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May 7

I wanted to take a shot of this huge guy, his cool costume, his beer and his turkey leg. He kept yelling 'give me thy wench there!' so Sharon acceded, hanging on to her glasses for safety.

This is the second year in a new location, in Irwindale at the Santa Fe Dam Recreation Area, so much closer than the location of the last many years. I think it was one of my most enjoyable times at the Faire. There were more paved pathways and grass than before cutting down on the dust...

...and the percentage and quality of costumed participants was very high.

Also the food stands were 'right', the shops were fine, and all the entertainment was great - shows, games, rides, music, parades - very cool.

I usually don't post photos of cranky old guys but there you go. This group was playing a lively fanfare. It was fun. The parades in general were delightful.

We got there early and although there were fewer participants than later the crowds were so much lighter it was worth it. By 2pm the place was completely packed shoulder to shoulder and we were glad to have had our fill and could leave.

Soooo many major b*s*ms on view.

Nice.

Young ladies, on promenade...

...trolling for hotties like this one.

Except for the food court nothing was electrified. There were wonderfully designed rides and games - I was seriously impressed - and very cool activities for the kids. The woman in the foreground is teaching a group how to use a lance. The woman in the wings is taking pictures of her children. There were also (wooden) sword classes and a rifle class.

'Renaissance' is a loose term here as a wide range of costumes are welcomed.

A musician, of which there were many just hanging around for your entertainment.

There were also games of skill and strength. For some there was an extra charge but there was also plenty to enjoy without reaching into your pocket. The shows pitched for donations and if the one we sat through is any example you Want to lay a few bucks on these guys.

The elaborately costumed groups are such a kick.

All Hale! Prepare for the Queen!

Here she is! The Queen!!

Maybe it was the arriving early and that it wasn't killer hot that improved the experience. It was great fun, really, and you can still go as it doesn't close for a few more weeks.

Their website: The 2006 Renaissance Pleasure Faire.
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