Pipe-A-Thon on Tap for New Year’s Eve

Courtesy photo  Bagpiper Andy MacKay (left) teams up with the Blues Brothers: “Joliet” Jake and Elwood, and lots of other generous Alamedans to raise money to fight cancer during the New Year’s Eve Pipe-a-Thon.

Pipe-A-Thon on Tap for New Year’s Eve


Scottish bagpiper offers unique opportunity for revelers to celebrate while raising money to help fight cancer

For the third year running, Alameda resident and Scottish ex-patriot Andy MacKay will play “Auld Lang Syne” on the bagpipes in every bar in Alameda. That’s how he celebrates the New Year and raises money for the American Cancer Society. 

“New Year’s Eve is called ‘Hogmanay’ back home in Scotland,” said MacKay. “So, we’re doing our own version in the Bay Area — HogmaBay — to bring some Scottish cheer to Alameda. It’s becoming an Alameda tradition.” The Pipe-a-thon raised more than $3,800 for the American Cancer Society last year.

MacKay will be accompanied on the whirlwind early New Year’s Eve trip by “The Collectors” a.k.a. Jake and Elwood Blues. Rumor has it that they and the Pipe-a-thon team will all be in kilts, adding to the spectacle! 

MacKay’s performances during the Pipe-a-thon will raise money for a cause near and dear to his heart. “I lost my father, Bertie MacKay, to cancer last year in the United Kingdom,” he said. “My father was a great influence on me and played a big part in his local neighborhood, so I’d like to emulate that in Alameda.” He will be collecting money to support all affected by cancer.

The Pipe-a-thon starts at McGee’s on Park Street at 6.30 p.m. before visiting Alameda Island Brewing Company, Speisekammer, Lemon Tree, Churchward, American Oak, Lost Weekend, Hobnob, Lucky 13, Club House, Z’s, The Swell Bar, Forbidden Island, Wally’s, Fireside, Shamrock and finishing at the 1400 in the Crolls Building at Webster Street and Central Avenue around 8 p.m. 

MacKay is asking the community to come out to the bars, cheer him on and help fight cancer with donations. You can find more information, and also make donations to the American Cancer Society online at: www.hogmabay.org and on Twitter: www.twitter.com/hogmabay.