Friday, September 16, 2016

Renaissance Newsletter #18

Past Faires/Events

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:

The 4th Annual Renaissance Faire returned to the Black Swan Inn

…The Black Swan Inn lineup consisted of a colorful and motley cast of characters. Some were local residents, while others participated who live elsewhere in the state. A few live outside of New Hampshire.

They went by such names as Rufus the Mudbegger, Lord Aidan Fafinar, Lady Fafinar, the singing group Myschyffe Managed, Brother Sylvan the Bard, Sam Handwich, the New England Brethren of Pirates, the Dirge Queen, Granny Gruesome's Gleeful Tales, Brotherhood of the Arrow and Sword, Fiddler of the Shire, The Pillage Idiots and the Jilly Beans Fire Show.

Myschyffe, as in Mischief, Managed is a group of madrigal a cappella singers out of Manchester who specialize in medieval and Renaissance tunes with a decidedly slanted twist. The seven-member group is led by Lord Aidan Fafinar of Derry, also known as Bruce Hoskins.  The guy in the group wearing the wolf's mask is Rufus the Mudbegger, real name undisclosed, from Nashua.

On Saturday afternoon, Myschyffe Managed sang an English Renaissance tune written by Thomas Morley called "My Bonnie Lass, She Smileth."  They followed it up with a variation of the same tune written by P.D.Q. Bach, a fictitious composer — supposedly "the forgotten Bach" — invented by musical satirist and iconoclastic radio host "Professor" Peter Schickele.

The name of the updated tune was "My Bonnie Lass, She Smelleth."  Myschyffe Managed followed that tune with an a cappella version of "Goodnight Sweetheart Goodnight" from the 1950s.

The campy style continued across the way with the New England Brethren of Pirates, led by Brandon Berry of Manchester.  Berry in a pirate costume is identical to actor Johnny Depp as Captain Jack Sparrow.  

Berry said his group has between 25 to 30 members, and is growing.  The group is devoted to all things pirate, with the emphasis on the dashing non-historical side of the pirate saga as depicted in Hollywood, from Erroll Flynn to Johnny Depp…

Berry fought a padded sword "duel" with 8-year-old Rowan Reeves, of Piermont, with Reeves holding his own. In the NEBP area, there were a number of pirate-themed games for kids and grownups alike.

The Jilly Beans Fire Show featured fire tosses with whirling chains, fire snakes and a cracking bullwhip demonstration by Jillian Demarco and Josh Hamilton, both of Grafton, Mass. At one point, Demarco, using her bullwhip, snapped a strand of uncooked spaghetti extending from Hamilton's mouth.

There also was an appearance by Brother Sylvan the Bard in full monk's costume.  Brother Sylvan, reading from a tiny scroll, also goes by the name of Ed Pacht, and he's from Rochester.  He bills himself as a "poet-writer, both tired and retired."

A tarot card reader also was on the scene Saturday. She was a young woman with a pronounced Slavic/Russian/Romani accent.  In real life, her name is Bekka Hoskins, and she's not from the old country.  She lives in Derry, and currently is a student at Plymouth State University. Her European accent, wherever it came from, was totally convincing.

Playing violin at the entrance of the Black Swan was Liydia Alstrom, a high school student from Madbury.  It was her first time at the Renaissance Faire, and she said she was loving it because "it's relaxed, but there's lots to see, and it's a nice environment to play in…

Robin Hood Festival. (England)

Thousands of visitors flocked to Sherwood Forest to sample the medieval delights of the Robin Hood Festival. The fun-packed event, which is the historic forest’s 32nd festival was in celebration of Nottinghamshire’s most famous outlaw… Visitors have enjoyed colourful displays with costumed characters and medieval music, craft stalls, storytelling, comedy and have-a-go archery. They were also amazed by compelling battles between Robin Hood and his Merry Men as they took on the Sheriff of Nottingham, as well as jousting tournaments and falconry demonstrations.


Fra Bartolommeo - the Divine Renaissance

At the Museum Boijmans Van Beuningen this autumn fRotterdam, Netherlands - rom October 15 2016 until January 15 2017 ) discover the masterpieces of Fra Bartolommeo (1473-1517), the Italian monk and artist from the famous monastery of San Marco in Florence. He, Leonardo da Vinci, Raphael and Michelangelo were the four most important artists of the High Renaissance. 

