Friday, September 16, 2016

Renaissance Newsletter #17

Past Faires and Events

Brussels revelers dress up to remember Renaissance emperor (Belgium)

Thousands of revelers wearing medieval helmets, feathers and striped pantaloons paraded through Brussels on Thursday, July 7, in a tradition stretching back over half a millennium.

The Ommegang parade commemorates the arrival of Habsburg Emperor Charles V who, organizers say, ruled over the region at a time of great change when Europe stepped out of the dark ages and more progressive ideas took hold in science, arts and philosophy.

Many of the performers, who are divided into groups with different roles, have been taking part for years. ..

Dragon's Fyre Renaissance Fair (ID)

…The Dragon's Fyre Renaissance Fair was in full swing and it drew the attention of all kinds of whimsical creatures.

Krista Wells-Grube, one of the managers and coordinators, said "We have fairies we have a ballerina we have a pirate band going on in the background."

She says the event is in its fourth year and still growing.

And some of that success can be attributed to the 20 venders…

The fair is family oriented and has an extensive amount of programs focused around children….

The kid's quest is a particularly popular attraction."So little kids can run around and they have things they have to do and it's kind of a guided tour."
But the biggest draw of the fair comes in the form of the armored combat tournament.
Ryan Weaver, one of the combatants and a manager, said “Armored combat league is a full force full contact sport that’s modeled after 14th century German tournaments."The combat is not choreographed and they get hit hard with several different styles of real steel weapons. "Last man standing, your opponents are in the fight as long as they are on their feet." And as a fully organized sport... The winners have a shot at bringing their warrior spirit to the world championships. "The US has placed in the top four every year having taken the world championships in 2014….

Renaissance Camp thrills Middle-Schoolers (TX)

For more than two decades the Cultural Arts Academy has welcomed gifted-and-talented students from several El Paso ISD middle schools to expand their knowledge of the Renaissance.

For four weeks, students immerse themselves in all things Renaissance, like Shakespearean plays and period music being played in the recorder. At the end of the program, the students put together performances for the community to enjoy…

Some of those projects included Coat of Arms and Arcimboldo-inspired portraits.

They also learned about Renaissance architecture by creating terra cotta tiles depicting famous buildings such as Bramante’s Tempietto in Rome and the Globe Theater in London.

Theater is one of the main-driving forces behind the program with students performing three abbreviated versions of famous Shakespeare plays.

This year the students performed “Taming of the Shrew,” “Romeo and Juliet” and “Macbeth…”

Student Victoria Villalobos loved playing the role of the strong and defiant Katherine in “Taming of the Shrew.”

“I like that she’s going against what was acceptable at the time,” Villalobos said.

She also liked stage slapping her character’s love interest Petruchio — an act that drew gasps from the audience. ..

Students also get a good workout through the fencing component of the program — one of the biggest draws for students.

For eighth-grader Raul Baez fencing is his favorite part, giving him a physical outlet for any worries he may have. He likes the program so much, this is his second year participating.

“I love fencing the best because at the end of the day if something doesn’t go right fencing relieves stress,” Baez said. “It really helps me feel better, and it’s fun.

Shire of Aarquelle hosts Outlands War Collegium in Buena Vista (CO)

The Shire of Aarquelle, the local branch of the Society for Creative Anachronism, hosted the Outlands War Collegium at their third annual Highlands Rapier Camp.

This year the camo offered the chance to study medieval styles of combat, such as spearmen against shield walls, and combatants will be fighting and training in full armor.

The Historic European Martial Arts Alliance was also on hand for training.

Martial classes were taught on German and Italian long sword and German, Italian and Spanish rapier. There were also arts and science classes, including glass bead making, basket weaving, armor making, jewelry and period games classes.

The Shire of Aarquelle meets on Wednesday evenings in Salida, CO to practice rapier fighting.

Vermont Renaissance Faire

…Amber and Eric Roberts of Danville provided guidance on how to be a rennie.
They mention a few must-haves for the event – Amber Roberts suggests having water, sunscreen and head wear to prevent sunburns, with Eric Roberts echoing the importance to stay hydrated…

The Event:
  • Eric: "There's music, there's people and there's dancing. So when you're first walking in, [you'll] come across the market area. As you progress through time, you'll first come across the Viking encampment and then further on is the joust field itself."
The Costumes:
  • Amber: "A rennie is somebody who would go to a Renaissance fair or medieval fair of some kind and have a good time, whether in costume that's accurate or in a fun costume. But it's all about dressing up and having a good time."
  • Eric: "I'm just an unlanded knight. Right now, I've got on a common men's hood. Also, like a linen coat. Tied about myself, I've got ... a couple of belts, as well as a horseman's longsword."
  • Amber: "I have my open London hood on. You wouldn't want your hair or neck showing if you were a proper lady. I have my long linen gown, as well as a belt and my trusty mug for when I inevitably stop for some mead..."

The Shopping:
  • Amber: "You come to the fair to eat and to drink and to buy. There's a tarot reader that I'm definitely going to see. I saw some bodices that I will need to be checking out – can always use a bodice or three."

The Food:
  • Amber: "I smell something delicious ... I have found my food. I've got some tabbouleh – and utensils are for amateurs."
  • Eric: "I have a börek and a vegetable samosa."
The Drinks:
  • Amber: "You've got to get to the mead tent. Mead is a delicious sweet drink that lingers after you've had it and leaves you feeling slightly fuzzy."

4th annual Renaissance Faire returned to the grounds of Tilton's Black Swan Inn (NH)

…Tricia Bailiere, Black Swan Inn owner, said this year's Renaissance Fair promises to transport participants back through time at a family friendly event that will be visually powerful and dramatically entertaining. 

…Basilere said. "The faire will be filled with pirates, a fire Show, live Black Powder Demonstrations, Knights dueling in hand-to-hand combat, music, story telling, vendors and much more.,,,"

Performers at this year's faire include Rufus the Mud Beggar; the Buzzards Bay Buccaneers; Brother Sylvan; the Dirge Queen; Granny Gruesome's Gleeful Tales; New England Brethren of Pirates; Brotherhood of the Arrow and Sword; Myschyffe Managed; The Primrose Pirates; Fiddler of the Shire; and The Pillage Idiots.

The list of vendors for the faire includes Emazanti Creations; Tintagle's Gate; Amalgamated Funk & Finery; The Bonnie Weaver; Judy's Creative Faces; All Things Braided; Lord Fafnir & Spawn; Lady Adia; Midnight Sun Crystals; and Silly Puffs.New vendors to this year's faire are Wolf's Head Whatever; Wild Women Wellness; Nimmita Natural Design; White Mountain Botanicals; Crafty Lil' Witch Creations; Henna Inspired; and Wilderness Creations… 

The Milton Pirate Festival (Ontario, Canada)

Marden Park a few kilometres north of Guelph has been transformed into a pirate village this weekend…

The event was originally inspired by a resurgence of interest in pirates, much of that spurred by the Pirates of the Caribbean movies, DeCoppi indicated. He said an older festival in Milton dedicated to the Renaissance would always attract a group of pirate fans, despite being historically inconsistent. Pirates came a couple of centuries after the Renaissance.

