The Florida Renaissance Festival in Deerfield Beach, Florida (42 miles north of Miami), delivers a taste of the Renaissance. The variety of entertainment from jousting to high wire walking pirates make it a well-rounded day of fun. And while there were pirates and wenches abound, nothing was cuter than the pirate’s wiener we found hanging out in the shade by Merlin’s Magic Bubbles.
The vendors are always amazing and put such dedication into their work. My favorite vendor, Woodsong Instruments, wasn’t in attendance this year and about crushed my little Ren Faire soul. I bought a lovely handmade Lakota Love Flute from them last year and was hoping to pick up another instrument from them this year.
My mom is a big fan of R Hiannon Oils and Incenses booth and stocked up on his bottles and smells to adorn her house. He sells out of some of his stuff quick, so if this is your thing, hit him up early in the festival.
If you want to see some high craftsmanship in the leather trade, you won’t be disappointed by the availability of everything from boots to quivers to journals and more. The leather armor was quite impressive (though also quite understandably expensive).
Musicians are everywhere, but none captured my attention like James O’Clair on his heart string instruments. He’s been attending the festival for the past 19 years and I’ve found him in the same spot the past couple of years. If you want to give him a listen, he sits by ye olden zip line near the Washing Wenches show. Make sure you grab a CD if you want one because I can’t find him anywhere on the interwebs.
While you’re there, you are bound to get hungry.
Take my advice and skip the food court areas. Instead, locate the guy selling meat on a stick. The beef stick was by far the best I’ve ever had, and that is no exaggeration. I would have gone back for another weekend just to devour more of them. The beef tenderloin stick runs $8 a stick, but oh my royal courts are they worth it. And after you munch down, find the vendor in the food court selling the deep fried Oreos. Not quite your typical Renaissance food, but who cares? It’s a deep fried Oreo!
Overall it was a pleasant day of walking around, devouring snow cones, and interacting with the players. The actors did a nice job keeping the atmosphere alive. The musical acts added a lovely ambiance as we walked the various booths. And once again, I forgot everything my mother told me about plastic bags and children and shoved my son into an inflatable ball and tossed him out on a lake.
A lovely day indeed.
The Florida Renaissance Festival runs from February 10th through March 26th and is open on Saturdays and Sundays from 10AM to sunset. For more information, check out their website.
Disclaimer: GeekMom was given tickets into this event.