Sights, Scenes from King Richard’s Faire

To wrap up my series on King Richard’s 30th anniversary faire, I leave you with a few more images.

One of my favorite costumes…Puss – In – Boots

My Favorite Jousting Picture. I think it captures the speed and movement.

Pensive knight

Stilt People

Now where did we put those beer steins?Spock’s little Sister?

Kitty Kisses?

Snowy Tiger

And that’s a wrap for another year.

Joust to the Death, the Final Chapter

Well I can’t just end the tales from the Court without telling you about the last joust of the day.

 This was the Joust to the Death. I have no idea why all four knights had to joust when the challenge had been issued just between the two main characters but when I arrived at the field for Part 3, all four knights were present and accounted for.

No wooden rings or jousting dummys this time. The knights and their steeds squared off, lowered their lances and charged.

There were several glancing blows before the first knight was unseated.

 That’s when the fighting moved to the ground.

 That’s also when it got really confusing.Something happened that I missed because the “Bad Knight” was winning when all three of the other knights came after him.

There was much yelling and I couldn’t make out what they were saying but as the scene wound down it became clear that the “Good Night” was cleared of the accusations and that the real thief (surprise, surprise) was really the “Bad Knight”. He was dragged off to be put in chains.

The Good Knight took his bows and no one died. The crowd began to disperse and make its way to the exits.  It was a really good day.

Well that about wraps up my posts of my day at King Richard’s Faire. I have a few more images to share  and then it’s on to the next adventure.

Pomp and Circumstance ~The King’s Tournament

The Knights and Jousting at King Richard’s Faire certainly follows the most ritualistic formula.

The “ring master” announced the King who mounts the viewing stand,

then announces the Knights who gallop in and take a run around the field before lining up in front of the King to pledge their loyalty. Then the King commands the games to begin  and each Knight heads to his place in the field.

On command they race full tilt at a jousting dummy or spear rings that are thrown in the air by their squires.  These are the games and sort of set the stage for the last meet in the afternoon when the “real” joust takes place.

Every year there is a back story to the jousts. It is played out in 3 parts. The morning games lay the groundwork and determine the “champion.” Usually it is also when you find out what the thing is that went wrong. Maybe it’s two Knights vying for the same Maiden or this year the Gold Prize for the games was missing.

Since I was lingering at the Tiger Stage so I could get the picture with the hawk, I missed this show which was called  “The Challenge of the Champions”.

It was now 2:30 and  I was ready at the field. The title of this installment was “The King’s Tournament”. This was when I was brought up to speed with the story.

When the Knights were introduced the “villain” Knight was argumentative and accusatory. It was pretty clear he was the “bad guy” but he was also the most popular. He got loads of cheers.

Two other Knights seemed to be there just to fill out the cast. They rode and performed the stunts but with little banter.

 The last Knight to be brought in was announced as the Champion. I assume he must have won the morning Challenge to earn the title. It was clear the Bad Knight had it in for the new Knight even accusing him of stealing the prize.

As the Tournament progressed the war of words intensified and “Bad Knight” was disqualified for cheating. Finally  “bad Knight” accused “Champion” of the theft and challenged him to a fight to the death.

The King allowed the challenge and everyone was to return to the Tournament field for the  last installment of the story the “Joust to the Death.”

The dismissed Knights galloped out of the arena but not before Bad Knight attempted to engage Good Knight (yes, I know, bad pun) in some hand- to -hand.

As the crowd began to disperse the squires returned with the horses, now unsaddled. Immediately each of  the horses picked out a favorite place and dropped and rolled. You could just tell how good that felt to them. 🙂 Nothing like a good dust bath to get ride of that sweat.

I’d seen as much as I wanted but I was curious about the afternoon joust so I wandered back to the picnic area where I spent the afternoon watching the crowds until it was time for the last installment.

Are we Jousting yet?

After lunch I made my way back toward the Tournament Field.

It was still early but I wasn’t that interested in the Mud Wrestlers or the Cirque de Sewer. As I walked by the Tiger Stage a lone performer was calling to the crowd to come and watch “Jacques” zee Whipper. We would not be sorry..or so he said. So with time to spare I slipped into a seat to see what this was all about.

Turns out that “Jack the Whipper” was a show using whips. My first thought was a medieval Indiana Jones but no. No adventure here. It was a very basic but silly show. “Jack” had a handlebar mustache drawn on his face and spoke with a very heavy fake french accent…when he remembered to use the accent . His lapses were deliberate, I’m sure. 🙂

He explained the difference in whips and cracked the various ones so we could hear the different sounds. He wrapped himself up in them and managed to break uncooked spaghetti that he held in his own mouth. When he was speaking and had to refer to himself, he had an audience member honk a horn…Jack zee Whipper (honk honk).

Of course he had a volunteer come up and hold a piece if spaghetti and he whipped that too. Between you and me I think that audience member volunteer was a “plant”. The liability would be too much if it was a real audience member. It was all entertaining but I was anxious to get to the Tournament Field.

Just as I was about to leave “Jacques” brought out a bucket of gasoline. He had a whip soaking in it. As he babbled on about the danger he lit a lighter and whoa! The whip was on fire! That made us all sit up and take notice. His antics with the flaming whip were impressive to say the least. Everything was moving so fast that it was hard to get a shot without  motion blur but here’s what I caught.

Quite the finale and now (drum roll please) it’s really time to head to the tournament field for the jousting. This was the original reason for my visit.

I climbed the hill next to the tournament filed for an unobstructed view…Perfect. The king was just arriving. He hadn’t climbed to his viewing area yet. I’d made it in time…just!

There were costumed players urging the crowd to cheer for their champion.

Each of the 4 quarters were assigned a different knight to cheer for.

 The king stepped to the front of the podium, the gates opened and the Knights came galloping in!

Let the Jousting Begin !