Arizona has an amazing Renaissance Faire, I had been to it once before a few years ago and I was excited to go back! It's located right in the middle of nowhere surrounded by nothing but desert. It's amazing to walk from the dusty parking lot, through the gates and be transported back in time to an immersive medieval village.
There were actors dressed in period dress, shops selling medieval wares, jousting tournaments, food stalls selling turkey legs and ale, there was even a unicorn for us to pet.
The flower crowns are always a big hit with our family
James thought this dragon was the coolest thing in the world, he was so excited to get a picture with him.
The dragon gave James a special dragon medallion which made it the best day ever for him!
Seriously, we could not get enough of the flower crowns.
We always love to visit the brass rubbings shop. The kids have a fun time picking out cool designs and making their very own rubbings.
Beth, V and I were ecstatic to find a spot were we could hold and pet all sorts of adorable birds.
Magical fairy shop
Meeting the mystical and magical unicorn!
Kira the unicorn was part of a petting zoo that was home to some super adorable, and friendly animals.
James and V really wanted to ride the giant rocking horse, so Reece made their dreams come true by riding with them. A cool little fact about all the rides at this faire, they are all man powered, no motors or electric gears or anything. To make the rocking horse rock, there were three workers on the base pushing and pulling and using their body weight to create a rocking motion.
This fierce fighter challenged a whole group of kids, saying he could defeat all of them without them getting a single hit on him ... he was right ...
There was a dragon store and the boys could not get enough of it's magic. Ben bought a dragon egg that had a surprise inside. He was guaranteed to win at least a little dragon, but had a chance at winning a big one. All the boys were bouncing up and down with anticipation as the clerk ceremoniously opened the egg to reveal the prize Ben had one. He walked away one happy guy with a small blue dragon!
These dragons perch on your should and have a wire that threads through your sleeve that has a button on the end you hold in your hand that controls the dragon's head. So, as the dragon tamer, you can make it look alive by having it look around and move it's head.
Next up, a little archery!
Will helping James with his bow was the cutest thing ever.
We passed by this insult game and we could not pull the boys away, kids and adults, they just were so intrigued, they loved the idea of a challenge. So, to my surprise, they purchased some tomatoes to throw and the insult thrower.
The guy at the heart of the target had a constant flow of insults aimed at whoever was throwing the tomatoes. I have to admit, he was pretty witty and was a quick thinker. However, I'm pretty sure there was no actual possibility of him getting hit, the way his little shack was set up, left little of him exposed ...
They let Thomas and James get up nice and close to give them a better chance at hitting him with their tomatoes. While he did still throw a few insults their way, he was a lot nicer and most of the insults he used went right over their head, so they just had fun trying to hit him.
The guy actually tried to move IN the way of James' tomatoes to help get him a win, but James' throws were a little too low, but it was still cute of him to try.
The procession of royalty heading to the jousting tournament.
The stadium was divided into four sections, and each section had a specific knight to cheer for. Our knight was the most experienced and wore the colors black and gold.
Each knight would score points based on the intensity and aim of their hits. 1 point for a hit on the shield, 2 points for breaking the tip of their lance, 3 points for shattering their lance.
At the end of the tournament, the knights anxiously waited while the judges tallied up the points...
Our gold and black knight won!
James and Thomas were so excited to ride these steam punk pirate airships, we had passed them right as we got to the faire and they waited patiently all day to get to ride them.
Another example of how all the rides were man powered, two to three pirates used the chains on the airships to spin them round and round like a carousel.
It was hard to get a good pictures of the boys, but they were in heaven.
While the littles were riding the airships, the big boys played with ninja stars, crossbows and axes.
Even though I don't think I have ever been as hot and sweaty as I was during this faire, it was definitely a fantastic time. Everyone had a total blast and, as always, it was such a joy to spend the day with family.