2016 Renaissance Festival Opening Day
We have been such fans of the Phoenix Renaissance Festival over the years. We have never been to one on opening weekend, but we decided this year we would give it a whirl.
The temperature was a nice 60 or so when we got there, with a high of 73 expected. It seemed to tempting to pass up!
We arrived a bit early, and we were greeted with the masses ready to flood into the festival grounds. The crowd was festive and fun!
Our little princess was grumpy and a Fair magician put a smile on her face as we waited. It was a nice thing, as a grumpy toddler is never a fun thing. She was in a much better mood and we were ready.
I am pretty sure we never saw these guys in the past, and they were hilarious. Hanging over the crowds as we piled into the grounds.
These two were new, and we had a hardy laugh about this sign. Everyone laughed as they filed by. This is one of the things we really love about going to the Renaissance Festival- something new and fun around each corner. A new show, a new shop or just a funny person with a sign.
We checked out the schedule and tried to plan a few things we wanted to see. We always miss something, because there is so much to see- one day is never enough to see it all. Another trip is definitely on our agenda this year.
These are the washing wenches and we have not made it over to see them yet. We did see them walking around at the jousting, and they are hilarious. We need to make them a priority next visit.
This is our grumpy princess in her royal carriage. She gets a lot of attention and she loves it. As a mom of a little person, I cannot imaging going to the faire without this covered wagon. She is comfy and in the shade. It gives us a place to keep a bottle of water and a picnic blanket for her. She also has a golden princess pillow to lounge on so she doesn't get a sore bottom from the hard wagon. We have it set up so we can pull more fabric over one side so the sun doesn't get on her in the afternoon.
She can sit or lay down, and in the afternoon I thought she was going to fall asleep in there!
We made a point to visit the Tortuga Twins this year. We haven't seen them before, so we sat a spell to watch. The man of the house was pretty entertained by their show, but the toddler was not, so we had to move along. It was early in the day and she was ready to run and play.. not a toddler show really. But something to see without them.
Sitting and eating a turkey leg... we love watching the people go by. It is one of the most entertaining things to do in my opinion. Even the little person likes this part. Of course, she loves the turkey leg, so there is that..
We each have our own copper mugs and I just pulled off turkey and put it in her cup to let it cool. Those legs were super hot this year and I really had to pace myself..lol
My little princess was welcomed to the Queen's court this year. We had her sit on the pillowed bench and chat about this or that for a spell. She was a little nervous being away from mom and dad, but she was taken by hand by one of the ladies and seemed happy to sit there with them. At the end, the lady gifted her with a sweet little purple ring that she she had on the rest of the day. She was very pleased with it. I think she will keep it forever.. lol
It was scheduled as a story time, and that may have been what they were chatting about- but I couldn't hear and the toddler wasn't saying.. so the secret is with them. She was happy and that is what counts!
Next up was the mermaid show. This was new this year and it was pretty awesome. We filed through the line quickly and my daughter was pretty entranced with the whole thing.
This mermaid talked to us!
Our little was old enough to go on rides this year, so I got on this one with her. Remind me that I am prone to nausea on spinning rides for next year.. HA! She squealed with delight as we went around and around and around.. we had a car that had a rope to pull- the rope moved a wing that made it look like we were in a flying car. And I guess we were!.
The workers run to get us started up and then we spin until we wind down. No electricity here, so it is people powered. Kind of amazing really, and fun! It was $3 for each of us, and I think it was money well spent.
We always make it a priority to see the belly dancers each year. Firstly, there is raspberry mead, and secondly- well the man of the house enjoys the dancing. Yea, that is it... to be honest- the toddler really liked it too. We were able to sit through their entire performance and she was mesmerized. I was pleased too- sitting in the nice shade, with a cool mead seemed exactly the ticket here.
The jousting arena is next to the belly dancers, and we made our way in. We always are sure to arrive early and sit on our favorite corner. We have the wagon, so we like to keep it close, being decorated and full of our stuff.. people do leave theirs unattended, and I don't think there are issues, but I like mine near by.
We sit on the edge, and get a little shade there. I also had a parasol this year, and the man of the house ended up using this as the afternoon sun was a little much on his legs. We are pasty white skinned folks, and even though we live in Phoenix, the sun is not our friend!
The jousting is a riot, and not to be missed. We have had the winner for the second year in a row.. so nice sitting on the winning side! Go green!
Another "carousel" go round.. we didn't ride this one, will save it for the next visit.
Lots of people are dressed up, and lots are not.. but they are fun to watch either way. Every year I make mental notes on the next year's costuming and what I want to add or change. There are many choices of shops to but anything you need though. Last year the man of the house bought a sword and belt.
I saved my souvenir cash for a fantastic bottle of Patchouli-Amber fragrance oil. It was a nice deal from Global Scent Company. I smell really great- even the next morning, I can smell my oil on my wrists. It really lasts!
We wear our own costumes and bring our own wagon, but you can rent all those things here- at the beginning of the faire.. no reason to be boring.
We ended up having a full day- 10-4:30. This is the longest we have spent at the Faire, and I have to say, I still wanted more. We didn't see the petting zoo and a few other places.. but we had a nice pace this year- resting in the grass a lot and enjoying the picnic blanket we brought. Of course you can lay in the grass, but the toddler likes the novelty of the blanket and it encouraged her to rest.. letting us stay longer.
I really do think another trip will be in order for us. We had such a great time and it is a great family day for us.
I was happy to receive tickets to the faire in exchange for promotional activities and this blog post. I will be honest- we would go anyway, but the tickets certainly allow us for a more exciting day, as we can spend a little more:)
Thanks so much for another great memory.. perhaps we will see you there?
The renaissance festival runs until the end of March.. plenty of time to visit again!