The Pirate Festival grew out of the Renaissance Festival, and it just continued to thrive,” he said.

One highlight of the event is that pirate characters in elaborate period costumes mill about the venue engaging visitors and speaking only in the pirate dialect. Among those are characters like Zephira Culigary, the apothecary, and Anne Wellington, the perfumist, who scents the air.

“Because the air downwind of these pirates can be quite foul,” she said.;;

The event has a lot of activities for children, including games, the pirate bouncy ship, and archery. A pair of dragons are lumbering around the grounds.

Live theatre by the mud people drew a large crowd, and is a main attraction. There’s magic, juggling, and a host of vendors selling trinkets…


Hieronymus Bosch Died 500 Years Ago, But His Art Will Still Creep You Out

Imaginary animals dance across the panels of artist Hieronymus Bosch's paintings: There are snails with human legs, fish with human arms and at least one spider-legged peacock. Since his death in 1516, Bosch has been called "the devil's painter," and he has been hailed as a psychedelic seer born too soon. On this 500th anniversary year, two museums have dedicated major international exhibitions to the artist, and there's a massive scholarly revamp of all that is known and thought about him.

One exhibition in Bosch's hometown of 's-Hertogenbosch, Netherlands, was so popular that its host, the Noordbrabants Museum, kept the show open around the clock for its final weekend. The Noordbrabants' Fiona Zachariasse helped curate that exhibition. She's poring over one of Bosch's most famous paintings about the wages of human avarice. She describes the punishments depicted in the last panel: "people being torn apart by dogs; put on a spit, like a sort of kebab — having a lance thrust right through the body."

Zachariasse says Bosch drew on his hometown for inspiration. "In a number of the paintings, you see souls are being made to crawl over sharpened knives. Very horrible," she says. "But the knives all bear a little maker's mark that is in fact the maker's mark of one of the knife makers here in the town..." 

Complete article with illustrations:

Sculpting with Color in Renaissance Florence


In the 15th century, Luca della Robbia (1399/1400–1482) invented a glazing technique for sculpture characterized by brilliant opaque whites and deep cerulean blues. Luca shared the secrets of his technique with his nephew and principal collaborator Andrea della Robbia, who in turn passed them on to his sons Giovanni, Luca the Younger, Marco, Francesco, and Girolamo. The Della Robbia family workshop flourished in Florence for about a century, producing expressive artworks for all spheres of life. Portraying both sacred and secular themes, it gained a strong presence in public spaces—from street corners to churches—and private homes. Production of sculpture using this technique lasted only about a century before its secrets were lost. Some of the most familiar images today of Renaissance Italy, Della Robbia sculptures have retained their original color and shine over the centuries.

“Della Robbia: Sculpting with Color in Renaissance Florence” August 9, 2016December 4, 2016 at the Museum of Fne Arts Boston, presents these works as powerful, expressive examples of the best of Italian Renaissance art. The exhibition features about 50 objects, mostly from American collections but including six important loans from Italy, never seen in the US before. The Visitation (about 1445) from the church of San Giovanni Fuorcivitas in Pistoia and the Brooklyn Museum’s newly restored Resurrection of Christ (about 1520–24) travel to Boston along with a trio of nearly life-size works from the Los Angeles County Museum of Art, the Uffizi Gallery in Florence and a private collection. The exhibition of glazed terracotta Renaissance works by the Della Robbia and rival workshops spans a variety of formats—Madonna and Child reliefs, small- and large-scale figures, narrative reliefs, coats-of-arms, and still-life compositions—that demonstrate the range and visual impact of the groundbreaking Della Robbia glazing technique.

Complete report and images:

Related article and images:

Contemporary of Titian and Follower of Michelangelo, Sebastiano del Piombo Defined Excellence in 16th Century Painting in Rome

The Art Institute of Chicago announced today the exciting acquisition of Sebastiano del Piombo’s Christ Carrying the Cross (1515/1517) to strengthen its focused collection of Italian High Renaissance painting. The first major discovery of a work by Sebastiano in recent years, it was brought to light by Colnaghi, the renowned London-based art gallery, who facilitated its transition to the museum’s world-class collection. It represents one of the most popular compositions by one of the most distinguished painters working in Rome in the first half of the 16th century. Celebrated by the founding voice of art history, Giorgio Vasari, and given major commissions by Pope Clement VII, Sebastiano was hailed both in his time and beyond as a master of inventive painting who reimagined the monumentality and power of Michelangelo’s style, and the grace and balance of Raphael’s.

“We couldn’t be more thrilled to have this rare and wonderful opportunity to bring such an important painting—our first by Sebastiano—into the Art Institute’s permanent collection,” shared Gloria Groom, Chair of European Painting and Sculpture and David and Mary Winton Green Curator. “This acquisition affirms that through the extraordinary support of our generous donors, we can take our reputation for excellence in collecting to the next level, and tell a more creative and complete story in the galleries that feels exciting and relevant to our thousands of visitors to the museum each day.”

Jorge Coll, CEO of Colnaghi offered, “It was very exciting to have discovered this lost work by such an important Renaissance master, and it is extremely satisfying to know that it now belongs in one of the most important and visited museums in the world. It is of the utmost importance for Nicolas (Cortés) and me as the new partners in Colnaghi that we continue the company’s long and storied tradition of placing important works of art in the world’s greatest museums. This painting was the subject of the first of our new series of publications called ‘Colnaghi Studies’ – catalogues written by leading scholars in order to shed light on lesser known artists and unknown works of art – and we hope that there will be many more works from the ‘Studies’ series that find such prestigious homes in the future.”

Sebastiano developed the innovative composition for Christ Carrying the Cross to heighten the emotional charge of the image. The painting’s dramatic visual impact comes through in the monumental figures and their poignant expressions, the powerful diagonals of the cross, the dynamic and sculptural effect of Christ’s drapery, and the luminous landscape background. The popularity of the composition led Sebastiano to paint several versions and variations of the subject—the Art Institute joins the Museo del Prado, Madrid; Hermitage, Saint Petersburg; and the Szépmüvészeti Museum, Budapest in sharing Sebastiano’s iconic invention with audiences from all over the world.
The painting, now on view in Gallery 205 within the Art Institute’s world-class collection of European Painting and Sculpture, offers visitors a new and exciting opportunity to understand a richer and more inclusive story of Renaissance art and is poised to educate and inspire our visitors for generations to come.

