One of our favorite activities each year is attending and cosplaying at the Pennsylvania Renaissance Fair hosted by Mount Hope Estate & Winery. We truly are a geek family who has an extreme love for cosplay, re-enactments, magic and mythical, sci-fi, and fantasy (see our Geeks & Fiends Blog for more cosplay), but most importantly, we have a love for historical education and the renaissance medieval era. So it was karma that the most beautiful day of the season fell on the day we went to the Pennsylvania Renaissance Fair.
This year my daughter and I went as The Princess & The Wench theme.
The annual season of the Pennsylvania Renaissance Fair at Mount Hope PA kicks off in August and continues every Saturday and Sunday, 11AM – 8PM until the end of October. Each weekend the Fair will showcase an exciting and unique theme that offers a different experience every time. There are themed entertainment, foods, participatory contests, beautiful medieval music, and activities in addition to the regularly scheduled events.
A Fine Entrance Indeed
At the entrance we were greeted by a crowd of both Nobles, Peasants, and Musicians singing songs of mirth and merry, all welcoming us to the beautiful Realm. Two of the Nobles greeted us most delightfully by directing us to the castle gates while the peasants stopped to beg for alms and even a bit of mead. Gypsies, Vikings, Celtics, and bands of Knights marched and gathered around to sing and greet the crowd with entertainment, mead, and a bit of chatter. It was, indeed, the most joyous celebration to be welcomed to.
Suddenly the sounds of trumpets filled the air and the town crier stepped forth upon the Castle edge to make his announcement of the King and Queens arrival. Now because this day was in honor of real Heroes of the Realm, our brave King and his lovely Queen were also followed by men and women in uniform. They valiantly marched behind the Royal family with proud smiles to have such a great honor bestowed upon them. We usually make it a goal to attend during the Heroes of the Realm celebration that focuses on our military, law enforcement, and emergency teams. Obviously we are even more inspired during this celebration since we are, in fact, retired military.
As we entered the Castle, before us laid a village of amazing beauty and merry people. Craftsmen and shopkeepers excitedly shared their goods with the Nobles and Peasants alike as the announcements of the town criers and songs of the minstrels filled the air with so much enthusiasm that you couldn’t help but join in on the singing and dancing. Then we made our way down the alley side and wandered into an area of amazing entertainment. Stage acts, music, games, and even friendly rounds of Swordplay entertained the eyes and ears of all who dared pass through such merry festivities.
Dueleth Thy Kin
Rob and Alex decided to reconcile their brotherhood differences through a bit of sword dueling. They donned their swashbuckling swords and gowns of thick leather before bowing to each other and then positioning their place on the battlefield.
Once upon a time … two brothers fought long …
Some of the greatest discoveries during my travels through the Realm, were the talents of all the craftsmen, from Blacksmithing to Tailoring, these handmade items were a joy to watch being spun and twisted and crafted to pure excellence. All the shopkeepers were proud to share their work and eager to sell their goods. It was a brilliant display of creativity at its best.
And during one of my break moments, I was able to chat with a gorgeous Human Pirate and his lovely Elvish wife. They were so completely stunning to me, it was inevitable that I took them home with me, even if but only in photograph.
Towards the end of the day, the Royal Family held a Live Chess Match that included duels from different sides of the realms and their selected Heroes. Some heroes were smaller hobbits (younger children) selected by the Majesty herself in order to help defend the realm. The live chess match was a glorious battle between Celts, Vikings, Spaniards, and the Royal Knights. It was, indeed, a great battle filled with humor, acrobatics, and sword fighting at its best.
Alas the day turned to dark and we all hobbled home, some drunken in despair and others weary from a day of good cheer. For myself and my family, t’was a good day indeed. If you are ever in the area during the 13 weeks of merry celebration, come join us at The Pennsylvania Renaissance Faire and let’s enjoy the honey mead together!