When I concluded my last post on the Renaissance Festival, I ended it with “Until next year!” Then of course we all know what happened and that next year wasn’t until this year. A lot has happened since the last time I went to a Renaissance Festival! Many of those things have been documented on this blog, and so my loyal reader(s) you are already familiar with the fact that I started dating my super amazing girlfriend! My dad came to town just to go to the Renaissance Festival opening weekend (the weekend before this has been posted) and we decided to go along as well, which was extra exciting for me and I assume for her because this is the first time my super amazing girlfriend had ever been to a Renaissance Festival!
The photo at the top was the usual opening ceremony of the Renn Fest where the king comes out and greets everyone and welcomes them into Revel Grove. We, however, had showed up 45 minutes early (this is my fault), so the first thing that greeted us at the Renn Fest was a vaccination site, which I view as a good thing but which I was surprised by. I have no doubt there are people who would use this opportunity to get vaccinated, but how many people is that? I don’t know if they administered any vaccines but I don’t think the line could have been very long at any point in the day.
As we waited out the 45 minutes in front of the gate, I took the opportunity to point out some of the archetypical people that show up to Renaissance Festivals. Since I was actively looking for people to point out (pirates, princesses, people not in costumes, people in scifi outfits, etc) this was the first time I think I really noticed the wide range of people that show up to this event. Lemme tell ya, it really is a wide range. I saw people in Trump shirts and I saw gay ravagers walking around with dudes in flip flops. There is a place for everyone at the Renn Fest because drinking out of goblets while wearing silly outfits knows no boundaries.
Before arriving, I had tried to explain the Renaissance Festival to my super amazing girlfriend. Her major reference for Renn Fests was Gilmore Girls, and my various attempts to explain I don’t think helped at all. She was very familiar with craft fairs, and I mentioned all the shops and crafts, but a Renn Fest isn’t exactly a craft fair. She is also familiar with Shakespeare festivals, and I tried to sell the event by pointing out that they often do Shakespeare. I don’t think, however, that I saw excitement in her eyes until she looked at the Renn Fest website and discovered that they sold mac n’ cheese on a stick.
We eventually got that mac n’ cheese, but first we took what dad dubbed “the grand tour,” which is really just a walk around the perimeter. I think the true nature of the Renaissance Festival became clear when we passed by a game booth where you threw very cute rats into hanging buckets. We both played, I got a rat in a bucket, and like the excellent boyfriend I am I won my super amazing girlfriend a prize which she proudly wore the rest of the day. Also as part of the grand tour she bought a flower crown, and I was immensely pleased when she told me it made her feel pretty!
It was the afternoon before we really settled into to watch any of the entertainment at the Renaissance Festival. One of the highlights was watching the Company of Women present a scene from Henry VI, Part III. This was the Shakespeare that my super amazing girlfriend wanted to see, and it was great. At least I assume it was. After the scene I asked my super amazing girlfriend what had happened but she didn’t know either. We also managed to see a very abridged version of Macbeth which was very good!
Eventually we also came to the food! We in fact got the mac n’ cheese on a stick, and throughout the day we also got key lime pie on a stick, chocolate and peanut butter pie on a stick, a buffalo chicken calzone, fried cheese, jalapeno poppers, and a crab cake sandwich, and I am sure other things but I am already hungry writing down this list. It is truly a spectacular array of foods and I am only sad that we don’t have more stomachs.
I also want to mention here what my super amazing girlfriend dubbed her favorite show of the day, which was the Magical Poodles. The most impressive part of any Renaissance Festival show is how far these performers can stretch having one or two tricks. We saw a trio of jugglers who did a whole series of shows and you know what all they did was juggle. They were great though. Anyways our Poodle Lady friend, she was great. I have never trained poodles, so maybe she was at the top of her craft, but the tricks the dogs did were not very impressive. However, they were extremely cute and she was extremely earnest and it was very clear each dog had its own personality it 100% wanted to display as they wandered around the stage or demanded an additional treat before they would perform a trick. These dogs were divas, they knew it, and were twice as cute for it.
All in all it was an excellent day at the Renaissance Festival and I am super excited I got to show my super amazing girlfriend what it was all about. We ate foods and saw shows and got legitimately lost in a maze for a little bit but that gave us an opportunity to take some photos and just be cute together and it was great. I’ve been going to the thing for decades now and I am impressed that you can really find entertainment for all ages and all types as you wander around. We gotta make sure it isn’t another two years before we can go again.