Each year around this same time summer begins to wind down and I find myself wistfully and purposefully dragging my feet in defiance of fall. I love fall, don’t get me wrong—sweaters, crisp morning air, pumpkin picking, you know the whole shebang—I sincerely think it’s brilliant, but summer is really my season and I really hate to see it go. One of the things that we do at the end of summer as a bit of a last hurrah and a last ditch effort to cling to our summer is attend the New York Renaissance Faire in Tuxedo, NY. I’ve attended the faire since I was Liam’s age and we continue the family tradition with our children now. It’s especially lovely when we bring good friends. We’re bit of ren faire converters: we delight in bringing non faire folk into the fold. They drink the ale, they eat a giant turkey leg, they shout out “Huzzah!” a few times, then they see just how fun it is, and inevitably they join us again the following year. We’re working on recruiting our own fiefdom.
Kitty and Marko are officially part of the Ren Faire crew. I’ve missed Kitty so much as she’s been in New Orleans for the last month working in a Tech Accelerator Program aka “Got her mind on her money and her money on her mind.” It was beautiful to be around her. There was an exorbitant amount of squeeing and hugging. Damn, I love that girl! Probably as much as Finn loves Marko. Here he can be seen sporting Marko’s hat. He could scarcely see out from under it. That didn’t stop him.The beards reunited and the world was in alignment again.Finn was initially scared by a fierce viking but like most of the players at the ren faire, he was super nice and took off his giant hat and let Finn touch it. There was high-fiving afterwards and much rejoicing. Huzzah! We then celebrated with a pickle. If you’ve never been to the ren faire it’s good to know that your day will revolve around really good food and fun shows/activities. Schedule for the day: pickles followed by knife throwing. Blooming onions followed by axe throwing. Turkey legs followed by juggling chainsaws and explosives. That’s your day, you’re welcome. Did I mention my eldest is a star throwing champion? Oh, it’s probably because he’s overshadowed by his Test of Strength Champion brother and father. (FYI they give a sticker to everyone. No actual skillz required. That’s right, I added a ‘z.’ It’s serious.) If you find that the Ren Faire is filled with too much strength and manliness, there is always Ye Old Kissing Bridge. The bridge is a beautiful little spot to get a little peck from someone you love. I purposefully walk across that bridge every chance I get. My boys LOVE that. Kitty and Marko didn’t mind at all. There are a few shows that we adore going to each year–the Washing Women, the Dad and son Knife throwers–but there are two that really have our hearts. One of them is Arsene Dupin, the amazing magician. Words cannot express just how funny he is. No really, he doesn’t say one word the entire show. He’s not a creepy mime, he’s just hilarious. And then the other must see is Dextre Tripp. Dextre Tripp is an all around entertainer. His thrill show is filled with juggling, explosives, juggling chainsaws, water balloons…need I say more? The best part about it all is that he genuinely is a great guy. As our time at the faire was coming to a close, we did one final lap by his stage to see if we could buy one of his shirts and he happened to be there. Not only did he chat with us all but he signed t-shirts for the boys. It put an amazing finish on a pretty already stellar day. As an aside, I don’t have a ton of photos of Dextre because I feared for the safety of my camera when I was told the splash zone was the first 5 rows! lol. Overall, the Ren Faire is what you make of it. Some people like to get dressed up, while some just like to admire all the beautiful craftsmanship that people put into their costumes. It’s all up to you. I personally love to spend the Ren Faire with good people, laughing, and holding onto the end of summer for as long as I possibly can.