Tuesday, May 11, 2010

2010 GA Ren Fest, Take Two

So you know we already went to the Georgia Renaissance Festival once this year, but I remembered that Mom mentioned last year that she had never been. So, we decided to take my parents back the following weekend (May 1). I also had Dad bring the big camera with the big zoom, so the photos would be good (well, better). Everyone seemed to have a really good time! We started with Barely Balanced again, since I knew my parents would enjoy that.

They swung an audience kid around on Small's feet:

Medium and Large having fun juggling knives while "barely balanced". Sharp or not, that would still hurt if it landed on your head!

One of those fun "how'd they do that?!" tricks:

And my personal favorite. Having watched DH juggling and how any little change in the balls makes things fall, watching her plucking things out of the air while they juggle without anyone dropping anything is pretty amazing.

Next up, it was time for the joust. I know, seems like we're repeating ourselves, but I didn't know if we would stay long enough for the second joust, and I knew everyone wanted to see it, so off we went. Love the big zoom!

And watching the lance splinter via photos is pretty cool.

We had lunch, and we let Luke (and DH) run around and have some fun. The brave knight (so many people stopped and asked where we got the sword and shield; I bought them before L was born for me!):

Death to tyrants! LOL

Hey, that doesn't seem like a fair fight.

I love this shot of the sword just floating in mid-air.

And this guy was great. I'm pretty sure he and his group were just visitors, not cast. I actually missed this interaction, but I had seen this man walk past me when I was getting food. That shield he is holding was massive! I know you can see it in the photos, but that really doesn't do it justice. It was also solid wood. It *looked* heavy, and I'm sure it was. Apparently, when he saw Luke playing in the field, he got a huge grin on his face and decided to engage Luke. May not have been the best plan, since I think Luke caught him in the shins mere moments after this photo was taken. I know the sword is just foam, but it can still hurt! Mom and Dad said that he just got a big kick out of it, though.

We then headed over to Fool's Knoll for two shows we had missed on our previous trip. First up was Breaking Point. I had seen them either last year or the year before when they were a "wandering act." They got promoted to a stage act, and though they are still building up their audience, we enjoyed the show. First up was "contact juggling," which I had seen but didn't know that's what it is called. This (presumably) glass ball stayed in contact with his body at all times, but he made it do really amazing things (hard to demonstrate via still photos):

And in my proudest moment to date, Luke decided he wanted to volunteer! He showed some interest at Flights of Wonder at Disney this year, but they ran out of chances by the time he decided he wanted to do so. I tried to get him to volunteer at Maxx and Mauldron the previous weekend, but he didn't seem to want to (Maxx is a little intimidating up close to a 5-year-old, I think, between his height and all the armor). So when they started asking for volunteers, he said he wanted to. I thought the little girl sitting in the front row would get it, but once they called on her, she changed her mind. Luke was the next obvious choice, sitting right on the aisle and raising his hand in the "ooh, ooh, pick me" dance. And they did! Dad took stills:

Wait, what have I gotten myself into?

Up we go!

You're gonna do what with this balloon?

Take one:

Take two, and pow!

Knowing Dad had the stills covered, I switched to video (only the final moment here, since my battery picked this precise moment to try and die, natch):

Photo Sharing - Video Sharing - Photo Printing

Yay Luke!! He had so much fun, and so did we. Immediately following Breaking Point was Todd Keys and the Flying Debris Show. I really miss his act with his partner as the Zucchini Brothers, but he's been solo the last several years. He is also a local, so if anyone needs a juggler for a party in the Atlanta area, look him up. This is the 25th anniversary of the Georgia Renaissance Festival, and he said he's been to 23 of them. And he's always great! I've seen him do this trick before, but never with a kid *this* young! I'm not even sure this little boy was 2; if so, it was just barely. But he did great!

And his final combo trick, made even more amazing when you factor in the wind:

We had ride tickets with our combo pack, so we let Luke do a couple. First was this spinning ride, which I imagine may well have been period. This "gondola" is attached to ropes at the top of a post (didn't take a photo of the whole thing, like an idiot):

And two really big guys spin it, so that the ropes wind and unwind themselves around the poll. Ready?


Then there was this one. There were three of these little "ships" with a rope in the middle (the Nina, the Pinta, and the Santa Maria, ha ha ha). Big guy gives you a push, to set you swinging back and forth, then the occupants pull on the rope to keep it going.

After that, Luke was starting to crash. He was begging for ice cream, but I knew he wanted soft-serve, which they don't have. I did get him a plain scoop of vanilla, but that didn't seem to suffice. The rain was also headed in, and everyone was tired. I did bump into my friend Valerie, who is now entertainment director, as we left. We did go on one final quest for a pirate hat as we left (he had seen another kid wearing one), but we ended up with a Robin Hood style hat instead (huh, don't have a good photo of that; will try to get one). A great time was had by all! Looking forward to next year.
Currently feeling: festive

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