We visit the (Maryland Rennaissance Festival


(note from 2016: The Picture links are long dead, my apologies)

Babes in Medieval World!!

 

 

More precisely, Tudor-Stuart World… Sunday was a milestone. My first visit to the Maryland Renaissance Faire since truly bygone days when I, me, Mister Nizz, once donned a costume and playacted the medieval thing for vicarious enjoyment of strangers. Drey, being the Rennie-Come-Lately that she is, had already gone up to stay with her pal Linda who lives close to the Faire’s location. She called me and left dire warning that I should be on the rode early.

Did I heed her sensible warning?

Hell no!

That was my first mistake. According to the Faire Website’s equally reasonable
DIRECTIONS PAGE, getting there looked like a snap. Route 50 to Route 3, to Route 450, to Crownsville Road. What could be simpler? What the page doesn’t tell you is that 450 is a two lane road winding up down and around a very dense wooded area where it is almost impossible to get up a head of steam. Furthermore, add, oh, say, 10,000 automobiles to this stretch of road and you get your own unique version of Slow Moving Hell.

GET USED TO THIS SIGHT...

See that minivan up ahead? I would feel a strange kinship with its driver, whom I never met. I would be behind this van for (no fooling, really!) TWO HOURS!!! So, we waited in the jam. And waited. And waited. And waited. (click on thumbnails to see fullsized images)

It only got embarrassing when we realized people WALKING ON THE SIDE OF THE ROAD were actually going to get there before we were.
Pedestrians were faster than we were

After (no fooling really) an HOUR AND A HALF OF THIS.. I was more than willing to have my daughter Annie gnaw my veins open for that sweet release of death.
Just KILL ME NOW!

Cooler heads prevailed, as Anne sensibly pointed out (between bites) that she
didn’t have a license yet. Finally, just when you think you’ve seen your hundredth person in garb leaping out of their vehicles to urinate in the woods in a stealthy fashion….
Peeing in your garb in the woods can be problematic

….The vision was SUDDENLY upon us!! (Sing hosannas)
Oh Sweet Mother.. a left turn at last!

Yeah, BABY! It only took almost two hours to get here. That’s up six miles of
road, btw.

Anne felt transfixed by the deep solemnity of the moment and desired to testify.
Well, I’m an open minded guy..
PRAISE BE!!!

Garrett, on the other hand, we less enthused. Sleeeeep, little redhead... sleeeeep

After being directed to park in the back forty (and literally, this WAS the back forty– I heard they shut the gates on Sunday because the parking lot got full up), we trudged for what seems like forever to get into the faire. Drey had tickets for us.. Huzzzah! I essayed, feebly! The first thing you notice about the Ren Faire is people. People in funny outfits. Tourists, milling about. In vast numbers.

Lots and lots of people. Happy Throngs at the RenFest

And more people… More happy throngs

There are lots of goods for sale at the Faire… more pottery than you could shake a stick at, and even more leather goods, and an assortment of costume shops and grog shops and Food places and beer gardens.

This vendor sold massages. Massages No happy endings, I checked.

Here we are milling about, waiting for the Green Man celebration to begin. This was fun and kind of crazy, and based upon a well known British Agricultural legend. Green Man Crowd

Bald dudes get ALL the chicks at Ren Faire. It’s scientific..Green Man Crowd

The Green Man celebrants were actually a pretty cool bunch. Here’s one with a walking Leonardo Da Vinci puppet. Green Man Crowd

And here’s the actual GREEN MEN, they were pretty nifty… Free Image Hosting at www.ImageShack.us

And another… I liked these guys.. they apparently have their own website. Green Man Crowd

I walked around a bit with Linda, then met up with Drey again.. I was hungry, but didn’t want to do the tourist thing and go buy a giant turkey leg. It’s been done to death. So I got me a pork chop on a stick. Dunno if hunger makes me think it, but there’s something about sizzling meat on a stick that just makes it taste great. Hey, waitaminute!! A Fortune Teller in a gypsy caravan, with a CAT???? Man, that’s something you don’t see every day!!
Who Would have Thunk it?

And the Green Men tromped on by again, threading around the entire Faire. Huzzah,
boys! WAAAAY COOOL outfits. Green Man Crowd

Gar and I both resolved.. we need to get us some Green Man suits!! Cooool!
Green Man Crowd

What attraction layeth ahead, Lords and Ladie? Mud Jumping? Mime? Turkey Legs? A Juggling Act? Nope. It was the seats of ease! Long lines.. learn to love ’em. Learn to gab with your neighbors.. it keeps your minds off bursting bladders.
Das PeepeeHaus

I visted the establishment of Steve, Linda’s boyfriend. He and some others had set up a “classical” magick shop, selling wands and ticks of all sorts. It looked like a blast. Garrett, who likes such things, was entranced. Myself, I laughed LOUD AND LONG when seeing this on the wall:
Jack Sparrow counter

The Captain Jack Sparrow costume motif was seen everywhere…. and sure enough, I bump into THIS GUY when I walk out the front door!
Wow!  Captain Jack Sparrow! What an original costume! He couldn’t figure out exactly why I was giggling like a schoolgirl whilst he was shamelessly mugging for the camera. Joke’s on YOU, Cap’n!!

It wouldn’t be “Faire” if we didn’t get THIS classical RenFaire photo op, so we did: Gar in the stocks

And then Gar got to shoot some (air pressure) cannons, which he digs…
Gar firing off ordinance

And thus endeth the day, with moderately lewd songs and mead, at the Pub Singalong..
The Pub Sing

The Pub Sing was something I liked quite a bit, as it involved bad jokes, singing, and booze. Gar fell asleep. Drey loved it. And thus, only a ONE hour drive homeward, with sleepy children in tow. I would deign to visit againe; but only if were up before the cock crows, sirrah! S’Truth!!!

On a follow up note, we would revisit the great Maryland Ren Faire the following weekend (arriving early enough to see everything, and have a pretty danged good time of it).

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