Paintings by Fra Bartolommeo have never been seen in the Netherlands before; some have never even left Italy. After five hundred years these paintings will be reunited with their preparatory studies in Rotterdam. Loans are coming from some of the world’s greatest museums, including the Uffizi in Florence, the Art Institute of Chicago and the Louvre in Paris.
Museum Boijmans Van Beuningen has the largest collection of works by Fra Bartolommeo in the world. With hundreds of drawings from the two famous albums owned by the Florentine collector Niccolò Gabburri, the museum has a world-class treasure trove. The exhibition will showcase more than 150 drawings and ten paintings. Marvel at the masterfully drawn preparatory studies, practical aids in the working process, but also works of art in their own right. The paintings, ranging from a small diptych to impressive altarpieces four metres high, are the glorious end result.

The celebrated portrait Fra Bartolommeo painted of his spiritual source of inspiration, the hellfire preacher Girolamo Savonarola, is also coming to Rotterdam. This major exhibition – a unique opportunity to learn about and understand this great master artist and the time in which he lived – will be staged in Rotterdam only.

The great art cover-up: Renaissance nudity

Researchers at the University of Cambridge have discovered that a skirt was crudely painted over the naked Eve in a Renaissance manuscript soon to go on view at the city’s Fitzwilliam Museum. Some time between the 16th and 18th centuries a particularly prudish owner had this image bowdlerised, even though the nudity of Adam and Eve is a venerable and respectable religious theme.
It’s far from the only incident where Renaissance art has been considered so sensual and provocative that it has been censored, or even destroyed. Works of art get lost for many reasons, but there is a suspiciously high destruction rate for those involving nudity. Leonardo da Vinci’s Leda and the Swan was one of the first openly carnal depictions of myth in art, delighting in a big-bosomed, curvy-hipped Leda. Today, this painting is only known through drawings and copies. A French owner probably destroyed it deliberately. 

Leda and the Swan is a particularly troubling Greek myth: understood literally, it is the tale of a woman who made love to a swan.. Not only did someone obliterate Leonardo’s version, but yet another pious fool destroyed Michelangelo’s (admittedly highly perverse) painting of Leda.
Michaelangelo gives Leda the face of his male assistant Antonio Mini and presses her/his lips to the tip of the swan’s hard beak. This suggestion of fellatio may be one of the factors that pushed a prude to destroy the painting. Even a copy that survives in the National Gallery has a controversial history: in the 19th century, it was kept in the director’s office because it was considered too disgusting to be on public view.

Another racy Renaissance painting in the National Gallery was, until comparatively recently, censored just like Eve in the Cambridge manuscript. Bronzino’s great, and stupendously sensual painting An Allegory with Venus and Cupid (about 1545) had a flimsy veil added to make Venus “decent”. A myrtle branch was also added over Cupid’s buttocks. The nipple Cupid is caressing was painted out. These clumsy additions and erasures date from the 19th century. Only in 1958 did restorers remove them to reveal the full glory of Bronzino’s masterpiece…

Complete article and illustrations:

 New documentary, Hieronymus Bosch, Touched by the Devil

Pieter van Huystee’s new documentary, Hieronymus Bosch, Touched by the Devil, made its US theatrical premiere on Wednesday, July 27. This year marks the 500th anniversary of the Dutch master painter’s death….Pieter van Huystee tracks down Bosch’s 25 or so surviving paintings, recording the meticulous work of archivists to definitively attribute the work to the artist (10 family members painted) as well as the jousting by Dutch and Spanish curators over granting access to the masterpieces. (The Garden of Earthly Delights, the Prado’s Mona Lisa, has not left Spain in 400 years and it’s not about to anytime soon.) The discovery of a “new” Bosch in a small Kansas City museum (“It’s like your child just won the Nobel Prize” – Julian Zugazagoitia, Director of the Nelson-Atkins Museum of Art), and the controversial decision by experts that two of the Prado’s Bosch works are more correctly attributed to “the workshop of H. Bosch,” all figure into the action.

The artist’s vivid imagination spawned precise, grotesque, salacious juxtapositions: “a bird-headed monster wearing a cooking pot as a helmet while devouring a man whose backside emits fire, smoke and a flock of blackbirds.”- Tom Rachman, The New York Times….

