By: Renee Profitt | Category: Recreation/Leisure | Issue: May 2009
Costumed villagers are always a sight to see at the Castle of Muskogee’s Oklahoma Renaissance Festival.
Journey back in time to the 16th century and be immersed in the grandeur of Renaissance England as the Castle of Muskogee and the village of Castleton come alive, with over 500 costumed villagers and stage and street performers providing entertainment fit for royalty. You’ll step back in time to days of old with King Henry VIII, Queen Margaret of Scotland, the Royal Court, jousters, jesters, jugglers, magicians, musicians and minstrels, where you can delight your taste buds with the wonderful and unique foods of the day and browse through more than 100 handcrafted booths with one-of-a-kind items.
Fourteen stages will be filled with professional entertainers from across the New World, plus hundreds of street performers. New entertainment acts this year include musician Alexander James Adams from Oregon; Cut, Thrust and Run, a troupe of bloodthirsty pirate comedians from Texas; Willies Wenches, comely lasses from Kansas; the Jester Rejects, twin jugglers who began their career in China; and the magical entertainment of Matthew VanZee from Washington.
In the Tournament Arena, you’ll see the Knights of Noble Cause clash with sword and pike as they joust. Later, you can watch as the Birds of Prey demonstrate the hunt just as it was during the time of Kings and Lords. Move to the Living Chess Match and cheer on your Red Griffin favorites.
The Renaissance Festival has grown to fill acres and acres of the Castleton fields and forest. Stroll down twisting, tree-covered village lanes filled with quaint shops displaying rare, one-of-a-kind, artisan-crafted goods. Stop at one of the inns for a flagon of ale, or don the latest Renaissance fashions, found in the marketplace. Follow the aromas of the fire-roasted food, and then let the kids play some of the games or watch the performers while you enjoy a huge smoked turkey leg.
Check out the Birds of Prey demonstrate the hunt as it was done during the 16th century.
Several special royal activities will be going on as well, including a Masked Ball on Saturday, May 9 and a King’s Feaste on Saturday, May 16. Lunch with the King is a daily royal option in which you can join King Henry VIII for a repast of fine dining prepared by his very own chef, Chad Page. Queen's Tea is held daily as well, in which you are cordially invited to join Queen Margaret and her court ladies for a delectable repast of sweets, finger sandwiches and tea.
Every day at 4:15 p.m., adults 21 and older can stop by the New Smoker for an hour of bawdy humor at the Fox & Pheasant Tavern. Enjoy a premium cigar, two pints of ale and a succulent portion of the king’s daily kill, in addition to belly dancing and risqué songs. To celebrate the end of the festival on May 30 will be the Ceilidh, featuring wonderful music, dancing and fun. Go online to www.okcastle.com to learn more about these special events, or all (918) 687-3625 to purchase advanced tickets.
“The Renaissance Festival is fun for the entire family. With shopping, live entertainment, games, food and special activities, there is something for everyone to enjoy,” says Matt Hiller, vice president and advertising director for the Castle of Muskogee.
Fascinating fun and entertainment for all ages will be found at the 14th Annual Oklahoma Renaissance Festival every weekend in May. Dates and hours are May 2-3, 8-10, 16-17, 23-25 and 30-31 from 10:30 a.m. to 6 p.m. Student Day is May 8 from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. For more information, go online to www.okcastle.com.