- Education and Science
A Three Year Adventure Through the Renaissance Faire
Every Renaissance Faire is a new Adventure!
For the past three years I have gone each summer on an adventure through the Renaissance Faire. The Renaissance Faire is an adventure? Yes. It definitely is! If you have not gone to one, then put it on your bucket list. There is something for everyone of any age at the Renaissance Faire and trust me, you do not want to miss out on the fun again!
Since I am so passionate about visiting the Renaissance Faire, I have created this lens as a peek into my three years of adventure there. Each time I discover something new and exciting. Although, I still return to my absolute favorite, which is honey mead with a HUGE turkey leg. So why should you visit? Well, take a look and see!
The Renaissance Faire Adventure Began in 2010
My friend who has been going to the Renaissance Faire for years told me, "you must wear a costume, it is essential to the experience." Well, I did not have a costume on me so she (an avid collector of Halloween costumes) insisted I use one of her fifteen types. The only one which fit me was the fairy princess. So there ya go! I went as a princess and she decided it was time for her to whip out her Xena costume. Xena the warrior princess and me (just a princess) were off for my very first time at the Renaissance Faire!
*Note* If you are going to complain we are not historically accurate...you will just be horrified by future inaccurate costumes to come in years two and three.
Historical Renaissance Costumes
If you are going the historical way, then consider purchasing Renaissance Faire costumes on Amazon. They are VERY expensive if you want to buy at the actual Renaissance Faire. If you decide to wear whatever you feel like, then go right ahead. It's the Renaissance Faire! No one truly cares unless you are naked. Trust me. People will care then.
Enter the Renaissance Faire.. - Step Back in Time
Entering the Renaissance Faire is crazy, you have people dressed from head to toe in medieval costumes and others just wearing their regular clothes. The atmosphere is filled with excitement because people are ALWAYS moving. Sure, they may sit still to eat but there is so much to see no one wants to miss a moment. You have to start moving or get swept along in the crowd. Not to mention suddenly someone next to you will break out into a sword fight or start chasing after another person in a medieval skit!
Have you ever been to a Renaissance Faire?
Yes. It was...
Tis time to quench ye thirst!
Before you start watching the mud show, shopping, or seeing the joust, you must choose your beverage. The Honey Mead is actually gluten-free (yay) so of course, I have that! My friend took a better pose than me with the bottle. We had to take a quick picture and return it because you cannot just buy a bottle and walk around like a ye old drunk. No, you get nice little cups which you then drink as you meander throughout the faire.
Not a fan of alcohol? They have soda, juice, and a wide variety of drinks. There truly is something for everyone at the Renaissance Faire so make sure you are well-hydrated before soaking up the sun and sights!
The Beggar in a Box
You will find a lot of random sights within the Renaissance Faire. For instance, you may just be walking past and a poor beggar pops out of box. Sounds weird? It definitely was but you could tell the old man was having so much fun that it made me laugh. Not enough to give him some money but still, what a strange job to have!
A Historically Inaccurate Year 2!
The Very Dirty 'Mud' Show
My second year at Renaissance Faire was my first for experiencing the Mud Show. The Mud Show is actually pretty self-explanatory. It's a comedy show with lots of...mud. I have a strange sense of humor but even I was laughing so hard especially when the poor guys got shoved in the mud. The mud was the gross super thick kind too but you could tell they were having to much fun to care about getting dirty. I still laugh at the experience and you need to see this show to believe it. A warning: if you want a good seat, you better get there early. We were a few minutes early and barely got seats in the back row!
The Travelocity Gnome?!
Don't Be a Wench! Wear a Costume!
The second year of Renaissance Faire my friend went as Sailor Moon and I went as sailor anime girl (I warned you historically accurate people). Our whole group was in costume, except for one person. He did not have a costume so the guy doing the stocks drenching decided he wanted to waive the fee as this clearly deserved some punishment. He got put in the 'wench' stocks and my friend very kindly soaked his head before the guy dumped three buckets of water and left him soaking wet. So if you go in a group, you might not want to be the one who decides not to wear a costume.
Shopping at the Renaissance Faire is Always a Fun Experience
You can find just about any type of medieval weapon you could dream of at the Renaissance Faire. This shop had just about the most medieval stuff you could find and all on mannequins. This mannequin happened to be my favorite. He was rather unattractive as facial features go but I really liked the spikes on the shoulder armor. Definitely picture worthy!
They take their Renaissance Faire VERY seriously
A Steel Rose is Forever (almost)
Every year I go to Renaissance Faire, I find the steel roses. They are always there and always in bloom. Thus why I have to take a picture because they happen to be the perfect flower. One which says I love you and our love will never wilt away. Why do I not buy one if I like them so much? Dear me, if you have seen how much stuff I own from traveling around the world you will definitely understand why I do not have the room for one.
The Elusive Steel Rose
Looks like you will have to go to Ren-Faire if you truly desire a steel rose for your collection. The best I could do were steel rose earrings or pretty metal flowers for your garden from Amazon.