Renaissance Period were loaded with the foods modern diets warn us about -- salt, sausages, bread and more bread

Our desire for indulgent meals may be over 500 years old. A new analysis of European paintings shows that meat and bread were among the most commonly depicted foods in paintings of meals from the 16th century.

For the study, published in Sage Open, researchers started with 750 food paintings from the past 500 years and focused on 140 paintings of family meals. Of the 36 Renaissance Period paintings, 86% depicted bread and 61% depicted meat while only 22% showed vegetables.

Interestingly, the most commonly painted foods were not the most readily available foods of the time. For example, the most commonly painted vegetable was an artichoke, the most commonly painted fruit was a lemon, and the most commonly painted meat was shellfish, usually lobster. According to the authors, these paintings often featured food that was indulgent, aspirational or aesthetically pleasing.

Palazzo Venezia's Hercules Room restored

Four-month-long restoration work to bring back to its original splendor the Hercules Room of 15th-century Palazzo Venezia in downtown Rome has kicked off.
    The room will be open to the public during the restoration as of September.
 The work will concern the room's wooden ceiling and frescoes representing some of the 12 labors of Hercules, which have been attributed by a number of art historians to Italian Renaissance master Andrea Mantegna.
    The renovation will be carried out by L'Officina, a restoration consortium directed by Paolo Castellani, an art historian at the Polo Museale Lazio, the State museums of the region around Rome.
    The room is one of the most important and refined at the palace built by Cardinal Pietro Barbo in the mid-15th century, shortly before he became Pope Paul III….

    It is located on the first floor, also called 'piano nobile' in ancient Italian aristocratic palaces because it was where the noble owners would live.

    The wooden ceiling and top part of the walls feature, among others, family crests and the representation of some of the 12 labors of Hercules, a series of episodes concerning penance tasks carried out by the great Greek hero….

Exhibition Dates:
September 26, 2016–January 8, 2017

Beginning around the year 1000, Jerusalem attained unprecedented significance as a location, destination, and symbol to people of diverse faiths from Iceland to India. Multiple competitive and complementary religious traditions, fueled by an almost universal preoccupation with the city, gave rise to one of the most creative periods in its history. Opening at The Metropolitan Museum of Art on September 26, the landmark exhibition Jerusalem 1000–1400: Every People Under Heaven will demonstrate the key role that the Holy City, sacred to the three Abrahamic faiths, played in shaping the art of this period. In these centuries, Jerusalem was home to more cultures, religions, and languages than ever before. Through times of peace as well as war, Jerusalem remained a constant source of inspiration that resulted in art of great beauty and fascinating complexity.

Jerusalem 1000–1400: Every People Under Heaven is the first exhibition to unravel the various cultural traditions and aesthetic strands that enriched and enlivened the medieval city. The exhibition will feature some 200 works of art from 60 lenders worldwide. More than four dozen key loans come from Jerusalem's diverse religious communities, some of which have never before shared their treasures outside their walls.

Exhibition Overview

The exhibition will examine six specific factors that made medieval Jerusalem an exceptional source of artistic inspiration: 

The Pulse of Trade and Tourism: Often understood as the crossroads of the known world, Jerusalem was a thriving urban center, teeming with locals and tourists, new arrivals and long-timers, merchants and artists, soldiers and scholars. The exhibition will evoke the many wares of the marketplace, including ceramics produced locally and imported from as far away as China. Textiles on view will reconstruct the fashion sensibilities of Jerusalem's residents, including, surprisingly perhaps, their predilection for printed cottons from the Indian subcontinent. The shared taste of the region's wealthy inhabitants confounds efforts to distinguish the owners' identities, let alone their ethnic or religious heritage. Jewels that are recognizably Islamic in technique correspond to contemporary descriptions of the trousseaux of Jewish brides. A remarkable gathering of Cross reliquaries speak to the links between Jerusalem and Europe.

