Arizona Renaissance Festival

Arizona Renaissance Festival

A couple of weekends ago, my friends and I set off for the adventure that is the Arizona Renaissance Festival. I’ve been a couple of times before and it’s always a fun local adventure. The Festival grounds here are permanent and the medieval amusement park is open every weekend from (generally) the first weekend in February to the last in March. Covering over 30+ acres with 13 stages, plenty of arts and craft “stores,” and it’s very own jousting tournament, the Festival definitely has something for everyone!

There are stages hosting comedy acts, singing, dancing, musical entertainment, acrobatics, falconry, etc. The characters do a great job staying in character and I am inevitably (despite all efforts to the contrary) pulled in to the drama that is the jousting tournament. (smile) The aroma of giant turkey legs abounds next to beer in chalices and other similar forms of refreshment. Should you be so inclined, you can also rent a costume – or buy one – and fit right in! It’s an anything-goes (as long as it’s family friendly in an old school Disney movie sort of way) atmosphere, which definitely makes for some entertaining people watching!

When I first drove past the Festival grounds, I was blown away that the “village” and jousting arena were permanent fixtures. Honestly, until I moved to Arizona I had never attended a Renaissance Faire – I’d only seen them on TV or in books. So I of course marked my calendar in eager anticipation to attend the next year, and I’ve been back at least every other year since that first experience. I love the atmosphere at the Festival – the slightly romantic, fantasy vibe you get from walking around a medieval village with knights in full armor carrying cell phones. (smile) And if you go with the right group of people – and keep the right sense of humor about it all – it’s a guaranteed good day in the desert.

A few recommendations:

  • It always seems like the first and last weekends are the busiest. Same goes for mid-day whenever you go.
  • Buy tickets ahead of time – online or at the local grocery (Fry’s Food) – to avoid ticket lines.
  • You can’t take in water, but you can take in an empty water bottle – there are “well water” fountains inside.
  • Sunscreen – take it and wear it!
  • Layers – it’s a funny time of year in the desert, so it never hurts to plan for everything.
  • On the clothing note, wear good shoes – it is in an open area in the middle of the desert.
  • Take photos, but remember to take in the atmosphere as well. I may only have a handful of photos, but I have tons of good memories. (smile)

Find more information here: http://www.royalfaires.com/arizona/

8 thoughts on “Arizona Renaissance Festival

  1. We attended our first Renaissance Festival last fall in Texas and it sounds very, very similar to the one in Arizona. I was so surprised too when I saw the quality of buildings on the site. I figured they would be barely more than tents and temporary structures but it is really well done. My friend participates in the cast and works in the shops every year and she has a ball. I can see why as it’s very lively and entertaining and we had a great time on our visit.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Apparently a lot of these guys go over to the faire in Scarborough, Texas. Was that the same one? It’s supposed to be huge! I’ve always thought it would be such fun to volunteer just to see how things work behind the scenes, but I’m not quite brave enough to dress up to play the part! I bet your friend does have a great time – I’m guessing there are quite a few colorful personalities πŸ™‚

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      • No, the one we went to is in a town called Todd Mission which is outside of Houston. I’m not sure where Scarborough is actually.
        Colorful personalities for sure πŸ™‚ I’m not brave enough to do it either. She keeps telling me I can borrow one of her dresses and join the fun but I haven’t taken her up on the offer yet.

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