Renaissance Faire Fashion (Not Cheap)
There are some gorgeous, gorgeous dresses to be found for sale at the Renaissance Faire. So why did we not buy anything lovely? The price tag is just as beautifully high to match. Still, you can take pictures next to these works of art but we did not risk trying one on. That is for serious Renaissance Faire people who have the means to do so or just like to invest in such outfits. Also, if I wore one now I would probably pass out from the heat within ten minutes as opposed to an hour the third Renaissance Faire visit.
Narnia? No. Just another guy at Ren-Faire!
Love those Turkey Legs!
One of my favorite parts of Renaissance Faire - The Ginormous Turkey Leg!
One of the first things I decided when I heard about Renaissance Faire was that I would eat a turkey leg. Not one of those puny things you get at dinner. A turkey leg almost as big as my face! Since that first one, I have always made sure I got one each year. The last year my friend hand-delivered it to me in the medical building. Sadly, it had to be accompanied by about ten mini cups of gatorade but I still got my turkey leg!
We devoured them. Barbarian Style.
There is no picture of us actually eating the turkey legs because we did not 'eat' them. We dug in and devoured them. I am pretty sure the people around us probably inched away from our insane hunger. When you are at the Renaissance Faire with a turkey leg, you do not carve it up with a knife and fork, you go crazy on the turkey leg. As you can see from the picture, we demolished ours.
Year three with person 4 behind the camera!
Finding Love at the Ren-Faire
Every year we go to the Ren-Faire, we get compliments and picture requests. We always take a photo with the people as well to remember the moment. One time we put it on facebook claiming they were our 'friends with no facebooks,' immediately called on that because evidently everyone has a facebook (not true but okay). However, my friend and I did take pictures with the nicely-dressed men. They looked nice but sadly, were not real. Perhaps you will have luck with finding love when you visit the Renaissance Faire.
Sword Fights at Renaissance Faire
Even the people in our group got caught up in the atmosphere for a sword fight. Once again, nowhere near historically accurate but Renaissance Faire is one of the few places where people treat a sword fight like it happens all the time. This may be because most of the serious Renaissance Faire people are sporting their own form of weaponry. You would be surprised at the immense variety you can find!
Samurai, Ninja, and Medieval Swords - *Note: Do not buy unless 1) its legal 2) you won't cut your hand off
Loving all things Japanese I must admire their katanas. I actually used two (fake ones) in my samurai geisha costume this past Halloween. It's not historically accurate to wear them on your back the way I did but it looked way cooler so of course I had to do it. Again, do not buy if you are going to go to jail for purchasing a sword and definitely back away if you are clumsy or just completely lost on their use. I refuse to feel bad if you slice off your hand because you did not heed my warning.
Little People with a Little Me
The Dungeon at Ren-Faire
Behind us lies the opening to 'the dungeon' a place which brings back memories of Rothenberg, Germany. Why? Every time we visit Rothenberg my mother has us revisit the torture museum where she then reads every single plaque. So as an ode to my childhood, I visited the Renaissance Faire dungeon museum after striking a picture pose first, of course.
The Torture of the Chastity Belt
I cannot remember seeing a chastity belt in the Rothenberg museum. Most likely because the medieval people did not view it as a torture device but something useful. Reading the plaque, it mentions many woman actually died because of infection from the belt. A fate which seems very likely given the design which I am pretty sure was done by a man. The things you see and remember at Renaissance Faire and now you know why the chastity belt is no longer in vogue (let us hope so anyway).
Books on Torture Through the Ages
I have seen just about any torture device I could imagine in the Rothenberg museum in Germany. Not to mention, most of those are devices which were actually used at one point. The different types of torture devices are actually a bit fascinating in their own way. They had devices for people who talked to much or women who argued with their neighbors would have to wear strange things. I am so glad we no longer solve minor disputes with torture devices. Thank goodness for not living in the medieval ages!
Medieval Europe Meets...Us!
Amazement abounds at the Renaissance Faire
One of my favorite shows to see (regardless of if it is Ren-Faire or not) is the Aerial Silk acrobatics. These woman are amazing. They climb, flip, and stop your heart by nearly dropping only to gracefully pull themselves into place. I would love to have their talent but I definitely do not. So instead I will simply enjoy from the comfort of the ground.
On to the Joust!
One of the last parts of the Renaissance day is the joust. The joust? Yes. Just like the knights of the medieval ages. They wear the outfits, carry a lance, and 'joust.' Probably not entirely historically accurate but people died back in those days and I would prefer not to see the same thing happen at the Renaissance Faire. If you want to see the show, you must get there extremely early. Everyone seems to show up for the last main event of the day so grab your turkey leg and go enjoy the jousting!
Jousting Armor, Jousting Shows, and of course a book or two on the sport!
I once saw part of the modern jousting show on television. The experience was a little strange but the men seemed very enthusiastic over their 'new' sport. Maybe it could be your sport too? You will have to take a look at some of the information found here and decide for yourself!
The Adventure is over...For now
One of the prettiest sites of the Renaissance Faire is the view from the bridge across the water. I think this is a fitting final view for the end of this lens. I hope you enjoyed the adventure and are inspired to visit Renaissance Faire for yourself!