There should be a 'Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtle' named after this female Italian artist

By Victoria Nally

Art history isn’t something everyone gets a chance to learn about in school, but I bet you ten dollars you can still name four influential Italian painters off the top of your head without even really thinking about it. Heck, I can even guess who they’ll be: Donatello, Leonardo, Michelangelo, and Raphael.

No, I’m not psychic — those also happen to be the names of the four Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles…

Sadly, the world of Turtles — much like the Renaissance art world itself — has always been a bit of a boy’s club, so I put it to you that the turtle bros could use another member to round out the team. And on the day of her birth (July 8), I nominate a worthy artist who knows a thing or two about standing out from the crowd to be that turtle's namesake: Artemisia Gentileschi.

Gentileschi was the daughter of a Tuscan painter, Orazio Gentileschi, and it’s due to her father’s encouragement that she took up painting in the first place. Unfortunately, it was not a smooth path to success — the painter hired to tutor her, Agostino Tassi, was convicted of raping her at a time when getting a rape conviction required proof that the victim was a virgin prior to the attack. And even then, he was only sent to prison for a year.

Still, Gentileschi continued in her work…she gravitated so often towards portraying women as either strong, capable warriors or sympathetic, suffering victims.

In fact, you might recognize her most well-known painting, “Judith Slaying Holofernes,” which depicts the Old Testament story of a Hebrew woman who seduced an invading general and then beheaded him while he was drunk. It’s always been a pretty popular subject for painting, but Gentileschi’s is the definitely best of the bunch, mostly because Judith and her maidservant are really getting’ their hands dirty, here.

So, let’s recap: female artist, arguably more talented than her male peers but still considered an anomaly for inexcusable reasons, really good with blood and gore and female solidarity (which is just as badass as blood and gore, thank you). All she needs is a shell on her back and possibly a blunt force weapon and she’s already a superhero as it is…

Complete, funny article with illustrations:

Venetian painting of the Italian Renaissance

To celebrate the 150th anniversary of diplomatic relations between Italy and Japan, an exhibition of works from the Gallerie dell’Accademia will be held in Japan for the first time. The exhibition’s themeVenetian painting of the Italian Renaissance. While artists in Florence, the birthplace of the Renaissance, took as their principle the careful application of colors in a well-ordered composition on the basis of a clear design, the artists of Venice preferred rich coloring in bold, dramatic compositions and explored ways to directly communicate feeling and emotion. 

This exhibition will survey Venetian painting from the 15th to early 17th century through some 60 of the Gallerie dell’Accademia’s most important works. Arriving in Japan will be a dazzling array of masterpieces by painters ranging from Giovanni Bellini to Carlo Crivelli, Vittore Carpaccio, Tiziano Vecellio, Jacopo Tintoretto, and Paolo Veronese. Of special note will be The Annunciation (Church of San Salvador, Venice), a late-period altarpiece of large scale by Tiziano, the great master of the Venetian High Renaissance. An exhibition thus focused on Venetian paintings of the Renaissance period has almost no precedent in Japan. It will be a precious opportunity to marvel at paintings that counted among the splendors of Renaissance Venice, City of Water.

The Renaissance rebranding of Italy

… Michelangelo Buonarroti, the immensely talented artist and sculptor, whose works represent the acme of Renaissance art. He is the subject of the latest exhibition at the Shiodome Museum, “The Genius of Michelangelo — Majestic Renaissance Architecture.”

This is centered around sketches and letters sourced from the Casa Buonarroti, a museum created by the artist’s great nephew in a house that was once owned by Michelangelo himself…

Michelangelo was clearly fascinated by the nude form, as his work on the Sistine Chapel reveals. This exhibition tries to recreate the experience of visiting this ultimate masterpiece with vivid projections, showing the famous ceiling of the Sistine Chapel and the great wall painting of “The Last Judgement.”

But what of actual original works by the artist himself? There are several preparatory sketches of varying quality, including a rather detailed one of the Cumaen Sybil for the ceiling of the Sistine Chapel.

There are also many architectural sketches, revealing the Renaissance obsession with the classical past…



The Tallis Scholars to Perform at Arts Centre Melbourne

This November, one of the most famous and best-loved early music vocal ensembles in the world, The Tallis Scholars, will perform a sublime program of Renaissance masters …

For over 40 years, the British early music vocal ensemble have established themselves as the world's leading exponents of Renaissance sacred music, creating a sound of astonishing beauty and blend, and resetting the bar for a cappella music.

The Tallis Scholars have performed in top sacred and secular venues the world over, including the Royal Albert Hall, St Paul's Cathedral and Shakespeare's Globe Theatre in London, the Sistine Chapel, the Philharmonic Hall in Berlin and in New York at the Lincoln Center and Carnegie Hall, as well as in collaboration with Sir Paul McCartney at the Church of St Ignatius Loyola.

Highly decorated, they collectively possess three Grammy Award nominations, Gramophone magazine's Record of the Year award and three Early Music Awards….

Dubbed "the rock stars of Renaissance music" by the New York Times, the Tallis Scholars have also had their sound described "as near extraterrestrial as you can get sitting in a concert hall" by Fiona Maddocks of The Observer….

Classic fairy tale musical set at Renaissance Fair

Searching for a musical for Florida Atlantic University’s Festival Rep 2016, designated director Bruce Linser… put the question to the graduate students who would be the show’s cast. Much to his surprise, the overwhelming choice was “Once Upon a Mattress,” a fractured fairy tale adaptation of “The Princess and the Pea,” which premiered off-Broadway in 1959….

“So I looked at it and thought, “How in the world are we going to do this?’ It’s a huge show, there’s a lot of dancing, a lot of things that FAU’s program is not designed to do,” Linser says. “I wanted to figure out a way to scale down the show a little bit so that audiences wouldn’t be expecting this big blow-out musical theater production.”

His solution was to set the show at a Renaissance Festival, with a troupe of humble minstrels performing the fable. “And it just hit me, ‘Why couldn’t this just be a simple performance, a commedia dell’arte type of thing?’ ” he reasoned. “So we’re not recreating a castle, and the king and queen are not actual royalty. These are actors putting on a play on a Ren Fest stage….

On the first day of rehearsal, Linser took his cast on a field trip to a local Renaissance Festival to study the performance style he wanted. “Probably about half of the group that went had never been before,” he says. It was an object lesson in breaking the fourth wall, “dropping in and out of character to make asides to the audience. Sort of a medieval vaudeville…”

Composer, prince and murderer: classical music's goriest story

SOPRANO turned playwright Clare Norburn explores the dissonant music and life of Italian composer, prince and murderer Carlo Gesualdo da Venosa in Breaking The Rules, a concert cum play that The Marian Consort and Gerald Kydd will perform…

Clare, who studied at Leeds University and London College of Music, has a particular passion for medieval music and has sung with such early music groups as Third Voice, Fifth Element, Mediva, The Troubadours and Vox Animae…

"The performance began as a bit of an experiment at the Brighton festival, where we wanted to bring people to early music who might not otherwise go to a concert, and one way to do that is for music to collaborate with other artforms," says Clare….

