite cocktails. Be sure to share your parties with #seaisland for a chance to be featured on Instagram.

A look back.

Take a return trip in time as we explore the traditions that make Sea Island so beloved. Historical photos pulled from the archives, magazine articles, nostalgic videos, and more. And create a taste of Sea Island in your home with favorite recipes associated with each tradition.

Learn More

Sweet Serenades

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