My Experience at the Sherwood Forest Faire

By Kara Fields

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Hear ye, hear ye! The Renaissance Festival was lit!

Lords, ladies, witches, and mythical creatures alike are all welcome to the Sherwood Forest Faire held every year in McDade, Texas from March until the end of April.

My parents gave me a phone call the Thursday before the festival and reminded me not to party too hard now that I was in college – what they didn’t know was that their daughter was in the process of renting a costume for a Renaissance Festival and a good ol’ game of Dungeons & Dragons.

I’ve always been attracted to whimsical and slightly eccentric things, so when my friends wanted to go to the Sherwood Forest Faire (and with the last season of Game of Thrones being released at the time…big disappointment btw) I couldn’t say yes fast enough.

Walking into Lucy’s in Disguise with Diamonds, a quirky costume shop located on SOCO, the seven of us decided we would go big or go home. Some of us rented costumes for the weekend while others bought small items and supplemented them with some Medieval-y looking clothes we found at Goodwill. Following a night spent in a pillow fort (you can grow old people but that doesn’t mean you have to grow up), a dragon, two forest warriors, a peasant, two ladies, and an elf piled like enchanted clowns into a car and drove out into the Texan wilderness.

We drove down a small lane surrounded by a dense thicket of trees until we reached a clearing where people were being directed on where to park.

Upon entering the enchanted forest, we were greeted by my friend Sierra’s father, the announcer for the annual archery competition and the first prize winner for the competition itself.

Champion and announcer of the Sherwood Forest Faire annual archery competition (Also World’s Coolest Dad)

The Sherwood Forest Faire is known for its archery competition and we tried our hand at shooting a bow and arrow ourselves as if we were in the Hunger Games.

Lauren joins the bellydancers on stage

Wandering through the quaint village felt as if I were on a movie set. There were countless arts vendors, belly dancers and magicians, pickle stands and Turkish coffee (for some reason pickles and coffee were in vogue amongst the peasantry. I would recommend bringing a bottle of water and a granola bar), and on occasion the King of the festival and his entourage would trot by on horseback with shouts of “make way, make way!”

Pro tip: Go to the Puffin Hookah Lounge for an ice cold beverage

The best part or perhaps the worst part of this enchanted forest experience was that EVERYONE was in character. On the one hand, it was incredibly immersive which was very fun and allowed us to be transported to another world of whimsy where everyone dressed as if they were in a Disney movie and spent their time watching knights’ joust, eating only pickles and coffee to sustain themselves. On the other hand, sometimes visitors to the festival would get carried away and be a little too into their characters. Let’s just say that I didn’t know if the drunken pirate was staying in character or was actually just extremely drunk.

Dragon Blaine finds her kin

A comedy where women steal your boyfriends and beat them with wet clothes. A festival must.

At the end of it all, I would have to say that I really enjoyed myself at Sherwood. It was a great bonding experience to have with my friends and going all out with our costumes was definitely worth it. With that I bid you all good morrow, mayhap you will check out the festival next spring.

An elf, two warriors, two ladies and a peasant walk into a bar…