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Scottish Highland Games

Jeff May (right) competes in the Sheaf Toss during the Scottish Highland Games Saturday, April 10, 2010 at CSI in Twin Falls, Idaho. The bar was at 20 feet for this toss while the bag being thrown weighs 16 pounds. May has been competing for 22 years. (Drew Godleski/For the Times-News)

TWIN FALLS • The rules for most Scottish Highland Games are easy to follow, and you might find it fun watching muscular men and women heave ridiculously heavy weights over crossbars or throw large poles into the air.

Add some music, dancing, food and inexpensive admission and you have a Saturday outdoors on April 14.

The College of Southern Idaho’s Highland Culture Club, Diversity Council and Program Board will hold their third annual Highland Games and Diversity Faire from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. April 14 in the field near CSI’s Desert building.

The games, organized by the Eastern Oregon Throwers and Black Sheep Elite, are open to all who want to try their hands.

For $25, men and women can sign up in the hammer or stone throws or caber tossing. The stones and hammers weigh 8-12 pounds for women or 16-22 pounds for men. Competitors toss the weights over the highest mark they can clear on an overhead crossbar. In the sheaf toss, competitors use a pitchfork to fling a 12- to 20-pound weighted burlap bag over a crossbar. Cabers are long, heavy poles; a thrower must temporarily balance the caber, upright, in his hands and then heave it into the air, making it pass through one vertical revolution and land with the handheld end pointing away from him.

Performers will include Irish Dance Idaho from Boise, the Teton and District Performing Arts Pipe Band, Native American flute player Ralph Montes and the Magic Valley Irish Dancers. Vendor booths will have snacks, information and raffle tickets for prizes.

Admission is $1; children younger than 10 are admitted free.

A new feature this year will be the Excalibur Sword Pull, a feat of strength open to both spectators and game competitors, with prizes awarded to the strongest man and woman. The sword and sheath were created by CSI’s welding department.

Also that day:The welding department’s annual spring auction will be at 1 p.m. in the nearby Desert building, and the CSI Renewable Energy Club will have its mobile trailer open for viewing at the Highland Games.

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