Florida Renaissance Festival brings history to life

Al Gardner creates a glass dragon on site at the Renassance Fair on Saturday.  Garnder has been practicing his craft of glass creations for over 40 years.  CHELSEA MATIASH // PHOTO EDITOR
Al Gardner creates a glass dragon on site at the Renassance Fair on Saturday. Garnder has been practicing his craft of glass creations for over 40 years. CHELSEA MATIASH // PHOTO EDITOR

Think of Deerfield Beach’s Renaissance Festival as something like a “Star Trek” convention for history majors or fans of “The Tudors.”

It’s certainly not the coolest place one could be spotted, but the Florida Renaissance Festival, now in its 17th year at Quiet Waters Park, still retains its dorky charm. Although it seems slightly subdued this year, the fair is still always worth a visit.

The best part of the fair is easily the Filthy Rotten Scoundrels, whose performances of classic literature are akin to Sparknotes set in a pit of mud. There’s always a chance visitors will emerge from the show completely covered in mud, but that’s part of the Renaissance Festival experience. Also reliably entertaining is Christophe the Insulter, who subjects his victims to a slew of 16th-century insults.

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Art-lovers can see glassblowers, weavers and blacksmiths partake in their crafts. If dressing like Henry VIII or Anne Boleyn seems more appealing, visitors can buy full Renaissance outfits; some dedicated fair-goers even wear them out in public. For those suffering from low self-esteem, just visit the Renaissance Festival. Seeing other visitors dressed up like history characters, fairies, and outrageous other costumes has the fun effect of making you, the normal person, feel far more confident about your appearance.

Themed weekends include Romance Weekend, Feb. 14-16; Pirates Weekend, Feb. 21-22; Wenches Weekend, Feb. 27-28; and Fantasy Weekend, March 7-8.

If You Go:

What: Florida Renaissance Festival

When: Every weekend through March 8, 10 am through sunset

Where: Quiet Waters Park, 401 S. Powerline Road, Deerfield Beach, FL

 

Cost: $20