The Diversity of Peoples: Dozens of denominations and communities contributed to the artistic and spiritual richness of the city. The historical record surrounding medieval Jerusalem—a "city of foreigners"—includes both harmonious and dissonant voices from many lands: Persians, Turks, Greeks, Syrians, Armenians, Georgians, Ethiopians, Indians, and Europeans from each of the Abrahamic faith traditions passed in the narrow streets of the city—not much larger than midtown Manhattan. Visitors will be astonished, for example, by the numerous distinct alphabets and different languages of prayer. Exemplifying this will be Christian Gospel books in Arabic, Greek, Armenian, and Syriac, a Samaritan Bible in a distinctive Hebrew script, and the biblical book of Kings in Ge'ez, the language of Ethiopia, given by that land's king to his community in Jerusalem.

The Air of Holiness: The exhibition will attempt to evoke the city's sacred iconic monuments, with their layered history and shared spaces. Though Jerusalem can appear eternal, it has undergone enormous change. Seemingly immutable elements of Jerusalem's sacred topography were understood differently in this period. Medieval maps show us that Christians understood the Muslim Dome of the Rock and the Aqsa Mosque to be the Ancient Temple and the Palace of Solomon, respectively. Manuscripts and rare documents demonstrate that medieval Jewish pilgrims focused most of their attention on the city's gates and the Mount of Olives, rather than the Western Wall.

Among the highlights of this section are five sculpted capitals from the Church of the Annunciation in Nazareth belonging to the Franciscan Community of Jerusalem. These pristinely preserved works, unearthed at the beginning of the 20th century, powerfully demonstrate the skill and imagination of the sculptors and the dramatic relationship between faith and art during the brief but exceptionally fertile Crusader period. Met conservator Jack Soultanian has prepared them for exhibition; this is the first time the ensemble has left Nazareth.

The Drumbeat of Holy War: Intimately bound with the belief in Jerusalem's sanctity and the sense of exclusive ownership it instilled is the ideology of Holy War. This period witnessed the intensification of both crusade in Christianity and jihad in Islam. The exhibition offers an important opportunity to present these concepts, so charged in our own day. Art was recruited to justify war, presenting it as beautiful and divinely sanctioned. A manuscript depicting weapons created for the great Islamic warrior Saladin presents them as exquisite goldsmith's work while a sculpted effigy (newly-cleaned for the exhibition) depicts a French nobleman as a crusader in full battle armor for eternity. 

The Generosity of Patrons: The exhibition will introduce visitors to some of the real men and women who altered the aesthetic landscape of the city. The name of Melisende, the Frankish-Armenian Queen of Jerusalem, is linked to a celebrated Psalter, which will be presented as a larger witness to her activity as a patron of churches and scriptoria. An unprecedented gathering of luxury metalwork will evoke the patronage of Al-Nasir Muhammad ibn Qala'un; this dazzling display appropriately conjures up the munificence of this most important Mamluk patron of Jerusalem.

The Promise of Eternity: Finally, this is the first exploration of art that springs from the belief, common to Judaism, Christianity, and Islam, that Jerusalem stands at the gates of heaven. The exhibition will include masterpieces of Persian illumination that bear witness to the key role of the Holy City in the life of Muhammad and in the Muslim faith tradition. Alongside these will be Hebrew manuscripts in which the glittering implements of the Temple symbolize the longing for redemption. An imposing jeweled shrine represents the Heavenly Jerusalem as Christian imagined it.

Catalogue and Related Programs

A lavishly illustrated catalogue appropriate for specialists and general readers alike will accompany the exhibition.  More than fifty scholars from the United States, Europe, and the Middle East have contributed to the catalogue.  Published by The Metropolitan Museum of Art and distributed by Yale University Press, the book will be available in The Met Shop (hardcover, $75.).

The exhibition will be accompanied by a variety of education programs at The Met Fifth Avenue. Exhibition tours will be offered throughout the run of the exhibition. A Family Afternoon on the theme of "Daily Life in Jerusalem" and a Met Escapes gallery tour for visitors with dementia and their care companions will also take place.

Adam Gopnik, critic-at-large at The New Yorker, will be joined by scholars, historians, and other thought leaders in a stimulating discussion series called "Imagining Jerusalem: The Golden City in Art, Lore, and Literature." Topics to be explored include the city's many images, poetic uses, and spiritual reverberations. Additional information is available at

The oratorio Al-Quds: Jerusalem by celebrated American composer Mohammed Fairouz was commissioned by MetLiveArts for the exhibition. Including poetry by Naomi Shihab, the world premiere will be performed on Friday, December 9, by the Grammy-nominated Metropolis Ensemble (Andrew Cyr, conductor). Tickets start at $65.

