As autumn rounds the corner, and Halloween is nearing, Renaissance Faire season is in full swing. Dedicated to recreating historical times with traditional food, drink, costumes, and entertainment, Renaissance Faires are a fun place for the entire family to enjoy. With new and well-established faires thrown from coast to coast, these seasonal festivities are no longer reserved for history buffs and young children.
Although most faires follow a similar traditional format — choosing a specific time frame during the Renaissance, booking culturally relevant entertainment, and serving bowlfuls of hearty stews with a side of turkey legs — there can be significant differences between them, from themes to faire eats. Each year in October, Wisconsin’s Chippewa Valley Renaissance Festival abandons tradition and turns into a haunted celebration, complete with a graveyard, haunted hayride, and spooks. Then, the Winslowshire Renaissance Festival in Massachusetts, has a unique charity angle with a portion of its proceeds benefitting abandoned animals.
The Sherwood Forest Faire, where Robin Hood can be found practicing his archery and fairies are seen wandering through the enchanted forest, is a classic example of a traditional Renaissance Faire. Learn Renaissance lingo over authentic faire fare like turkey legs, steak-on-a-stake, and mugs full of ale. For a taste of the Renaissance’s adventurous side, the Texas Renaissance Festival serves dragon meat on a stick, the Prince’s honey herb wine, and Blackbeard’s Stash (aka blackberry cobbler).
So grab your fairy wings and bring a hearty appetite. America’s Renaissance faires are serving some traditional eats and time-honored tournaments. Dance to roaming minstrels, enjoy theatrical jousts, and celebrate the changing of the seasons at faires across the country.