I don’t remember ever going to a Medieval or Renaissance Festival growing up. If I did I may have gone with school. What I do remember is that I loved that era alot. I remember in 6th grade one of my teachers having us get our parents sign a permission slip to watch First Knight. A memorable movie for sure. I have recently started watching the show Merlin and it has rekindled my love for the Medieval/Renaissance era.
One day I was looking up events on FB when I came across the Alabama Medieval Fantasy Festival that my twin (not really my twin but maybe) was interested in. Since our move to Alabama I have been looking for fun things to do. Driving a couple of hours or even 20 minutes is nothing for us after living in DC. Anyways, I got super excited and reminded George how much we have loved going in the past. He agreed that we should go and I started making plans.
It only made since to me that since Keri had shared the information that we should go on this adventure together. She agreed to drive down from Birmingham with her boys to meet us there. We settled on the Friday not only to beat the crowds but to take advantage of the student/teacher discount.
We met Keri and her boys plus they brought along a friend,at the gate. Keri even went as far as to photo bomb the picture I had George take of me and the kids. It was the best photo bomb in the history of photo bombing.We watched a joust, a Raptor birds demonstration, a glass vase be made and chatted with a blacksmith all before lunch. I would have to say the kewlest part of the jousting was the huge Clydesdale. They even had it to where you could ride it if you wanted to. The Raptor demonstration was really neat because the guy showed us several different birds and they flew pretty close. Two different birds flew into a tree above my head while the kids had birds fly over there heads. The glass blower had alot of very beautiful pumpkins. I was so worried on of the kids would break one. The blacksmith had Bubbles try her hand at banging on some metal.
Six flagging it? Keri-“Growing up we would get to go to Six Flags but my parents couldn’t afford for us to eat inside so that’s what we would do.Then we came up with the term.” So we Six Flagged it for lunch and sat in the shade of our big van in the parking lot. We had sandwiches, fruit, carrot sticks, and graham crackers. It was alot warmer than it had been in 5 days or so and Pooh got a little sick. Either he ate too fast or got too hot.
The other kids were done eating lunch so Pooh stayed with Dad in the Air Conditioned van while we went to check out more of the shops. The shops had all sorts of kewl stuff. The boys all got swords. Bubbles picked out a beautiful fan. Jem picked out a long pair of very obvious Oh I love Harry Potter socks. Pippi, Keri, and I all picked out bell dancer hip scarves. George picked out soap goat soup and I bought him some jam.
After our shopping we were looking for a play about Arthur but found Bagpipes instead. We sat and listened for a little while before deciding we should keep trying to find the other show. We somehow split up and had very differing experiences. I took the older four to what seemed like a haphazard display. The man talked about armor, building houses and other things. I thought the kids would get bored but I think they could have spent hours talking to the man dressed in true garb. The rest of the group watched a guy do magic tricks. The kids really seemed to have enjoyed it.
The piece ala resistance was the junior knighting ceremony. The kids went up in groups of three to be knighted by the king of the festival. This was a very cute and kewl ceremony. The girls were even able to participate. They were more excited about doing it after hearing that one of their favorite teachers from the Harry Potter series had been knighted. The girls went last and then George was ready to head home. We said goodbye to Keri, her boys, and their friend. It was a very fun and educational day.
We were able to be apart of Alabama Medieval Fantasy Festivals 1st Student Day as well as 2nd year to exist. I knew it was going to be smaller than ones we have gone to in the past but I was still just as excited. I was also very happy to find on the website on the school page a Classroom guide which includes worksheets, history, and project ideas. We did a few of the worksheets and discussed things a week before our field trip. The kids each chose a project to do for a prize. The projects are due Friday so I will be sharing the final products next week.