I'm an old "Faire Junkie" from my days in California, when I went to the beloved Renaissance Pleasure Faire in Black Point Forest, just a bit north of San Francisco. A friend and I drove up from the South Bay every Faire weekend for years. Somewhere around here I probably still have one of my "Fairever Cards" which is a quaint way of saying "season pass." I have fond memories of those days and miss it.
Since we've lived in Pennsylvania I've been aware of the Faire here. It's a bit of a drive, and expensive for a family, so we've never gone. One year we attended a small local faire, but... well, it was pitiful. I knew going into it that it wouldn't be anything like my Faire, but it didn't even come close to measuring up. Even my kids said "meh, don't need to go back."
So this year it's time for the big Faire. We're studying Medieval history (still) and it's just time. I need a Faire. You know what I mean?
Though I had always dressed up for the Faire, we weren't planning to this time around. Then, the kids got the the idea to make wooden swords to carry. And then my girl decided to try on the dress she wore to the Reformation celebration we used to go to. Well, she's grown a little since 2006 (!) but it got her thinking about dressing up. I dug out what's left of my old Faire outfit... and away we go.
Now the kids are sanding and painting wooden swords and figuring out how to make a sheath and how to "peace-tie" their weapons. We searched the fabric store for the best-looking, yet cheapest fake leather for sheaths. We found a few items at the thrift store. We're sewing capes and drawstring pouches and pulling buttons off an old shirt, to be replaced with lacing. My girl doesn't need a dress after all - she and her brother are outlaws, so pants tucked into boots will work just fine.
We haven't given our days over completely to Faire prep, but close. But there's still some regular academics going on. But did I mention that my math-fighting boy admitted (a bit grudgingly) that he found his geometry skills useful for measuring and marking the wood for his sword. Right now he is measuring, cutting, and sewing.
All my old (pre-digital) Faire photos are stashed in a box somewhere. I couldn't take the time to find some online to post without worrying about copyright. But I did find this video of the opening ceremony at my old Faire, featuring Sir Francis Drake himself. It's a bit long, unless you miss the Black Point Renaissance Pleasure Faire, as I do.