A previously planned event, "Feast of Jerusalem"—two nights of inspired conversation and Hafla (family-style feast) in the Museum's Petrie Court Café on Friday and Saturday, November 18 and 19,  with cookbook authors Laila el-Haddad and Maggie Schmitt (The Gaza Kitchen: A Palestinian Culinary Journey) and chef and restaurateur Yotam Ottolenghi (co-author with Sami Tamimi of Jerusalem: A Cookbook)—is sold out.

And, at The Met Cloisters, the vocal ensemble Schola Antiqua of Chicago will perform the sacred repertoire of Jerusalem: Georgian and Armenian hymns; cantorial psalms; Sufi devotional music; and Jewish, Christian, and Muslim calls to prayer. The program, "The Suspended Harp: Sounds of Faith in Medieval Jerusalem,"will take place on Sunday, October 23, at 1 and 3 pm. Tickets start at $40.


Ralph Vaughn Williams fascination with English Renaissance Music

Ripe with an intimate humidity and a potent cocktail of bug spray, pinots, and cheese, the Koussevitzky Shed welcomed Sir Andrew Davis, violinist Lisa Batiashvili, and the Boston Symphony Orchestra.

Davis and the BSO began with a clear-eyed vision of the Fantasia on a Theme by Thomas Tallis by Ralph Vaughn Williams. The composer’s fascination with English Renaissance Music colors much of his work, and this Fantasia is no exception. The music of Tallis and his Renaissance countrymen Byrd and Gibbons (who also helped shape Anglican choral liturgy) is never trying to assert itself. To our Bach-tuned ears, the modal harmonic language seems riddled with anguished cross relations and at times seemingly unresolved harmonic structures. However, underneath those impressions, the listener is taken on a decidedly spiritual quest, rather than one of individualism. Vaughn Williams captures this aesthetic for a post-modal world. Hear Thomas Tallis’s Third Tune for Archbishop Parker (Why F’umth in fight) [here] and Orlando Gibbons’s “Lord Salisbury’s Pavan” [here]….

Complete article:

“The High Renaissance” concert will be performed a cappella

The Albany Chorale (GA) began preparing for its 2016-17 performance season on Aug. 8, one that Chorale Director Marc Boensel says will be challenging and ambitious as the group continues to push to be the region’s premier vocal ensemble.

“The Chorale members asked me to push them this year,” Boensel said last week. “So I said, ‘OK, I can push.’ They’re excited, but they also know they’re going to have to work hard at it.”

The most challenging performance on the schedule will come in mid-February, the third concert of the season. That program, titled “The High Renaissance,” will be performed a cappella.

“This will be a new experience for them,” Boensel, who is in his second season of directing the group, said. “The Chorale has never done a concert before without any accompaniment.”

The group is usually supported by Meri Beth Hillard on piano and sometimes has other accompaniment as well, as it will when it performs next spring with the Albany Symphony Orchestra at two ASO concerts.

“They’ll be performing High Renaissance music,” Boensel said of the Feb. 16 concert, set for First Presbyterian Church of Albany. “It’s going to be powerful for them … and a powerful experience for the audience.”

He said that concert will require the most of the Chorale members, both in performance and preparation in rehearsals.

“It’s going to be the biggest challenge the group’s ever had,” he said…

Summer Festival of Sacred Music with German Renaissance Composers (NYC)

The 22nd annual St. Bartholomew's  Summer Festival offered a service of sacred music from the German Renaissance including works by Hans Leo Hassler, Gregor Aichinger and Michael Praetorius.

Hans Leo Hassler (1564-1612) was born in Nuremberg and studied in Venice with Andrea Gabrieli and was a colleague of Giovanni Gabrieli. He returned to Germany and in 1602 became chief Kapellmeister in Nuremberg. Much of his music shows the influence of the Venetian School, particularly his polychoral compositions.

Gregor Aichinger (1564-1628) was a Catholic priest and the organist to the highly influential merchant-banker family of the Fuggers in Augsburg. He was the first German composer to make use of the basso continuo, a stylistic transition into the Baroque period.