Breaking the Rules is set on the final day of Gesualdo’s life, September 8 1613, when he is alone in the castle chapel of his family estate near Naples. Two weeks ago his only son died. Now he must come to terms with his own mortality, facing purgatory for his multitudinous sins, haunted by a vision of his first wife, Maria, whom he murdered 23 years previously along with her lover.

Intoning religious platitudes offers no release; only listening to music, such as his Tenebrae Responsories and madrigals, here performed by The Marian Consort, can free him.

"It was not uncommon in the Italian nobility to kill your wife if she was having an affair, which she was, so he got away with it because it was almost the done thing, like an honour killing, but it was extraordinary as it was so violent, stabbing her more than 20 times. It was all very calculated: he pretended to go hunting, came back, found them together and killed them," says Clare. "For years and years after, poems were written about it and the 'gutter press' of the late-16th century really ran with it…"

She chose to set Breaking The Rules on Gesualdo's dying day. "It gives you the biggest range of possibilities to look back on his life, and we also know that Gesualdo was obsessed with what was going to happen to him in the afterlife," says Clare. "He was caught between wanting to atone for his sins and not being able to do so."

A collection of 27 motets ensued from this troublesome dilemma. "He was only 47 when he died, but he was not a man in middle age but an ailing man, who had been ill for some time. For him, as a Roman Catholic, it meant he would be facing purgatory and damnation for what he had done, which is reflected in his Tenebrae Responsories," says Clare. "He wrote them as his 'Get out of hell free' card, meant as some kind of atonement."

Medieval Music in the Dales,

…The Medieval Music in the Dales, starting Friday, September 2, is a weekend solely dedicated to music from the era, and is thought to be a UK first. 

The festival features concerts from leading medieval performers, including harpist Leah Stuttard, hurdy-gurdy virtuoso Steve Tyler, up-and-coming wind band Blondel, Gaita from Edinburgh and Yorkshire’s own Trouvere. 

There will also be workshops on everything from Beginners’ Bagpipe to making your own reeds to recreating medieval dances. 

At the heart of the event is an international exhibition by makers of medieval musical instruments, including Danilo Turchetti, from Padua in Italy to showcase his unique medieval bagpipes. 

The open stages will offer bands and performers from all over the country the chance to make their music, and there will be more than twenty different musical acts appearing. ..


The history of the ‘great ships’ used by Henry V during the famous Battle of Agincourt

…Through the use of a soundscape filled with medieval music and facts and tales, the public was able to learn of Southampton and Eastleigh’s connections to the Battle of Agincourt, including how the ‘biggest ship in the world’ was constructed in Southampton Docks and how she came to be at the bottom of the River Hamble.
The King’s Great Ships Trail event is being run by the team behind last year's Road to Agincourt celebrations, marking the 600th anniversary of Henry V's march through Hampshire on the way to war in France. …

The trail… explored the history of the ‘great ships’ used by Henry V during the famous Battle of Agincourt. 

The special Medieval Weekend featured a host of family-friendly entertainment, including historical re-enactments, a medieval village complete with leather workers, pole turners, felters and authentic cooking and singing demonstrations from the period.
Participants had the chance to find out more about the wreck of the Grace Dieu, one of the ships lying on the bed of the River Hamble, and the opportunity to take part in medieval sports, dancing and to watch tales from the past brought to life. 

The Road to Agincourt is a two-year project linked to the 600th anniversary of the Battle of Agincourt, run by the Culture Unit of Eastleigh Borough Council.
The battle was an iconic moment in English history…

Complete article:

August - September Faires

Texarkana Renaissance Faire (AR)

September 26 - 27, 2015, Sat.–Sun. 10 a.m. - 7 p.m.
Admission: $10 / Contact: Hollie Black-Ramsey. 3700 East 50th St, Texarkana, AR 71854, (903) 908-9518, email:, web: / Site: Four States Fair Gorunds, Texarkana, 71854/ Booths: 60 / Attendance: 500 / Weapons: Must be peace-tied / See web site for camping info.

Big Bear City Renaissance Faire (CA)

August 20-21 • 2016 Admission: $15 / Contact: Lynda McGinnis, Big Bear Valley Renaissance Society, Inc., PO Box 1466, Big Bear City, CA 92315, (909) 237-0448, email:, web: / Site: Pedersen’s Mill, 39115 Rim of the World Dr., Fawnskin, CA / Booths: 65 / Attendance: 10,000 / Weapons: must be sheathed and peace-tied; no firearms / Hotels and motels nearby.

Much Ado About Sebastopol (CA)

TBA September, 2016, Sat., 10 a.m. - 6 p.m., Sun. til 5 p.m.
Admission: $12 / Contact: Guild of St. George, Sebastopol Educational Foundation, PO Box 1255, Sebastopol, CA, (707) 829-4570, email: web: / Site: Ives Park - 7400 Willow St, Sebastopol, CA 95472 / Booths: 45 / Attendance: 3,000 / Weapons: Attendees are asked not to bring weapons / See web site for info. Fundraiser for local public school.

Northern California Renaissance Faire

SEPT. 17 THROUGH OCT. 16... at the Hollister-close destination, and a variety of theme weekends lend the lark much of its loveliness. A Royal Masquerade is set for the opening weekend of October, while mythical creatures rule the final weekend of the affair. There are more to peruse, so peruse away, while also dreaming of the pageants, comedic shows, courtly processions, and all of those vendors purveying in all of your flowery crown, leather satchel needs. A maypole carousel, Stonehenge heraldry, a petting farm, face painting, and a host of other charming diversions await at the annual faire. That it is always a grand hello to autumn is one of its nicest bits, but there are several nice qualities in its quiver. Will the autumn equinox serve as some sort of time portal back, then, to the age of jousts and jests and traveling troupes? Fall does have a way of summoning magic each and every year, and, for many revelers, definitely here.

September - October, 2016, (WO) 10 a.m. - 6 p.m.
Admission: $25 / Contact: Play Faire Productions, 201-A McCray, PMB247, Hollister, CA 95023, (408) 847-FAIR, email:, web: / Site: Casa de Fruta, 10031 Pacheco Pass Hwy (Hwy 152), Hollister, CA / Booths: 145 / Attendance: 50,000 / Weapons: must be sheathed and peace-tied / See web site for camping & hotels.

