Goode Times At Ye Olde Festivale

Hear ye, hear ye! Lordes and Ladies, give heede to yon announcemente of a festivale! 'Twill be founde in the countrye hamlete of Bonnere Springse in the province of Kansase! I have beene, and 'twould be unfaire of me to not bequeathe mine accounte of the strange happeningse thereine.

Okay, I'm not going to keep up the old-timey language or adding "e" on the end of every other word for this whole post. But there was a fair, it was in Bonner Springs, and it was a lot of fun (the fair, not Kansas- Kansas sucks).

After an absence of some years, I joined Elise, Beckie, Sarah and Max for a day at the Kansas City Renaissance Festival. A fond annual tradition of days past, circumstances had kept us from the medieval festivities. But no more- we returned and had a great time.

I'd like to say that the theme of the day was jousts, turkey legs and wenches. But it wasn't. No, the theme of the day was Max, tucked into a belly bag, strapped around Beckie's neck and being carried around like the spoiled king he claims to be:

At least every five minutes, someone would come up and, sometimes asking permission and sometimes not, start petting Max. Seriously, if we would have charged a nickle each time, we would have made our ticket prices back ten-fold. It was fun (read:a little ridiculous).

But I digress. Our first stop was my favorite stop, one I insist on making every single time I go, and which I have been known to make more than once in a day. No, not the "royal privies", though technically that was our first stop once inside the fair.

Dr. H. Dumpe, L.B.P.- Master Fire Eater, was the first show of the day. Seriously, I watch this gig every time I'm at the festival, and have even done so twice in one day. His jokes haven't changed too much over the last 15 years, but he still gets everyone laughing, especially when he teases people walking by:

Through a series of demonstrations, Dr. Dumpe (a.k.a. entertainer Rod Sipe) shows the crowd that he actually does eat fire instead of blowing it out (as evidenced by the following video- if you look carefully, you can see flames burning on his tongue for a few seconds):

At one point, he and his assistant demonstrated their immunity to glass, shown by this kid standing on Dr. Dumpe's face pressed into shards of glass:

It really is a great show, always worth the thirty minutes on hard wooden benches or hay bales (below is the "grand" finale).

After that, we meandered in and out of shops, around the town taking in the local color and weird costumes. The festival really does a great job of decorating, designing and planning to make it feel all medieval-ish and faire-y.

At 1:00, we made our way to the tournament grounds for the joust, which this time was between four knights- two "good" guys and two "bad" guys. This guy was our section's champion, Sir Whatshisface from Someplaceshire:

The joust, despite its obvious choreography and carefully scripted outcomes, is always a treat, if nothing because humans have always been entertained by seeing people fall off of stuff like horses.

I wish I had taken pictures of the luscious food we ate, somehow managing to hide the quantity of said food that we ate. We had a turkey leg, cinnamon-coated almonds, steak sandwiches, funnel cakes, fish and chips, a monster cupcake with fluffy frosting and M&M's for sprinkles (Apu, you were wrong!!)...oh, it was all fantastic. And somehow we managed to save room for luscious pizza from Mazzio's in Sedalia, where we met Tamara after the fair.

I just have to say, again about the costumes, they were magnificent. I don't know who makes them, or if all of them are planned- I wonder sometimes if the organizers say something to the effect of "just wear something rennaisance-y and cool-looking." Take this guy below, bedecked as the Phantom from a scene of "Phantom of the Opera": who knows if he is a registered member of the festival, he just looked really awesome- I told him he had the best costume at the festival, and I meant it:

So it was a Saturday full of good times- always worth the trip to the other side of Kansas City, and even worth the nightmare of trying to navigate the stupid Kansas road system.


Peeser said…
Yeah, I'll be honest- I think your account of the day was far more entertaining than mine (of course, I blame that on the illness that coursed through my body as I blogged). You have some great pics- I'm really glad you got a shot of the Phantom (he really did have an amazing costume...).

Thanks for coming and sharing a spectacular day with me reliving an old-ish family tradition. We may have to try this again next year...
Julina said…
I don't get what's so hard about Kansas road systems ('course, maybe it was the 4+ years of navigating it that gives me a leg up...)

Glad you had fun, though :-) Maybe next year, I'll make it, too

(though the Feast of the Hunter's Moon in Lafayette was pretty cool, too - and it's at least 5 years older, too - and it's located where the events being depicted *actually* happened, too... if it wasn't on Conference weekend nearly every year, I'd vote on it becoming a family tradition, as well... :-)

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