What makes the faire so inviting is just that, it's very inviting. A crowd welcomes you, a roving procession of Scotsman with bagpipes maybe around another turn, you may saunter through arches of flowers being carried through as did my party and I as we went opening day for the festivities.
The Renaissance Pleasure Faire returns once again to Irwindale in a park that magically transforms to another time, another realm, a place where you can dress in leggings and wear fashion that would not be questionable on any runway in LA. The event takes on the feel of a village with artisans of old selling all sorts of wares to entice. Games to play, that could be considered most bad-ass. Hurling ninja-stars, axes and knives is always a fun way to train for your next action movie marathon. You can see the passing parades or folks who decided to dress up. And then watch the joust!
With a big party this time around, it was hard to stay one minute at any location, which is a shame, because there's so many shows to see. We did somehow all get together at the end of our time their for the Joust, which there are three daily. Watching knights ride horses and the cheer of the crowd, that's a fun festivity to shout about and get behind. And we did, we shouted for our Green Knight, but alas, he sucked. So much that we came up with a back story about alcoholism and his wife and kids leaving him. Thank goodness he "died" as the the final joust is to death. A bit harsh? It's just in good fun.
The jousts are one of many shows going on throughout the faire, just sit down and watch the Washing Well Wenches, plays, tricks and magic. As stated, we looked around so much we only got the joust, but they echoes and sounds in the background everywhere we looked and walked had us hearing the shows going on.
For those inclined for something to drink of the adult variety they have a wide selection and even a drinking tour. My friends did partake of the mead- honey wine and said it was quite tasty. It was nice to see some Starfleet Officers a little intoxicated, but more than friendly enough to take some picture with us.
You should probably go easy on the mead if you're trying your luck at any of the games. They have all manner of festival games there, though with a bit more edge. Throwing weapons means steady aim and some good luck.
They have too long a list for kid activities or add-ons for your kids to try. There's a Kid's Militia, kiddie training for the queen and a Gnome Hunt to name a few. Don't forget a Pirate-themed quest, that I sort of wish I could do as an adult.
You can come dressed already in whatever cosplay or can rent outfits from their costume shop. Look online to see pricing.
The faire isn't with out somethings that could be better.
Parking- It's simply $10, when I arrived all a sign read was they wanted an extra $20 on top of the $10 for preferred, yeshh.
Food- They have a big ol' turkey leg for your Instagram pic. Meat pies a plenty, other fine treats. When it comes to main courses or real meals...they need to rethink the menu. Priced with the knowledge you're stuck there and you're getting most things on par with a cafeteria, not a great cafeteria either, they need to try harder.
The Original Renaissance Pleasure Faire
Saturdays and Sundays April 8 thru May 21, 2017 · 10 a.m. – 7 p.m.
Only minutes from Pasadena at the Santa Fe Dam Recreation Area15501 E. Arrow Highway, Irwindale, CA
* Tickets can be bought at a cheaper price at certain Walgreen's starting April 1st
Adult single day – $29.95
Child (ages 5-12) single day – $15
Children 4 and younger are FREE!
Adult Season Pass – $150.00
Child Season Pass (ages 5-12) – $60.00
A Vehicle Entry fee of $10 is charged upon entry to the Santa Fe Dam Recreational Area by Los Angeles County.
Valet Service is available for an additional $20.