Faire…Yes the New York Renaissance Faire has started. August 6th is the first Saturday, opening day, of New York’s annual representation of 16th century Elizabethan England. The town of Tuxedo, NY (Sterling Forest) has played host to the New York Renaissance Faire for 39 seasons. George and I have gone for most of the last ten.
Every year we see something we haven’t seen before and plenty of the things that keep us coming back. Honestly, there are nooks and crannies throughout the Shire that hold some of the most interesting artistry and characters of the faire. If you rush and don’t look closely you can miss something. The artisan shops are decorated in theme around the items they sell. The vendors speak as though they are back in the 16th century. The entertainers captivate and we’re especially fond of the performers that make us laugh like Ded Bob and Hey Nunnie Nunnie.
Every year there’s breasts…many, more and lots of breasts. The costumes on both the actors and the attendees are better each year but one thing (or two) is clear, the ladies pretty much build the girls up to be on a shelf. The hats above the breasts are pretty spectacular if you can draw your eyes away. Attendees are dressed so well that sometimes I can’t tell the difference between the visitors and the cast. Don’t misunderstand, you DON’T have to wear a costume and sadly… we’ve never done it. Honestly, it’s been too damn hot for me…therefore not worth nagging George.
There are men in tights and men in kilts and traveling minstrels. There is dancing around the maypole, belly dancers dancing around the Sherwood Shire and there is a singing gravedigger. There are jugglers, fortune tellers and I’ve met Robin Hood when he was not around his merry band of outlaws. George and I have laughed at the Washing Well Wenches and shopped for some of the most unique pirate accessories. We’re sure that we’ve stood next to Jack Sparrow at The Blue Boar Inn. We’ve eaten the turkey drumsticks and blushed at the vendors selling the large pickles. George and I shared some mead, kissed on the kissing bridge (walked through the front gates and straight back to the flushing privies which is a REALLY good idea))
2016 has more changes than prior years. The new Roselawn Tournament Field which now has VIP seating. I saw on the NY Ren Faire Facebook page that the first day the first 300 guests who went to the information booth would be free. To get out of the sun (or rain since the Faire is open rain or shine) the seats are so worth it!(This seating will be available for $10 after the first weekend and it is well worth it) We had a great view of the inaugural joust or the “First Lance Ceremony”. Heroes were cheered and villains were cursed. Fun was had by all.
The Queen’s court is in the Sherwood Shire every Saturday and Sunday (and Labor Day, Monday) each summer for about 8-9 weekends, check the website. Most weekends have a theme such as pirate weekend, kids weekend, Celtic weekend and romance weekend. It’s a fun way to spend a day in the Hudson Valley.