Oregon Renaissance Faire offers family-friendly fun
The clash of steel, the sounds of singing, and plenty of laughter and mirth will once again be heard in the tree-lined back area of the Clackamas County Event Center this summer.
The Oregon Renaissance Faire returns for a third act in Canby and judging by the crowds that have turned out the first two years, things should be plenty entertaining once again in the Vale of Dunrose. Once again, this year's faire will span two weekends.
"We are really, really excited to be coming back to Canby," said Tracy Nietupski, operations manager for the Oregon Renaissance Faire. "Canby has been amazing. The local people have been very nice and everyone has welcomed us.
"We feel like family down there, like we're coming home," she added.
This year's faire will run June 9-10 and 16-17, and come with specific themes for the weekends.
Celtic Celebration: Highland Fling will be the focus for the June 9-10 weekend, offering faire-goers a chance to break out their kilts, show off those knees and join a true celebration of the mighty Scots and the Faire's own Mary, Queen of Scots. A week later, June 16-17, the theme will be Valiant of the Vale: Honor Your Hero. This event will honor dads and anyone that has been a hero in people's lives.
While there's plenty for adults to do at the faire, Nietupski wanted to make sure folks know that there's also plenty of kid fun, too. Robin Hood and Maid Marian will be on hand, as well as giant rocking horses, pony rides, puppet shows and more. Something that was started last year, but will be fully implemented during this year's fare is the Dragon Adventure. "Five little Dragons have come to visit the Vale of Dunrose! Orfie, Blaze, Soot, Wheezy, and Snort were on their way to visit Her Majesty, Mary Queen of Scots, but found themselves lost along the way. Explore and discover the fun and excitement of the Oregon Renaissance Faire as you help us find all five of the lost little Dragons." Completely free to play, children search for the five small plastic dragons amongst the faire.
"When they find a dragon, they have mom or dad snap a photo of them and the found dragon and post to Facebook or other social media sites with the hashtag #ORF2018," said Nietupski. Once they've found all five little dragons and posted the portraits, the kids can get a prize at Her Majesty's Favour – Treasures, Trinkets and Souvenirs.
It's an added little thing to help create the family fun atmosphere the faire wants to create. It was just over a two years ago that, after a long search of possible facilities, organizers decided to kick of their first season in Canby.
The event features more than 500 costumed performers and contributors dressed in period costume, as well as large numbers of attendees doing the same. Nietupski noted that the goal is to put on a family-friendly event and that wearing shorts and t-shirts are quite all right. It's about fun and learning more about a remarkable time in Scottish history through sight, sound and getting involved a bit.
So, when Mary Queen of Scots and her retinue arrive in the Vale in the year 1536, there will be plenty to experience -- music, magicians, stage shows, jousting, merchants, food and drink for all ages, including adults. The Cat and Fiddle Pub will have its bar wenches serving cider, ale and mead.
Back this year will be MooNiE the Magnif'Cent. An immersive silent comedy experience that brings the audience in using whistles and. Adding to the comedy is MooNiE's mesmerizing balancing and juggling skills, creating an enjoyable family-friendly show that has something for everyone. Stick around for his final show of the day when MooNiE teams up with the edgy sarcastic Broon for the largely improvised MooNiE and BrooN Show. A perfect double act, clashing and complimenting to create the ideal recipe for painfully good comedy where no one will know what they're going to do next, including them. And there are plenty of other entertainment acts to enjoy.
"MooNie and BrooN are not to be missed," said Nietupski. "We've also got some new merchants coming this year.
This year's event will feature more of everything – more than 40 unique vendors, eight food vendors, two pubs, entertainment, and plenty of fun in-between.
The faire is open from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. each day. More information and tickets are available on the website at www.oregonfaire.com.