Updated: Sep 18, 2019
The Elizabethan era is the period of the History of England during the reign of Queen Elizabeth I from 1558 to 1603. Historians often depict it as the golden age in English history. The Bristol Renaissance Faire is held in a Renaissance-themed park in the Village of Bristol, Wisconsin. It recreates a visit of Queen Elizabeth I to the English port city of "Bristol" in the year 1574. Founded in 1972 - the park averages between 200k-400k visitors per year. There are jousting tournaments, historical reenactments, and stage shows!
The first time I went to the Ren Fair was in 2010. I tagged along with a girl I was dating at the time and her mother who happened to be Pagan. Dressing up in costumes and time traveling to the past was enough to get me in the car for the hour and a half drive to Wisconsin. It's been about seven years since I visited the park and this summer I had it on my infamous "to-do" list. This particular weekend I decided to go, was a comic con themed event. It sort of threw off the "1574" vibe, but it still seemed very authentic due to the hard work of the vendors and employees. I came across a quote from Journalist Neil Steinberg that pretty much sums it all up. "If theme parks, with their pasteboard main streets, reek of a bland, safe, homogenized, whitebread America, the Renaissance Faire is at the other end of the social spectrum, a whiff of the occult, a flash of danger and a hint of the erotic. Here, they let you throw axes. Here are more beer and bosoms than you'll find in all of Disney World." I stayed for a few hours and made a bunch of rounds checking out nearly every single booth. I brought my camera along, but didn't take nearly as many photos as I originally anticipated. Either way, here are some images from my journey back to 1574