Our first trip to the Ohio Renaissance Festival was back in 2010. We really enjoyed ourselves and made it a point to try and attend every year. We loved the environment, the way people stay in character, the manned rides, and the food. There is plenty of fun and entertainment for the whole family and it's always a fabulous time.
* Thanks to US Family Guide, we received four passes to the Ohio Renaissance Festival in exchange for an unbiased review of our experience.
We were incredibly excited to attend the festival this year, so we left our home around noon and headed off for the one hour journey to Waynestown, Ohio. On the way there, we stopped for some hot dogs so that we could fill our stomachs before we made our appearance.
Carter—who is obviously camera shy—brought his sword, ready to show off to any knights who might question him.
Being the sweet, caring brother that he is, he brought protection for Ireland as well.
Unfortunately, we forgot the swords in the car by the time we reached the entrance—and if you've ever been to the Ohio Renaissance Festival, you know that the walk to the parking area is very long, so we didn't head back to get them.
The day was perfect for the Ohio Renaissance Festival. It was a beautiful 75 degrees with blue skies and fluffy, white cumulus clouds.
"Are we there yet?"
We saw corn fields, wild flowers, and some of the trees were even beginning to show their fall colors.
At last, we arrived! After picking up our tickets from Will Call, we were greeted by a man atop the castle who wasn't quite sure how to get down! The kids got a kick out of that!
When we walked through the castle gates, we were greeted and given a map of the festival. There was so much to do and so much to see!
As soon as we opened our map, we heard a beautiful tune playing from several feet away. My husband pointed out that it sounded like an ocarina. An ocarina is a flute-like instrument that our son, Carter, has been learning to play. We listened to the sound and followed it to an ocarina booth.
Carter was mesmerized. He is a huge fan of the Legend of Zelda, so he ran over to see the available ocarinas and listen to the women at the stand talk about the beauty of them. We even had the chance to hear her play a tune! It was beautiful! She was very, very talented.
Ireland was equally as excited about the Ocarina Stand.
At the stand, there were also some cute, ceramic bird water pipes for sale. They were so cute!
We even saw this little gem. The sign reads, "Due to the plague, thou shalt not toot. - By order of the Queen." What a fun sign!
While walking through the festival grounds, we saw several different attractions. There was jousting, horses, a pirate's ship, magic shows, and so much more to see and do! And don't forget the food! At the Ohio Renaissance Festival, you're missing out if you don't try one of their giant turkey legs!
Carter was most excited about the rides. He stood in line with his cousin to ride the Sea Dragon. Once the ride started moving, however, he wasn't too enthused. Fortunately, the man operating the ride (all rides at the Renaissance Festival are manned rides—there was no electricity during the Renaissance) jumped aboard and helped calm Carter down, all while still remaining in character!
Here's Carter climbing on the ride, very excited, but unaware of what was yet to come.
Ireland was very worried about him.
The ride was getting ready to start, and you could already see how nervous Carter was.
Below is a short video of Carter on the ride. He looks terrified! You can hear Ireland shouting for him, as she, too, was worried. Luckily, Carter was perfectly fine once he got off.
Finally, the ride was over and Carter was relieved.
Check out this video to see how much the kids liked (or didn't like) the ride! Ha!
Before the next ride, we relaxed a little bit since Carter was so shaken up. Ireland, on the other hand, was just happy that her brother wasn't scared anymore!
We headed off to another ride, and this one, Carter was actually okay with. He could control how fast or high this ride went, so he was pleased.
On our way back from the above ride, we stopped for a magic show! The kids had a great laugh and really enjoyed the silliness. Some of the tricks actually impressed me, which I didn't expect at all—like crumbling a bag when it had a glass bottle in it, or hiding a cantaloupe under a hat without anyone seeing. Pretty incredible!
After the magic show and lots of giggles, Carter hopped on one last ride.
These swings, like all rides at the Renaissance Festival, were man-powered.
Before heading out, we visited the Medieval Castle, or the "Tower of London." It's also known as the Dungeon of Doom. Carter really enjoyed seeing the authentic medieval punishment devices and reading about their history. Considering that we've been studying the Renaissance in history, it also served as a great lesson!
As with every year, we enjoyed a fabulous trip to the Ohio Renaissance Festival. We always look forward to going back!