Michael Praetorius (1571-1621) was one of the greatest Lutheran composers in Germany. He served as Kapellmeister in Lüneburg and for the Duke of Brunswick. Although a large portion of his sacred music output was in German based on Protestant hymns, he composed Latin motets as well, many expunged of references to the Virgin Mary.

St. Bartholomew's  Choir sang Hassler's Missa Secunda, Aichinger's Regina Caeli and Praetorius's Salve Rex Noster….

Medieval music and poetry

…For the upcoming concert, aptly called “We Minstrels 3,” Ms. Patton will shine a light on the Dark Ages to the haunting music of 12th century Occitania (the land east of the Atlantic through France, then south to Spain); the breeding ground for Eleanor of Aquitaine’s Court of Love, with its troubadours and trobairitz (lady performers); then on to the violin, guitar, and keyboard instruments that gave us Renaissance music. 

In her recent scholarly dip into medieval music, Ms. Patton developed an observable crush on a certain poet, singer, and carillonneur named Bernard de Ventadour. “Most people have never heard of him, but he was the 12th century equivalent of Bob Dylan,” Ms. Patton said, “an incredibly talented folksinger-songwriter whose music just blew everybody away. Everybody was playing his songs then, and they were so good that we’re still playing those songs and using his lyrics 900 years later.” (If you care to acquaint yourself with this rock star of yore, go to YouTube for a number of imagined stylings of Ventadour’s songs).

Ventadour, master of the classical form of courtly love poetry, sang of unrequited love, a love so profound and yet tragically unobtainable that the only recourse for the poet is to walk the earth and share his sexy grief — or, as some perceive of it, divine longing — with whoever might chance to stop and listen. Scholars — including Mr. Merck and Ms. Patton — have pondered who this proud, unyielding lady of Ventadour’s might have been. Many have posited it was Queen Eleanor herself, who brought Ventadour with her to her husband Henry II’s Plantagenet court in England (Katharine Hepburn played her in “The Lion in Winter,” with Peter O’Toole as the libidinous king). Later, Ventadour returned to Toulouse. Later still, he retreated to a monastery, and presumably died there. …

Complete article:

The book of Fenagh 500 festival

This year marks the 500th anniversary of the writing of "The book of Fenagh " in 1516.

The book of Fenagh is one of Ireland's most important medieval manuscripts. The book is kept in the Royal Irish Academy in Dublin. To mark the 500th anniversary, a Book of Fenagh 500 festival took place over the August bank holiday weekend….

On Saturday afternoon there were walking tours with Chris Reid (archaeology lecturer in Sligo Institute of technology) exploring the village, the abbeys, the graveyard and all the monastic ruins. Those who joined these walking tours learned that the village of Fenagh is one of Ireland's best kept archaeologist secrets.

Within the confines of the village, dominated by the medical churches and related earthworks, there are more than a dozen significant archaeological monuments representing almost every major period in history.

Another delightful event that took place was a concert of medieval music in St. Catherine's Church of Ireland late on Saturday afternoon.

Finally on Sunday,…there was a medieval barbeque in the community centre,..


The piece is a mixture of English translations of poems by the medieval Jewish scholars Solomon ibn Gabirol and Shmuel HaNagid, who both lived in Spain, and pieces by Federico García Lorca. How did you choose these six texts? 

Various people encouraged me to look at the extraordinary Hebrew poetry from medieval Andalusia, including my former teacher Alexander Goehr. I bought the marvelous volume of translations “Dream of the Poem,” made by the American poet Peter Cole, and was immediately struck by the beauty and breadth of vision in these texts. I then contacted Cole directly, and he proved to be a generous and sensitive guide for me while conceiving the nature and structure of the work. The countertenor sings the Hebrew poems in English, but I wanted a different text for the chorus — and I eventually found this in late Lorca. But there is a strong link between the two poetic sources, as both were inspired by early medieval Arabic poetry from Andalusia.

Complete article:

Society Of Creative Anachronism

Barony of Bonwicke medieval recreation group: More chivalry, less plague

It’s not exactly a Middle Ages reenactment group. Barony of Bonwicke is similar, but with somewhat of a happy twist.

