New Zealand Pre-Premier Award

In 1989, a dance troupe with family and friends from various parts of New Zealand, chiefly Auckland, Hamilton and Whangerai visited the Antigonish Highland Games. Some of the New Zealand delegations were descendants of Nova Scotia who left St. Ann’s for Waipu, New Zealand, in the late 1950’s.

The “Highland Games” culture is strong in New Zealand and members of this particular group made a habit of celebrating the midnight before the Waipu Games each New Years with a mass participation “all hands up and all feet dancing” hillside Highland Fling on Donald Fraser;s land overlooking the Bream Bay. For Games lovers, these games are a must to see.
Pat Bourgoyne on behalf of this dancing troupe presented the Antigonish Highland Society with an intricately carved Maori plaque to commemorate their visit. The warrior faces on the shield are inset with Paua (abalone) shells.

The late Peter Ryan of Auckland taught many of the dancers in this group but illness prevented of making the trip to Nova Scotia. To commemorate his work with youth, the trip his mates took, and in in celebration of the links between Nova Scotia and Waipu, is presented annually to an Antigonish Town or County Pre-Premier dancer in Beginner, Novice, or Intermediate who has been chosen by the judges as the dancer demonstrating the “most promise”.

Year Name
1989 Julie MacPherson
1990 Jacklyn MacDonald
1991 Valerie Chisholm
1992 Shenna MacDonald
1993 Susan Boyd
1994 Jill Deyoung
1995 Susan Boyd
1996 Katie Rawding
1997 Bridget Coady
1998 Tara Chisholm
1999 Robin Scott
2000 Emily Ives
2001 Jillian Scott
2002 Katie MacDonald
2003 Kayla MacDonald
2004 Janelle Marchand
2005 Breah MacEachern
2006 Riely Wilson
2007 Maria Landry
2008 Courtney MacDonald
2009 Erin Gilfoy
2010 Hannah Delorey
2011 Megan Smith
2012 Julia Mae MacDonald
2013 Jaelyn Rovers
2014 Jaelyn Rovers
2015 Adelaide MacDonald
2016 Ava Rogers