Child (ages 5-12) $15
Kids Under 5 FREE
The Original Renaissance Pleasure Faire
The Original Renaissance Pleasure Faire is an event worth seeing. Once a year, the Irwindale Dam is transformed into a fantastical medieval village filled with artisans and entertainment: jousting, juggling, costumes, and comedy mayhem. This is one of the few events that our family is sure to attend annually.
We’ve been to the faire a couple of times, so we were prepared: We arrived early with our map and itinerary clearly laid out so we knew which shows we wanted to hit and when. The boys had already been given their choices of paid entertainment (knife throwing, crossbows, fishing, ax throwing, bows arrows, dunk tank, etc…) and made their three choices.
Last year J did his best to make sure everyone had a miserable time, so we’d predetermined to splurged on a costume rental as soon as we got to the faire. It was like magic; J instantly felt like he was part of the festivities. For the first time at any event, J interacted with costumed guests, volunteered to go up on stage, and insisted on his picture taken. That was a huge surprise. (The next year I saved $20 by making his costume out of left-over fabric and a table runner at the dollar store (I am not a seamstress…but I figured it out)).
We saw fire jugglers, knife throwers, acrobats, magicians, and of course the joust. Various fairies were scattered around the faire, and J put his magic lessons to use by mystifying the fairies with a disappearing doubloon. K was just happy to do stuff. He tried the dunk tank, the sledge hammer, the maze, and both boys loved the merry go round…I think we paid for three rides and they screamed and laughed their heads off all three times.
Their activity of choice was crossbows, and Peter paid for the extra bolts so they got the full experience…and they weren’t disappointed. It’s exactly what they wanted to do.
My favorite this year was MooNiE the Magnif’Cent who brought an Eagle Scout onstage as his assistant. I was rolling in tears…I haven’t laughed that hard in a long, long time.
The Renaissance Fair is amazing; the things you see and experience are nowhere else. When was the last time you threw tomatoes at someone in the stocks? And I love the costumes; I love seeing human creativity and skill to take art in a completely unexpected direction.
There are various rides and carnival games inside, but they are hosted by individual vendors and cost extra. Bring cash to this event and set a budget or you’ll spend way more than anticipated.
April is cooler than May. Obviously. It does make a difference.
Not all costumes are modest. There’s going to be a lot of cleavage and the occasional ridiculous codpiece. Our kids are young enough that they don’t notice, but some of our friends with older kids might not consider such things family-friendly. Some comedy shows have adult humor, but they are clearly marked.