After our trip to Edaville in June, my family was thrilled to be able to return to Carver, Massachusetts to attend King Richard's Faire during the month of September. My husband had great memories of attending this Renaissance faire as a child, but the rest of us have never been. We were looking forward to creating some fun memories for our own children. Not only have I never attended King Richard's Faire, I had never attended any Renaissance faire before, so I was not quite sure what to expect. These were my first impressions . . .
It was the second day of the faire. We did not attend on opening day because it is usually free admission for Carver residents, so we thought it might be too crowded. The faire was busy, but not overly crowded. We were happy that we never had to wait behind more than one or two people for rides, games, purchases in the artisan shops, and even to purchase food. We were also impressed at how hospitable and jovial everyone was who worked at the faire and pretty much every person seemed to be having fun at their jobs. We were also happy to find that, although everyone was in character, it never felt awkward to ask questions or to speak to anyone.
We arrived at the faire when it opened at 10:30am and left around 5:30pm. That was almost open to close and we still were not able to see and do everything. The children only went on one ride. There were shows that we were not able to get to, like the Storyteller's. There were tons of artisan shops that we did not have time to visit. If we have a chance to go back before the faire ends on October 21st, we might just do that. This time, we will know to plan out what we want to do in advance based on the show schedule.
Below you will find photos of my family's favorite parts of King Richard's Faire. We actually took over 460 photos that day. This is just a small sampling. You can view all my favorite photos from the event on the 3 Garnets & 2 Sapphires Facebook page.
(Click any photo to enlarge)
My husband just had to order one of King Richard's Faire's famed King's turkey legs. It was so enormous that he could not finish it, even with a little help from the rest of the family. His favorite part of the fair was the exceptional and extremely large yard of ale (a.k.a. Killian's Red) he enjoyed during the jousting event.
Needless to say, our 5-1/2 year old daughter thoroughly enjoyed the crown and wand shopping, but her favorite part of the faire was watching the female knight win the jousting event.
Hours later, we ran into the female knight walking about town. Our daughter was thrilled to meet her and was even more so when the knight kindly agreed to have her photo taken with the children.
One of the first things we saw when we entered the faire was the gift shop that sells wooden long and short swords, as well as small and large shields. Our 5-1/2 year old son did not stop thinking about those swords and shields the whole day. He was thrilled when he and his big brother were allowed to choose a short sword and a large shield as souvenirs.
Our son was even more thrilled when this young man dressed as a dungeon guard agreed to take a photo with him. I'm not even sure if he worked at the faire or if he was a guest, but he just made our son's day.
Our 8-1/2 year old son's favorite part of the faire was the amazing liger in the King's Royal Zoo, which is a lion/tiger mix. You can see from the photos how impressive the liger is in size and how it has the majestic presence of a lion. The show was not only entertaining, but it spread awareness about the work done by T.I.G.E.R.S. (The Institute of Greatly Endangered and Rare Species) and about what average people like us can do to help.
I think my favorite part of the faire was the atmosphere. There were so many special touches to make the experience authentic to the guests. The tall trees remind you of Sherwood Forest. The architecture really makes you feel like you've stepped into medieval times. It was also fun seeing all the costumes worn by both the staff and the guests. The next time we visit, we will most definitely have the children dress up.
Another thing I enjoyed immensely was the endless variety of artisan shops where everything is handcrafted. Not only were the shopkeepers pleasant to talk to, they were also full of knowledge about the craft and the history behind it. There were so many things I wanted to buy. Maybe on our next visit I'll be coming home with a hand carved staff or a piece chainmail jewelry or that sheepskin scarf I was eyeing with the owl embroidered on it . . .
For more information about King Richard's Faire, visit KingRichardsFaire.net, as well as King Richard's Faire on Facebook and Twitter.
Thank you to King Richard's Faire for providing press passes to my family in order to facilitate this review.