“We like to recreate the Middle Ages and the Renaissance as it should have been, and not as it actually was,” said “Lady Eleanor” Zeina Khan.

Fellow recreater Kristy “Kristyan” Cook has the perfect analogy: “A lot more chivalry and a lot less plague…”

“You get to learn about history in ways you can’t in a book,” said Robert “Maerricbjartmarson” Holland. “You can read about battles and clothing, but experiencing it is completely different.”

Maerricbjartmarson — pronounced “Merick-bee-art-mar-son” — grew up fascinated with medieval-era history and myths; King Arthur and Merlin always seemed to catch his attention. A history fair in sixth grade introduced him to the group of which he is now a member: “The SCA was there, and I thought they were the neatest thing.”

Krystan joined because she likes the art; Lady Eleanor because she likes the time period.

“Every time I would go to Renaissance fairs people would say, ‘You look like you belong.’ I said, ‘Society of who?’ and after a while I decided to look them up,” Eleanor said….

Bonwicke represents Lubbock, Midland-Odessa, San Angelo and other parts of West Texas. You could call it a chapter of the Society for Creative Anachronism — an international group — but it’s not that simple. First, the Society for Creative Anachronism is divided into kingdoms. Each represents multiple U.S. states or Canadian providences, or entire countries. Bonwicke’s kingdom — Ansteorra — consists of Texas and Oklahoma…

The first thing you ought to know is this ain't a Ren-fest.

"Renaissance festivals have basically turned into medieval-themed Comic-Con," Thomas Schroeder said. "What we do, we try to pick a specific time in history for the event to be themed around."

Schroeder is a member of the Society for Creative Anachronism, an international organization that, according to its website, is "dedicated to researching and re-creating the arts and skills of pre-17th-century Europe."

The group divides the world into "kingdoms." Most of Texas falls into the Kingdom of Ansteorra, and a large swath of West Texas, from Plainview to Rankin, and San Angelo to Abilene, is known as the Barony of Bonwicke.

When I was a kid, my mom took me to my first Renaissance festival in California. People there were very intent on making it authentic — at the time it was run by the SCA — and it was fun. But fast-forward through several decades and many fantasy movies, and now it's difficult to recognize what is accurate and what isn't at a latter-day Ren-fest. There weren't any trolls, fairies or barbarians strolling around during William Shakespeare's time, which is the period of the English Renaissance.

Members of the SCA are more intent on learning about and researching a period of history than they are recreating "The Lord of the Rings." As with Civil War and American frontier re-enactors, the aim is to educate and thus be educated.

Barony members like Schroeder and his wife, Rachael, wear period clothing and adopt names that fit with the era. Accordingly, Schroeder's barony name is Gabriel Thomas, while Rachael's is a little more involved: Alys Anna Vondemstern. Or something like that; the spelling seemed a little fluid as I asked…

What Willow and I wanted to see, however, was the fighting.

Historic combat of this caliber requires some adjustment. Everyone wears armor, but it is made from modern components. Schroeder called his "sport armor" because though made from metal plates, it was lighter and not as encompassing as the plate armor used in actual warfare.
"All of the body armor is made from stainless steel, most of it is 18-gauge," he explained, gesturing across his body...

Complete article and pictures:

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.

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

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.

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.

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.

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.

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.

The New York Renaissance Faire: Where Fantasy Rules

The New York Renaissance Faire is back in the Orange County town of Tuxedo for its 39th season, and it is putting on a show you may find yourself looking forward to each and every year. I hadn’t attended this event before, so I wasn’t sure what to expect. My 4-year-old daughter Brooklyn, her dad, and I made the scenic 45-minute drive from upper Manhattan to see what the Renaissance Faire is all about.

Once we arrived, it completely blew my mind. The faire is set up as a 65-acre Elizabethan village. It feels like being on a movie set. This celebration of the 16th century is filled with hundreds of costumed performers, jousting tournaments, music, festive foods, magicians, manually powered rides, and more than 100 shops selling mostly handmade wares. To add to the fun, most of the attendees dress up, too. The venue even offers rental costumes if you feel inspired to rent one for the day.