Renaissance Tudor Fayre at Cameron Park Lake (CA)

TBA September, 2016, 10 a.m. - 6 p.m.
Admission: $12 / Contact: Raelynn DeBone, Two Fayre Ladies, 4546 E Ashlan, 3232, Fresno, CA 93726, (916) 223-6725, email:, web: / Site: Cameron Park Lake, 2989 Cambridge Rd, Cameron Park, CA / Booths: 35 / Attendance: 2,000 / Weapons: must be peace-tied / On-site camping available for participants.

Scottish Highland Gathering & Games (CA)

September 3 - 4, 2016, 9 a.m. - 6:30 p.m.
Admission: $15 1-day/$22 2-day / Contact: Floyd Busby, Caledonian Club of San Francisco, 312 Maple Ave., S. San Francisco, CA 94080, 925-689-0395, email:, web: / Site: Alameda County Fairgrounds, 4501 Pleasanton Ave., Pleasanton, CA / Booths: 100 / Attendance: N/A / Weapons: policy not stated / Hotels nearby.

Longs Peak Scottish-Irish Festival (CO)

September 8 - 11, 2016, 8 a.m. - 5 p.m.
Admission: $25 / Contact: Dr. James Durward, PO Box 1820, Estes Park, CO 80517, (970) 586-6308 or (800) 903-7837, email:, web: / Site: Stanley Park Fairgrounds, Estes Park, CO / Booths: 40+ / Attendance: 60,000 / Weapons: must be sheathed / Camping and hotels nearby

Michiana Renaissance Festival (IN)

August 27 - 28, 2016, 10 a.m. - 6 p.m.
Admission: $12 / Contact: Michiana Renaissance Festival, Jonathan Zook, PO Box 1892, South Bend, IN 46634, email:, web: / Site: Kamm Island Park, Mishawaka, IN / Booths: 100 / Attendance: 1,000+ / Weapons: must be peace tied / on site camping available for participants.

Celtic Festival & Highland Games  (IA)

September 16 - 17, 2016, Friday 3 p.m. - 9 p.m., Saturday 9 a.m. - 9 p.m.
Admission: FREE; Ceilidh $5 / Contact: Celtic Highland Games of the Quad Cities. PO Box 3201, Rock Island, IL 61204, (309) 794-0449, email:, web: / Site: Centennial Park, 315 South Marqutte St., Davenport, IA / Booths: 30 / Attendance: 3,500 / Weapons: call for policy / Hotels nearby.

Fishers Renaissance Faire (IN)

October 1 - 2, 2016, 10 a.m. - 6 p.m.
Admission: $12, $10 in advance; family packs available; special pricing for active and retired military / Contact: Adam Fivush, Fishers Renaissance Faire, 1 Municipal Dr., Fishers, IN 46038, email:, web: / Site: Klipsch Music Center, 146th and Olio Rd, Noblesville, IN / Booths: 80 / Attendance: 12,000 / Weapons: must be sheathed and peace-tied / Camping available on-site for artisans and entertainers; hotels nearby.

Michiana Renaissance Festival (IN)

August 27 - 28, 2016, 10 a.m. - 6 p.m.
Admission: $12 / Contact: Michiana Renaissance Festival, Jonathan Zook, PO Box 1892, South Bend, IN 46634, email:, web: / Site: Kamm Island Park, Mishawaka, IN / Booths: 100 / Attendance: 1,000+ / Weapons: must be peace tied / on site camping available for participants.

Great Plains Renaissance Festival-Fall (KS)

September 24-25 2016, 10 a.m. - 6 p.m.
Admission: $12 / Contact: Richard Cathey, GPRF LLC, 212 N Dellrose, Wichita, KS 67208, (316) 253-3392, email:, web: / Site: Sedgwick County Park / Booths: 100 / Attendance: 15,000 / Weapons: must be peace-tied / Hotels and camping nearby.

Kansas City Renaissance Festival (KS)

September 3rd through October 16th, 2016
Open Weekends Plus Labor Day and Columbus Day
10 a.m. - 7 p.m.
Admission: $20.95 / Contact: Carrie Shoptaw, 628 N. 126th St., Bonner Springs, KS 66012, (800) 373-0357, email:, web: / Site: 633 N. 130th St., Bonner Springs, KS, 15 min. west of downtown Kansas City, off I-70 / Booths: 165 / Attendance: 200,000 / Weapons: not allowed / see web site for info

The Maryland Renaissance Festival

August 27 - October 23, 2016, (WO + Labor Day) 10 a.m. - 7 p.m.
Admission: $24 / Contact: Intl. Renaissance Festivals Ltd., PO Box 315, Crownsville, MD 21032, (800) 296-7304, email:, web: / Site: 1821 Crownsville Rd., Crownsville, MD / Booths: 187 / Attendance: 290,000 / Weapons: not allowed / BR avail., Campground w/ toilets, showers, electric & water avail. w/ $75 leaning deposit & $10 surcharge per person; hotels nearby.

King Richard's Faire (MA)

King Richard's Faire, New England's largest and longest-running Renaissance Faire, announces the opening of its 35th season, to run September 3 through October 23, 2016 on weekends and Monday holidays (Labor Day, Columbus Day). Tucked away on 80 acres of enchanted forest in Carver, Mass., King Richard's Faire announces offers guests a full day of live, interactive entertainment for all ages and Saturday special events. Guests will enjoy daring knights jousting on horseback and eight stages filled with song and dance, stunts and storytelling. Guests can mingle with the King and his royal court, noble and not-so-noble subjects and skilled performers, and over 100 unique and talented artisans, including New England artists. At every turn, guests will encounter fantasy and wonder through minstrels, musicians, acrobats, stilt walkers, giant puppets, wenches, and more.

Faire hours are 10:30am-6pm every Saturday, Sunday, and Monday holidays. Tickets are $31 for adults (12+) and $16 for children ages 4-11. Children under 4 are free, and parking is free.  For special celebrations or group discounts, email The Faire is located at 235 Main Street (Rt. 58) in Carver, Mass. 02330, 508-866-5391. Visit King Richard’s Faire on Facebook ( and on Twitter and Instagram @KRFaire.

Silver Kingdom Renaissance Festival (MA)

August 20 - 21, 2016, 10:30 a.m - 5 p.m
Admission $15 / Contact: Patrick Murphy, Ye Olde Commons, 120 Northside Road, Charlton, MA 01507 / email:, web:, Site: Ye Olde Commons, 120 Northside Rd., Charlton, MA / Booths: 30 / Attendance: 1,500 / Weapons: must be peace-tied / see web site for info

Sat - 8/20 at 10:00 AM to Sun - 10/2 at 7:00 PM
The Michigan Renaissance Festival is open weekends (Sat. & Sun) August 20- October 2. The Festival is open Labor Day and Friday, September 30. Open 10am-7pm, Admission: $21.95 / Contact: Michigan Renaissance Festival, Tim Liss, 12600 Dixie Hwy., Holly, MI 48442, (800) 601-4848, email:, web: / Site: 12500 Dixie Hwy., Holly, MI / Booths: 200 / Attendance: 250,000 / Weapons: must be peace-tied / See web site for lodging.

