Wednesday, June 10, 2009

Going to the faire ...

So I finally managed to attend the Three Barons Renaissance Fair here in Alaska. At first, not knowing what to expect, having not attended one in such a remote state as ours, I had chosen not to don my garb. Actually, I wasn't sure where it was as we've only been in our new house for, what, two months now?

Holy mackerel, has it really been two months already?! Where has the time gone!!!!

Oh, sorry about that. Two, three, four ... (I know at least one person out there will get that reference.)

Anyway, Logan convinced me to locate my Ren Fair costume and put it on. Yes, Logan. I know some of you will now need to close your swinging jaws, but it's true. He suddenly got a bug up his ... grandmother ... to see me in my wench wear. Not that I have proper wench bosom, but you can't have everything.

So last Saturday, sandwiched between my class, my writing group meeting, and a party I was supposed to attend later that night (which got waylaid by a migraine. Sorry, Megan! Happy 30th!), Logan and I braved the elements to visit the Three Barons.

I was pleasantly surprised that though things were looking dreary and gray that morning, by the time we go there the sun had made an appearance. It's doing a good job of making up for last year. I had brought my cloak just in case, but ended up leaving it in the car because I was hot. I was really hot, I think, for the first time here! Woohoo! (it's hot again today, hot being low to mid 70s, so I'm going back out to sit in it as soon as I'm done here.)

I was a trifle disappointed. There was plenty of room, and probably the crowds were diminished because of the construction going on nearby that made for some difficulties when finding the location, but the booths seemed rather sparse and the costuming more haphazard. I was worried at first because I no longer have proper period footwear and had to make do with my hiking boots, which, mostly hidden under my skirts, didn't look to bad. But I quickly noticed that almost everyone was wearing hiking boots or work boots or dark sneakers. Alaska doesn't bother with minutiae. Comfort and durability rules with an iron fist.

I was hoping to perhaps find a vendor selling period clothing and footwear, but there wasn't much. A few clothing booths, which did not boast much in the way of quality or quantity; more than a few booths of kids' games, food, and drink; one leather working vendor (probably the best vendor there, neat stuff); and lots of those sparkly wreaths with long ribbon streamers attached.

I did see one booth that had witches' hats made of any number of fabrics and patterns, as well as princess hats that I adored as a kid (too small for me, of course). As I looked at the hats, it dawned on me that I could make them myself. In fact, they were very much the kind of thing I would do were I to have a booth at a fair! I might have purchased one that had a cat pattern on it, but they didn't have any fabrics with cats on them.

We walked through the whole place in half an hour. We stopped and watched a few minutes of a little theatre show at the Red Barony. We watched as the Blue Barony did some of their stuff, which was mostly talking about themselves when we went by, and I don't remember ever seeing the Green Barony, though I'm pretty sure they were about, just not doing anything specific in their area at the time.

The most popular costumes seemed to be gypsy costumes. We saw lots of the those floating around. I guess Alaska girls take every opportunity to show off their tummies when they can, since most of the year it's too cold to do so.

Since Logan's brother had dropped us off so he could jaunt around Anchorage while we were doing that, we ended up walking down Tudor to a gas station to get something to drink. (If you have to pay for it, at least get something you know you like, right?) Then we walked back and sat on the lawn out front until Ben arrived.

I got tons of second glances from passing cars (and their drivers, too), and people were stopping me inside the gas station to ask about my costume and about the fair. They assumed I worked there. Apparently my costume is professional looking up here, when it barely passed any kind of muster in California. One little girl was shrieking to her mom, "Mommy, look at her dress, look at her dress!" And she asked me what kind of dress it was.

I guess I've finally found my smaller pond.


Dark Rapunzel said...

The title of this blog makes me think of Bill Cosby: "We're going to the zoo..."

Congratulations on finding a small pond!

And if you can sucker, I mean, coerce someone into coming down and filming the Follies, let me know. I wouldn't mind a copy myself! We still don't have video equipment yet.

Matthew said...

And how funny is it that the faire was on Tudor Road? Okay, maybe only to me.

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