This past Sunday I experienced a new (to me) part of fall in New England – King Richard’s Faire. This renaissance faire lasts for 6 weeks every fall and it’s quite the event. My siblings had been before and raved about it, so this year I decided to join them for a day of family fun. I always thought of it as a bit tacky but I never expected it to be as awesome as it is.
We set out for a day of medieval adventures, dressed appropriately for the occasion. The entertainment alone was quite impressive. There was the “big cats” show full of exotic felines from around the world, aerial acrobatics, lots of musical acts, and even jousting matches! Entertainers and visitors alike were all dressed for the occasion and it became clear that this is a thing people take very seriously. I saw pirates, bards, royalty, and fairies; kilts, corsets, crowns, and capes; bow and arrows, swords, staffs, and daggers. Although it is traditionally a renaissance faire, the amalgamation of anachronistic individuals made me feel truly lifted out of the 21st century into a world of wonder!
By far the most impressive aspect of the faire was the artisans that come to sell their handmade goods. I was expecting lots of chatchsky souvenirs, similar to what you might buy on a trip to Disney World that then live on a shelf collecting dust forever. Boy was I wrong! There were hand carved instruments like drums and flutes, high quality leather clothing, all sorts of ceramics and pottery, and lots of swords and jewelry. Not to mention the shops that had every piece of costume attire imaginable. There were experts on family history that could trace the origins of family names and then make you cool framed combinations of your family crests. There was even a glass blower doing demonstrations of how everything is made (make sure you wear the special glasses while you watch!). Of course, everything came with a steep price tag, but I did win a kilt koozie for my master archery skills (the kilt maker challenged me to a duel and I came out victorious).
A good time was had by all but the greatest part was getting to experience the day with my brother and sister who both love this kind of thing. It was nice to be included in this part of their lives, and it reminded me of the importance of trying new things, especially with the people you love. I will definitely be attending the faire in the future!