Minnesota Renaissance Festival
There are enough performances, demonstrations, vendors and not-your-ordinary-fest-food stands to keep people of all ages engaged for a long time. Workers, mostly college students (theater majors) traverse the grounds in period costumes, authentically emulating knaves, wenches and what-have-yous of the era. I say “authentically” even though I wasn’t quite born yet in that era, but my older sister was, and I have it on pretty good authority that the performances are spot on.
The last time I was there, we attended a falconry demonstration. As we stood at the top of the amphitheater trying to decide where to sit, a falcon glided up and landed on the shoulder of one of our group. That was amazing, if a little startling.

August 20 - October 2, 2016, (WO + Labor Day) 9 a.m. - 7 p.m.
Admission: $22.95 / Contact: Erica Christo, Mid-America Festivals, 1244 S. Canterbury Rd. Suite 306, Shakopee, MN 55379, (952) 445-7361 or (800) 966-8215, email:, web: / Site: 5.5 mi on Hwy 169, Shakopee, MN / Booths: 325 / Attendance: 280,000 / Weapons: must be peace-tied / On-site camping and showers for participants; camping and motels nearby.

Minnesota Renaissance Festival

Through October 2, 2016, (WO + Labor Day) 9 a.m. - 7 p.m.
Admission: $22.95 / Contact: Erica Christo, Mid-America Festivals, 1244 S. Canterbury Rd. Suite 306, Shakopee, MN 55379, (952) 445-7361 or (800) 966-8215, email:, web: / Site: 5.5 mi on Hwy 169, Shakopee, MN / Booths: 325 / Attendance: 280,000 / Weapons: must be peace-tied / On-site camping and showers for participants; camping and motels nearby.

The New Hampshire Highland Games

September 16 - 18, 2016,
Admission: $20-$30 a day; $45 weekend pass / Contact: Derek Davidson or Lois Meredith, NHSCOT, 17 Green St, Concord, NH 03301, (603) 229-1975, for ticket sales (800) 358-7268, email:, web: / Site: Loon Mountain Ski Resort, Lincoln, NH / Booths: 30 / Attendance: 24,000 / Weapons: must be peace-tied.

Lakewood Lions Charity Renaissance Faire (NJ)

September 17 - 18, 2016, 10 a.m. - 6 p.m., Sun. til 5 p.m.
Admission: $10 / Contact: Don Alemany, Lakewood Lions Club, PO Box 1446, Lakewood, NJ 08701, (732) 414-9639, email:, web: / Site: Pine Park, Country Club Rd., Lakewood, NJ / Booths: 75 / Attendance: 7,500 / Weapons: period weapons must be sheathed and peace-tied / On-site camping for merchants; motels nearby.

Santa Fe Renaissance Faire (NM)

September 17 - 18, 2016, 10 a.m. - 5 p.m.
Admission: $10, $8 Teens (13 - 17) & Seniors, 12 & under FREE / PARKING IS FREE! / Contact: El Rancho de las Golondrinas, 334 Los Pinos Rd, Santa Fe, NM 87507, (505) 471-2261, email:, web: / Site: El Ranch de las Golondrinas, Santa Fe, NM / Booths: 50 / Attendance: 8,000 / Weapons: must be peace-tied / Check web site for lodging info.

Faeland Festival (NY)
August 19 - 21, 2016, 9 a.m. - 10 p.m.
Admission: $10 - $15 / Contact: Arielle Wolter, 2583 California Rd, Gouverneur NY 13642, (315) 323-7849, email:, web: / Site: Arielle Acres, Gouverneur, NY / Booths: 30 / Attendance: 5,000 / Weapons: NO WEAPONS, please / On-site camping available for participants.

New York Renaissance Faire

Through October 2, 2016, (WO & Labor Day) 10 a.m. - 7 p.m.
Admission: $24 / Contact: REP, 600 Route 17A, Tuxedo, NY 10987, (845) 351-5174, email:, web: / Site: Sterling Forest, 45 minutes from NYC, 600 Rt 17A, Tuxedo Park, NY / Booths: 150 / Attendance: 150,000 / Weapons: must be sheathed and peace-tied / Hotels & B&B within 15 min.

Bill Johnston Pirate Days (NY)

August 12 - 21, 2016, 10 a.m. - 7 p.m.
Admission: FREE / Contact: Alexandria Bay Chamber of Commerce, 7 Market St., Alexandria Bay, NY 13607, (315) 482-9531, email:, web: / Site: Scenic View Park, Alexandria Bay, NY / Weapons: not allowed

Faeland Festival (NY)

August 19 - 21, 2016, 9 a.m. - 10 p.m.
Admission: $10 - $15 / Contact: Arielle Wolter, 2583 California Rd, Gouverneur NY 13642, (315) 323-7849, email:, web: / Site: Arielle Acres, Gouverneur, NY / Booths: 30 / Attendance: 5,000 / Weapons: NO WEAPONS, please / On-site camping available for participants.

Sterling Renaissance Festival Through August 28, 2016 (NY)

Admission: $25.95 / Contact: Lisa Interlichia, Sterling Renaissance Festival, Inc., 15385 Farden Rd., Sterling, NY 13156, (800) 879-4446, email:, web: / Site: 15385 Farden Rd., Sterling, NY / Booths: 100 / Attendance: 100,000 / Weapons: must be peace-tied / See web site for lodging info.

Fort Bragg Renaissance Faire (NC)

September 17 - 18, 2016, 10 a.m. - 6 p.m.
Admission: $10/carload / Contact: Chris and Mia Pugh, Medieval Fantasies Company, PO Box 13, Churchville, VA 24421, (540) 294-1846, email:, web: / Site: Smith Lake Recreation Area, 1200 Honeycutt Rd, Fayetteville, NC / Booths: 40 / Attendance: 5,000 / Weapons: not allowed / on-site camping available for participants.

Ohio Renaissance Festival

SEPTEMBER 3 — OCTOBER 23, 2015, (WO + Labor Day) 10:30 a.m. - 6 p.m.
Admission: $20, $18.95 adv online / Contact: Ohio Renaissance Festival, Cheryl Bucholtz, PO Box 68, Harveysburg, OH 45032, (513) 897-7000, email:, web: / Site: SR. 73 between I-71 & I-75, Harveysburg, OH (gps: 10542 E SR 73, Waynesville, OH) / Booths: 140 / Attendance: 175,000 / Weapons: must be sheathed and peace-tied / Check website for lodging info.

