On Sunday we traveled back in time as we went to the Renaissance Festival in Waynesville, Ohio. It was Highlander day so everyone had their kilts on, there was Irish music, and all kinds of activities going on that had to do with Ireland in days gone by.
Having never been to a Renaissance Festival I was not sure what to expect. I was told you park in a field and walk around the different exhibits and listen to music. So I expected a field with tents set up, much like a flea market. Well, much to my surprise it was nothing like that. Yes, we parked in a large parking lot made up of grass, but that is where the description ended. As we walked through the gates, which resembled the entrance of a castle, it becomes a town. There are buildings on both sides of the entrance with a large grassy area, where trees provide shade for the weary, running down the center. The artisans who have set up shop there are very talented you soon learn. There are glass blowers making tiny glass dragons, butterflies and other animals, woodworkers, and so much more. Each shop has different items on display, and some shop owners stand in front of their wares and lure you in with their native dialect from their country in the highlands or Europe.
Sunday was a beautiful 68-degree day with a slight breeze, and the sun was shining down on all the people who came to the festival dressed for the theme. They showed up as Irish lasses, elves resembling those in The Lord of the Rings, hobbits, and various other characters. There were vendors selling large pickles from a push cart and a sweet lady dressed as an Irish girl selling cookies from her tray. Everyone working was dressed in a costume which made your walk through the grounds an experience.
As we crossed over the bridge, we found games for the young at heart, and there were pony and camel rides for little ones and adults. The rides and games were only $5, so affordable to create a memory for the children with you.
There are park benches all over the grounds so you can sit and watch the people go by or listen to the music at one of the shows. There are shows scattered all over the grounds, and most are what I would call “Irish” comedy. There is an Insults game where you can throw tomatoes at the young man with his head and hands through the wall. You stand behind the stand and hurl tomatoes at him as he hurls insults back at you. It was a great show to watch as it was more entertaining than a game. He not only picked on the person throwing tomatoes at him but those in the audience as well. The little ones were not spared as he asked the front man to bring them closer, so they had a better chance of hitting him with the tomatoes. I stood there for awhile, and no one was even close to hitting him. The pitches went far and wide, and it made you think the insult he was throwing out was affecting the pitcher’s aim.
Be sure to take your best walking shoes because the Renaissance Festival is 30 acres in size. We walked for 4 hours, and I think we saw everything, that includes sitting down for a few shows. The food honestly is a little pricey, but it adds to the experience as you walk around with a whole turkey leg to munch on, a bag of kettle corn, a large dill pickle or many other items that fit the theme of the fair. The kettle corn vendor was by the jousting arena and it made for a great snack as you watched the knights coming at each other with long jousting poles, with a horse going 22 miles an hour. You could hear as the pole hit the armor the knight was wearing. Turkey legs? They are everywhere so you can find one easily. Seemed to be the item people ate to enhance the experience. 🙂
Would I recommend taking the family to the Renaissance Festival? Yes, I would. It was a great day with the family and I could have had no greater joy than to put my grandson on the pony and see the smile on his face.
Lá maith agat