The Hungry Wanderers

Eating and exploring our way through the world

Carolina Renaissance Festival

Posted by Amanda @ The Hungry Wanderers on November 9, 2009

On Saturday, the Husband and I finally made it to this year’s Carolina Renaissance Festival, conveniently located just north of Charlotte in Huntersville, NC.  We’ve both been to the Maryland Renaissance Festival and we attended the Carolina Renn Fest last year.  We were looking forward to going again this year, but when October hit (the festival is in October and November each year at a permanent location) we realized that our travel schedule was just too much! Luckily, this weekend we were both home and the festival was still going on.  We had great weather too!



The festival is open on Saturdays and Sundays from 10am to 5:30pm.  We headed up around 1pm (after putzing around and being lazy).  There was a bit of a scare when we realized we were low on gas as we sat in traffic slowly inching our way to the festival grounds.  Luckily we made it with out running out (and made it to a gas station after the event)!

We had the option to buy tickets online (or at local grocery stores, I believe), but we waited to buy them once we arrived at the ticket stand.  The traffic and the mass of people as we entered suggested it would be crowded, and crowded it was!


For those of you who have never been to a renaissance festival, you might have heard stereotypes of festival enthusiasts.  While they are there, often in costume, lots of families and non-enthusiasts attend as well, so if you haven’t been, don’t be afraid!

For those in costume, you’ll find those in handmade outfits… some with wings…


Others in more expensive and formal attire…


There are many stores in which you can buy costumes.  They vary in price, style, quality, and accessories…



There are tons of things to entertain the kids (young and old)!



Children Catapults! (harnesses and trampolines)


Elephant and camel rides…


Lots and lots of games…


Paint Your Own Pottery (This is called Raku Pottery based on the way it’s fired after painted.  The Husband and I did this last year and had a lot of fun.  You can’t wait until the end of the day, however, as it takes a handful of hours to be ready.)


and a Petting Zoo!





There are many stages with shows occurring all day long…



And what renaissance festival would be complete without a joust?



Of course, we were looking forward to trying the food! The range of food was quite large and many were not what you normally would think of as renaissance or festival food.  There was soup in bread bowls, pizza, desserts, and many others.

We tried the fried mac n cheese on a stick and the chik n mac on a stick (a chicken finger with fried mac n cheese).  While the Husband enjoyed his, I did not enjoy mine as much as I think I did last year 😦


Later on, I tried the corn on the cob (at the same stand as the turkey legs).  Also disappointing 😦 It left a weird film in my mouth so I threw it out…



I tried a slice of pizza and that was better than the other items.

Just as we were heading out, I was in the mood for something sweet so we stopped at the Monk’s Bakery.  I again went with traditional fair food with the funnel cake.  Unfortunately, this was also a poor choice 😦 It was very thick (almost cake like instead of doughnut like) and luke warm.  The Husband had a chocolate chip cookie which was tasty.  He just had all the luck food wise!


Knowing the Husband would want you to see this, I also include a picture of the carillon, an instrument of 48 bronze bells.  We didn’t hear it played this year, but it is pretty darn cool and amazing!


While the festival was much more crowded than when we attended last year, we definitely had an enjoyable time.  If you find yourself in the Charlotte area in October/November, we recommend you check it out if you have a few hours.  If not, be sure to check out if you have one in your area.  It’s fun for the whole family!


One Response to “Carolina Renaissance Festival”

  1. Jon Kantrowitz said

    Read more about Renaissance Faires at

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