Take a unique trip back in time to the Arizona Renaissance Festival Saturdays and Sundays Feb. 3-March 31 at 12601 E. U.S. Highway 60 in Gold Canyon, just east of Apache Junction.
The festival’s 50-acre 16th century European village has 16 stages of nonstop entertainment, music, comedy, falconry, dance, mermaids and acrobatics. Foolish pleasures mix with artisan treasures as you shop, eat and mingle with a cast of nearly 2,000 colorfully costumed characters, according to a release.
New this year: The Hops, a comedic pub crawl, which includes a flight of four pours and a mad silly brew tour with Rowland and Florian — The Renaissance Men. Also new this season: The Reelin’ Rogues, a new music act; and Supernova the Strongwoman, a new act.
Explore the village marketplace with more than 200 storybook shops, studios and galleries filled with unique arts and crafts, handmade wares, kitchens, pubs and games. Also to people-powered rides such as Da Vinci’s Flying Machine, The Slider Joust and Piccolo Pony — a rocking horse bigger than an elephant. There’s The Dragon Climbing Tower, Castle Siege, the Maze, Archery Range and more.
The live jousting tournaments are one of the festival’s most popular attractions. Armored knights on charging steeds take up their lances and battle for the queen’s honor. Cheer on your favorite armored knight at one of the three daily jousting tournaments in a 5,000-seat arena.
In addition to the revelry, the festival offers food fit for a king. Attend the Pleasure Feast and be treated like a true royal while you savor five courses of fine food, ample drink, and enjoy an hour and a half of raucous Renaissance entertainment at its best. The Pleasure Feast, held twice daily, includes admission to the festival and a special edition Pleasure Feast goblet. Advance reservations are recommended.
Food is plentiful and available throughout the village. The menu is diverse with offerings such as steak-on-a-stake, turkey legs, vegetable and meat pies, pastas, bread bowls filled with hearty stews, and more. There are desserts such as crepes, chimney rolls or a variety of other sweet treat surprises.
Go to Arizona.RenFestInfo for tickets and information.