Hello Friends and Family,

Link to this year's index by clicking here.

Renaissance Festival, Part 1

Every year from February through March, the Renaissance Festival is held on the east edge of the Phoenix metro area. Unfortunately, highway 60 narrows and slows down so that getting there is a bit of a headache. "Are we there yet?" "How about now?" I'm sure those of you with kids know the routine.

This was the first year that I took Johnny (age 10). He was interested based on the videos and photos I showed him. Surprisingly, he did not seem all that interested in the people wearing period costumes.

The main streets of this seasonal town seemed much the same as I recall from my previous visit in 2008 — except that it has been expanded to accommodate the larger crowds as it grows a bit, year by year.

So many people in costume, engaged in playing games, singing, dancing, playing instruments, etc. Here the young chess master is giving his elder a lesson.

This fellow looked like an itinerant actor — wearing his mask and carrying everything he might need.

I don't recall this figure from my previous visit — although the aging of the wood at the bottom suggests that it has been here a while.

Oh but I do recall this guy. He walks around talking to the kids — who are amazed that a tree can walk and talk. If your kids are sufficiently entertained, you give them a few coins to place in his one of his gourds attached to the bottom of his lower outstretched limbs.

Now this was a surprise — characters from Star Wars! I did not know they were around during the Renaissance. However, then I recalled the opening crawl in all the Star Wars movies that begins, "A long time ago in a galaxy far, far away....". Okay, I guess they can stay.

And here a couple more Star Wars characters. Their costumes were well done.

There were a lot more of these types of costumes — appropriate for the period and engaged in activities such as dances of the day.

I'm not sure if this guy is from the Renaissance period but he was sure entertaining. He did all kinds of tricks with his whips — some looked really dangerous such as when he attacked a flower held by his pretty assistant (naturally) in her mouth. She survived unscathed.

He went on to do a trick where he put lighter fluid on a special whip, lit it then cracked it here and there with the flames jumping from the whip in spectacular fashion. I have never seen this trick before — even Johnny was impressed.

There were lots of activities for the kids — such as this one. Johnny wasn't interested in trying it.

Some of the performers were selling their CDs, etc. Fun to watch and listen.

To be continued...

Life is good.

B. David

P. S., All photos and text © B. David Cathell Photography, Inc. — www.bdavidcathell.com