Faerieworlds Festival Summer (Faerie & Celtic Music and Art) (OR)

September 2-4 2 016, Fri. 2 p.m. - 1 a.m., Sat. 12 p.m. - 1 a.m., Sun. 12 p.m. - 11 p.m.
Admission: $20-24 per day or $60 weekend pass / Contact: Kelly or Emilio Miller-Lopez, PO Box 51177, Eugene, OR 97405, (514) 687-0945, email:, web: / Site: Mount Pisgah, 34999 Frank Parrish Rd., Eugene, OR / Booths: 140 / Attendance: 10,000 / Weapons: not allowed

Shrewsbury Renaissance Faire (OR)

September 10- 11, 2016, 10 a.m. - 6 p.m.
Admission: $11 / Contact: The Shrew, PO Box 604, Philomath, OR 97370, (541) 929-4897, email:, web: / Site: Hwy 223 & Grant Road, Kings Valley, OR / Booths: 150 / Attendance: 19,000 / Weapons: must be peace-tied; no projectile weapons / On-site camping for participants.

Ye Merrie Greenwood at Glastonbury Faire (OR)

September 24- 25, 2016,, 10 a.m. - 6 p.m.
Admission: $6 / Contact: Ye Merrie Greenwood Players, Marjorie Kunigsky, 6015 W 20th Ave., Kennewick, WA 99338, (509) 783-7727, email:, web: / Site: Port of Toledo, Toledo, OR / Booths: 30 / Attendance: 300 / Weapons: must be peace-tied / Participant camping on-site; Host Hotel-Newport Comfort Inn-541-265-6203.

Pennsylvania Renaissance Faire

The year is 1509. King Henry VII, victor of the War of the Roses and founder of the Tudor dynasty, has died. His eldest son Arthur, who was to have taken his place, has also succumbed to illness. And so England’s throne and future now fall to the king’s second son: Henry Tudor.
Henry has chosen the Shire of Mount Hope as the site of his coronation, and on this glorious festival day our good Lady Mayor has spared no expense. She has prepared music, dancing, acrobats, jousting, and even a game of human chess! And after a day full of revelry and merriment, England’s new King shall be crowned upon the Globe stage with a fantastic celebration to start his new reign.
The 13-week 36th season of the Faire runs Aug. 6 through Oct. 30. The Faire is open Saturdays and Sundays, from 11 a.m. to 8 p.m., and Labor Day Monday, on the grounds of Mount Hope Estate, 2775 Lebanon Road, Manheim.
Festivities includes more than 90 daily shows on open-air stages and the village streets, with music, dance, and action-packed performances. The entertainment is endless as the citizens of the Shire fill the streets with improvised song, swordplay, and even mud begging. Man-powered rides, a gaming village, a fight circle, a dungeon museum and an amazing maze all add to the thrill of a Faire visit…

…Over 20 Royal Kitchens dot the Shire serving up turkey legs, German favorites, smoked pork, prime rib sandwiches, savory pies, walking tacos and luscious desserts like cupcakes and brownies, fudge and chocolate dipped treats. Swashbuckler Brewing Company Ales and Mount Hope Wines are available at eight pour houses. New is the Cider House featuring fresh Lancaster County Cider available in Sweet, Peach Vanilla and Seasonal Specialties.

Through October 30, 2016, (WO & Labor Day) 11 a.m. - 8 p.m.
Admission: $30.95 / Contact: Pennsylvania Renaissance Faire, 2775 Lebanon Road, Manheim, PA 17545, (717) 665-7021, web: / Site: Mt. Hope Estate and Winery, Lancaster, PA / Booths:100 / Attendance: 200,000 / Weapons: must be peace-tied / No on-site camping; hotels and campgrounds nearby.

Pittsburgh Renaissance Festival

Through September 27, 2015, (WO + Labor Day), 10:30 a.m. - 6:30 p.m.
Admission: $18.95 / Contact: Rocky Mountain Festivals, which hosts Colorado Renaissance Festival, 112 Renaissance Lane, West Newton, PA 15089, (724) 872-1670, email:, web: / Site: 112 Renaissance Lane, West Newton, PA / Booths: 100 / Attendance: 60,000 / Weapons: must be sheathed / Camping and hotels nearby.

Village Renaissance Faire (PA)

September 17 - 18, 2016, 11 a.m. - 6 p.m.
Admission: $5 / Contact: Ken Hone, 727 Penns Park Rd., Wrightstown, PA 18940, (215) 598-3322 or (267) 304-8060, email:, web:, / Site: Middletown Grange Fairgrounds, 576 Penns Park Rd., Wrightstown, PA 18940 / Booths: 40 / Attendance: 6,000-10,000 / Weapons: must be peace-tied / On-site camping for participants only; hotels nearby.

The Enchanted Chalice Renaissance Faire (SC)

September 9 - 10, 2016, Fri., 5 p.m. - 11 p.m. - Sat., 10 a.m. - 6 p.m.
Admission: $12, Children $8 / Contact: Todd Coulliard, Enchanted Chalice Renaissance Faire, 1135 State Park Rd, Greenville, SC 29609, (864) 271-4883, email:, web: / Site: Greenville Unitarian Universalist Fellowship, 1135 State Park Rd, Greenville SC / Booths: N/A / Attendance: N/A / Weapons: must be sheathed and peace-tied / Hotels nearby.

Mid-South Renaissance Faire (TN)

August 20 - 28, 2016, (WO) 9 a.m. - 6 p.m.
Admission: $13, Children 6 - 12 $8, 5 & Under FREE / Contact: Beth Kitchen,, (901) 508-3360, web: / Site: Shelby Farms Park Conservancy in Memphis, TN on the Mullins Station Rd. side of the park. / Booths: 50 / Attendance: 9,800 / Weapons: must be peace-tied / Hotels nearby.

Utah Renaissance Faire

August 26 - 27, 2016, 10 a.m. - 6:30 p.m.
Admission: $10 / Contact: Richard Thurman, 848 E 1475 N, Lehi, UT 84043, (801) 361-1945, email:, web:, / Site: Thanksgiving Point, UT / Booths: 50 / Attendance: N/A / Weapons: must be peace-tied / Hotels nearby.

Camlann Village Festivals (WA)

Through September 2016 , (WO) 12 p.m. - 6 p.m.
Admission: $10 / Contact: Roger Shell, Camlann Medieval Assoc., 10320 Kelly Rd. NE, Carnation, WA 98014, (425) 788-8624, web: / Site: 4 miles North of Carnation, WA / Booths: 20 / Attendance: 8,000 / Weapons: must be sheathed / Camping available off-site, inns nearby.