Next we tried the amusement rides. There are about a half dozen manually powered rides spread throughout the grounds. We rode the Dragon Swing, Bedlam Barrel, Crow’s Nest, and carousel. These are all unique, hand crafted, and pushed or spun by hard-working Faire employees, all dressed in character. As much fun as these were, I think the highlight was the games. Brooklyn and her dad played four rounds of archery, both eventually hitting the bullseye!

We refueled at Willow's Fair food pavilion, which is new this year and very charming. It's a row of restaurant stalls that offer a smorgasbord of foods, including vegetarian and gluten-free options. We ended up with sausage on a stick, pizza, and dragon chips. All were deliciously greasy and perfect fair food. While eating we watched performers dance and perform while many attendees joined in on the fun. It was a great break in our day and gave us a moment to take in the spirit of the festival and see how much fun everyone was having….

Complete, great long article with pictures:

Niagara Celtic Heritage Festival & Highland Games (NY)

September 17 - 18, 2016, 10 a.m. - 10 p.m., Sunday until 6 p.m.
Admission: $25 weekend, $20 Saturday, $12 Sunday / Contact: Vicki Banks, (716) 778-5730, email:, web: / Site: Krull Park, 6108 Lake Rd., Olcott, NY / Booths: 75 / Attendance: 12,000 / Weapons: must be sheathed and peace-tied, no functional firearms / Hotels, camping, other lodging nearby. See website.

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 2016, 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.

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.

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.

Ye Merrie Greenwood Faire (WA)

September 24 - 25, 2016, 10 a.m. - 6 p.m.
Admission: $10 / Contact: Ye Merrie Greenwood Players, Marjorie Kunigisky, 6015 W 20th Ave., Kennewick, WA 99338, (509) 783-7727, email:, web: / Site: Columbia Park, Kennewick, WA / Booths: 70 / Attendance: 6,000 / Weapons: must be peace-tied / Participant camping on-site; campgrounds and hotels nearby.

Northwoods Renaissance Festival (WI)

September 8 - 11, 2016, 10 a.m - 4:00 p.m
Admission: $20 / Conact: Don Sidlowski, Tommy O's Playhouse, PO Box 99, Three Lakes, WI 54562, email:, web: / Site: 5611 Hwy 51 S, Hazelhurst, WI 54531 / Booths: 30 / Attendance: 2,500 / Weapons: must be sheathed and peace-tied / camping, ATM, shower and privies available 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.

second annual Tommy O’s Northwoods Renaissance Festival (WI)
on the grounds of Tommy O’s Playhouse
September 8th–11th, 2016
Gates open 10 am, close 4 pm
·      five performance stages
·      queen’s live chess match
·      Tea with the queen
·      torture museum    
·      Music
·      Combat demonstrations
·      living history encampment
·      birds of prey     
·      dragon
·      olde world crafts & wares
·      shakespeare      
·      Magic
·      beer & cocktail tavern
·      giant turkey legs
·      ...Plus a whole lot more!
Welcome to Great Woods of Cumberland County, England. The year is 1501 and Henry VII is still in power. We are moving out of the darkness of the Middle Ages and into rebirth (or “Renaissance”). This is a fantastical time of innovation, merriment and exploration of new continents.
Our fair Queen has invited the entire county for a festival to celebrate Her Royal birthday. She will entice you with a chess match where you are the game piece and the winner shall receive her personal token; those of a lower class may learn the proper etiquette for being in her presence and later enjoy tea with Her Majesty.
You may spot a lost dragon in the Woods or a festive bagpiper marching along a path towards the lively dancing Deborah. Visit the Village Encampment and behold A Life Medieval, learn blacksmithing, or stoke the fires of the cooking pit.
Be ready to help judge the combat as the Villagers and Guardsmen test their abilities... but beware thieves and undesirables!
Wear your best finery and you may win our costume contest. Enjoy a day of feasting, frivolity, games, and wondrous handmade crafts and wares. There is fun for every memer of the family.

Let the merriment begin! Huzzah!

Admission : Adult (18+) $20 ea; Teen (13-17)  $10 ea; Kids (under 13) $5 ea

Entertainment Value Pack: $15 for $25 in entertainment credits

Located at Tommy O’s Playhouse grounds, 5611 Hwy 51 S, Hazelhurst, WI
10 miles south of Minocqua on Hwy 51
20 miles west of Rhinelander, K to Hwy 51

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