Starting in October and ending just before Thanksgiving there is this wonderful schmorgusborg of sensory overload known as the Carolina Renaissance Festival. This is one of my favorite Autumn traditions. There are games, rides, and performances. People dressed as pirates, lords, ladies, knights, jesters, dancers, fairies, and more. And not just the vendors or performers. People actually come dressed up to this thing!
This year we took a friend with us. She’s originally from Maine, and had never been to the Ren Fest. Since we had taken this same friend to the Greensboro Summer Solstice celebration I was sure she had some idea of what it was going to be like. It was fantastic to have that additional adult with us. With three adults and two kids, this year I got to have some fun that didn’t involve chasing my kids the whole time. As a parent you know, one has to watch the kids so the other can do anything, but when you have two very different kids with different interests that don’t even match your own then someone isn’t having as much fun as the others. That someone is usually me. This year, I think we managed well.
Let me give a very big praising thank you to the bubble blowing mime. I don’t know who that girl was as she was a mime and therefore silent, but she held my 3 year old son’s attention longer than anyone or anything else ever.
I actually got to eat my fill of my own broccoli cheese bread bowl! That is a huge deal since last year it was all I had wanted, but I ended up getting barely three bites before my family, who had claimed not to be hungry moments before, descended upon me like a pack of hungry wolves. I was so full from my bread bowl that I also turned down my originally planned turkey leg as accompaniment. I did end up with a slice of the most decadent chocolate strawberry cake, though, while the others had funnel cake. Call me crazy, but chocolate cake versus funnel cake? Are you kidding me? No contest.
All in all it was a fabulous Saturday Family Fun Day with a friend. Next year I’m hoping to dress up myself and see how many others will do it too. I have patterns and a sewing machine. All I need is fabric. That makes me fairly renaissance-ish, right? Well, I can look the part, at least.
As we were leaving our friend said, “I never knew so many people were so comfortable wearing costumes after Halloween.” I guess the Ren Fest really is a little pocket of interesting people watching.
Have you been to a Renaissance Festival before? What’s your favorite part? Do you dress up?
*Photos: 1) Random shot of the Carolina Renaissance Festival. 2) The bubble blowing mime surrounded by giggling girls and my son totally mesmerized. 3) My daughter training to joust and become a kick-butt female knight.