Washington Midsummer Renaissance Faire

August 6 - 21, 2016, (WO) 10 a.m. - 7 p.m.
Admission: $18 / Contact: Tracy Nietupski, Washington Renaissance Arts & Education Society, P.O. Box 583, Vaughn, WA, 98394, (800) 587-0172, email:, web: / Site: The Kelley Farm, 20021 Sumner-Buckley Hwy., Bonney Lake, WA / Booths: 75 / Attendance: 30,000 / Weapons: must be peace-tied / see web site for info.

Washington Midsummer Renaissance Faire

August 6 - 21, 2016, (WO) 10 a.m. - 7 p.m.
Admission: $18 / Contact: Tracy Nietupski, Washington Renaissance Arts & Education Society, P.O. Box 583, Vaughn, WA, 98394, (800) 587-0172, email:, web: / Site: The Kelley Farm, 20021 Sumner-Buckley Hwy., Bonney Lake, WA / Booths: 75 / Attendance: 30,000 / Weapons: must be peace-tied / see web site for info.

Bristol Renaissance Faire (WI)

July 9 - September 15, 2016, (WO + Labor Day) 10 a.m. - 7 p.m.
Admission: $23.95 / Contact: Shawn Henry, REC, 12550 120th Ave., Kenosha, WI 53142, (847) 395-7773 x100, web: / Site: 125520 120th Ave., Kenosha, WI / Booths: 180 / Attendance: 200,000 / Weapons: must be sheathed and peace-tied / Camping, pay phones, showers, privies for participants; camping and motels nearby.

Bristol Renaissance Faire (WI)

July 9 - September 15, 2016, (WO + Labor Day) 10 a.m. - 7 p.m.
Admission: $23.95 / Contact: Shawn Henry, REC, 12550 120th Ave., Kenosha, WI 53142, (847) 395-7773 x100, web: / Site: 125520 120th Ave., Kenosha, WI / Booths: 180 / Attendance: 200,000 / Weapons: must be sheathed and peace-tied / Camping, pay phones, showers, privies for participants; camping and motels nearby.
Bristol Renaissance Faire (IL/WI)
People tend to have mixed reactions when you tell them you're going to the Bristol Renaissance Faire. I know this because I go every year and half the time I get a positive response and the other half it's something like "I slept through English Lit in high school" or "have fun, dork."
I get it, partying like it's the year 1599 isn't everyone's cup of mead, and others would rather not sport a tunic or a bosom-boosting corset and talk like they just galloped from the pages of "King Lear." But the truth is, you don't have to dress up – although I highly recommend it because it's fun – and you can make it through an entire day at the Faire without once saying "good morrow" or "fair thee well." I promise.
Over the years, the Ren Faire has attracted many other emphatic groups other than 16th Century-philes, including fantasy creatures, steampunk fans, goth/dark angels, pirates, wizards, witches, Dr. Whovians, Celtic enthusiasts, Tolkien characters and more.
Aside from the bawdy entertainment, mushroom stew, men in kilts, human-powered rides, nod to the occult, knife hurling, romping closing ceremony and the chance to drink cider from a horn, I realized this year that my attraction to the Faire pierces deeper…
Complete article and lots of great pictures:

Couple found love and weekend work with Bristol Ren Faire
Ed and Elizabeth Dawson's first date was to the Bristol Renaissance Faire, and it blossomed into a romance and a summer weekend avocation for the Elgin couple.
The year was 1999, and Elizabeth already was a veteran of attending and participating in the Elizabethan gathering in the Wisconsin woods just across the border from Illinois that runs from early July until Labor Day weekend.
"I have vivid memories of visiting Bristol with my family as a child, and have a blurry photo of my brother and I sitting next to a lion. I have a purple sparkly unicorn painted on my face from the face painters," Elizabeth said. "My maternal uncles and cousins have been season pass holders since they started selling season passes, and they were the ones who gave me the idea to make my own costume as a guest, back when I was about 14 years old."
Ed said that until that fateful date, he had frequently gone to the faire over the years with friends and family, but as a spectator.
In 1994 — Elizabeth's junior year in high school — she and two female friends auditioned together "after having spent most of the previous summer attending the faire in our homemade costumes and having the times of our lives."
Her friends ended up in a dance troupe, and Elizabeth would up as part of a new troupe called the Greene Children.
"We were a group of people who'd been stolen by the fairies as children and had lived a number of years in the land of Fairy where our bodies aged but our minds hadn't," she said.
Elizabeth performed at the faire until 1996, then took off seven years while in the Army. When her enlistment was up, she returned to perform for one year with a Celtic crafting group called Thistlecroft.
But back to 1999 and that initial date.
"It was still bittersweet for me to go, as many of my good friends still performed, and I missed it so very much," Elizabeth recalled. "So Ed mostly stood around and watched me hug other people. To this day he swears he had a wonderful time because he could see that I was so happy."
Elizabeth said the two attended the faire at least once every season until her enlistment was up and she was free to perform again in 2004.
"At that time, my good friend Heather Last was performing with her husband in the Trayned Bandes. When Ed would come up to visit me, he'd often stop by to see Heather, and she and her husband encouraged Ed to come up and perform for a day with them," Elizabeth said. "He enjoyed it so much that he returned to do so several times that season, and then joined them full time in 2005, when I transferred to that group as well to be with him and Heather."
Ed is a part of Bristol's fight cast group called By the Sword.
"We are a troupe of stage combatants who provide guests a taste of live swordplay on the streets and stages," Ed said. "These fights are part of their own storyline arc that progresses throughout the day."
A day's work involves two scripted stage scenes that include everyone in the group sword fighting; one in the morning to start the story and another in the evening to wrap things up, Ed said.
"The rest of our day is improvised street scenes and interactions with the audience that generally escalate into smaller individual sword fights," he said. "We do 15 street performances. I participate in four of those and as such I do six fights a day…

Fascinating must read article, with pictures:


Middle Platte Renaissance Faire (WY)

August 19 - 20, 2016, Fri. 1 p.m. - 8 p.m., Sat. 10 a.m. - 8 p.m.
Admission: $10 / Contact: Rita Townley, Stage III Theatre, 900 North Center Street, Casper, WY 82601, (253) 380-3821, email:, web: / Site: Central Wyoming Fairgrounds, 1700 Fairgrounds Rd, Casper, WY 82604 / Booths: 40 / Attendance: 1,000 / Weapons: must be sheathed and peace-tied / On-site camping available for participants; other camping nearby.

BC Renaissance Festival (British Columbia)

Dates: Saturday Aug.27 and Sunday Aug.28th from 9am to 7pm. www.bcrenfest
778-926-FEST (3378) Place: Albion Fairgrounds, 23448-105 Ave. Maple Ridge,BC, Canada. V2W-1G3

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