View Full Version : Renaissance Festival - Education Day or Public Weekend?

06-13-2012, 03:14 PM
We will be studying the Middle Ages this fall. I want to take my children to a Renaissance Festival. The closest one offers a special education day for school groups and homeschoolers. I had planned to take the boys on that day. But, I spoke with a homeschooling mother who attended the education day last year and she felt that the programming was better on the public admission days. She also felt that the large school groups had too little adult supervision and that her family preferred the general public crowd interested in the event over the school groups who were there because they had to be. Do those who have been to Renaissance Festivals concur?

The education day is on a weekday. General admission is weekends. DH said he was not interested in attending, but if the programming is much better on the weekend, I may be able to convince him otherwise.

06-13-2012, 03:42 PM
Personally, I'd skip the one offered for school groups. I don't know about your kids, but my son gets very annoyed by the rowdiness and disinterest that the school kids we've encountered have displayed. Plus, ps groups often tend to be talked down to by program directors, which my son has zero tolerance for. I think there is so much cool stuff to experience on one's own at a Ren. Fest, especially if you are wanting to relate it to your current studies.

Of course that's just our experience, and my opinion. :)

06-13-2012, 03:48 PM
It's been a while since I've been to a ren fair, but my gut feeling is that the "education day" is more for the convenience of the fair staff, trying to keep all the school kids on one day. I suspect you would have a better experience if you go on a regular day.

Unless they offer a big price break on the education day...?

I don't know how much my opinion is worth, but there it is! :)

Little Brownelf
06-14-2012, 01:36 AM
^^ I agree. We annually attend our local ren fair and my kids get more out of regular attendance days because they can get more one-on-one time with the guilds and their performers than they would during a school day.

06-14-2012, 07:45 AM
Thanks. Education day tickets are at a reduced price, but not significantly less than tickets for Labor Day weekend. I talked with DH. He thinks Labor Day weekend will be too crowded - adults 2 for 1, children free. He has agreed to go later in September on Pirate's Weekend.

06-21-2012, 10:27 PM
I think it depends on the Faire. If they actually have some educational aspects and those run during the normal public weekends maybe just determine what of those you want to make sure you find. The last year I went to the MN Renn Faire I was sad that so much of it was more of a party with lots of barely covered modern things than it used to be. I went at one of their first years as a kid and had a blast watching the blacksmith, rolling ears of roasted corn in a big bag of salt on a table etc. The Society for Creative Anachronism sometimes holds Demo Days for the public or events that are geared at more scholarly interests that might be of interest to older kids with a really serious interest in history.

06-26-2012, 08:23 PM
The one we go to has a school day but they also do a scout program. The scout program is pretty detailed and educational, so I didn't bother with the school day. We went on a weekend that had a family friendly theme, versus going on the Bodacious Bodices weekend.

06-27-2012, 10:06 AM
DS8 and I attended a Knights of Valour show a few weeks back and whereas the weekend public days were primarily for entertainment purposes, they had a Medieval Educational School Tour set up during the week that was great! They had multiple pods that we travelled between with the same small group of grade 4 students (this is when they study the Middle Ages in ON) that were very well done - hands on and informative, and included falconry, horses, battle armour, weapons, etc. They also put on a very entertaining jousting show that the kids loved, but I was most impressed with the educational content of the school specific day. We haven't done the Middle Ages yet, but will definately go back to this venue when we get there!