Pirates invade Renaissance Pleasure Faire this weekend in Irwindale

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Beware!!!! Thar be pirates thar! And crown and country save ye if ya cross the likes of these scurvy pirates!

As you can tell, I spent the last weekend at the Renaissance Faire at the Santa Fe Dam in Irwindale. And you can’t help but get into the spirit of things when you’re surrounded by damsels, wenches, lords, ladies, buccaneers and knights.

After a few mugs of ale, you actually begin to believe that you’ve been magically transported back to medieval England. At least that’s my story and I’m sticking with. Besides, I was driving!

Long Beach residents are crazy for pirates. It must be our nautical background. The annual Pirate Festival by the Belmont Pier is a real blast, with or without cannon.

So buckle on your cutlass and tighten that corset because it’s pirate weekend at the Renaissance Faire. Aye, and there will be plenty of grog and good fun for everyone in the family.

Why not enter the costume contest? You can sign up at the guest services booth at the top of the food court before 3:15 p.m. You know you want too!

Contestants will gather for a toast in the food court from 3:30 to 4 p.m. While these scurvy dogs and curvy lasses brag about their latest conquests, anonymous judging will take place.

Then the motley group will gather for a photo before the winners are announced at 5 p.m. Contests will be held both Saturday and Sunday.

If you’re more of a knave, the Fools Guild Parade will be held on Saturday, April 22. Of course, there will be plenty of fooling around at the coronation of the 2017 King of Fools. I should fit right in, watching their crazy antics throughout the day.

I was pleasantly surprised by how much entertainment was available. At one time, I counted 10 different shows on the 13 stages. It was hard to choose which one to attend.

Then, there’s also the grand parades, including the royal procession featuring good ole’ Queen Elizabeth. And don’t forget the Queen’s joust, where shining knights compete for Her Majesty’s favor!

The Sky Kings Falconry show was very interesting. I was astonished when these birds of prey swooped low over the heads of the audience. Talk about up close and personal! And the host was extremely informative. Hats off to him, as well as the birds if you know what I mean.

Here’s a short list of some of the acts available this weekend, April 22,23.

One Man Romeo and Juliet

Shakespeare’s greatest tragedy is condensed to six characters in 45 minutes for non-stop comedy and interactive hilarity. The audience is divided up in to Capulets and Montagues, so you are a part of the action. With lightning fast character changes and ridiculous sock puppets, the show will enrapture old and young, from the bullwhip intro to the thrilling finale!

Seraphim Arabesque Ensemble

From across the ocean of fire, the Silk Road carried them, like the desert D’jinn they were born of the sand. Blending music and dance from throughout the Middle East these performers will take to you on journey to exotic and ancient lands. The rhythm of the drums is infectious, the melody of the Oud will enchant you, and the dancers will make your heart race.
Sit back and enjoy as they invite you behind the veil of the harem.

NEW! Sound & Fury

Sound & Fury is a vaudeville-nouveau trio, which presents original comic genre parody plays. Using frequent audience participation and utter destruction of the ‘fourth-wall,’ Sound & Fury makes their works light & accessible, and non-threatening to a modern audience with limited attention spans. They have entertained over 950,000 people live in the last 21 years, and have a devoted following of fans (the Furies), who range in age from 12 to 80. In 1996 they began to perform improvised sketches onstage to entertain patrons at the Renaissance Pleasure Faire. In 1998 they began touring the world, and they haven’t looked back, because objects in mirror are closer than they appear.


NEW! The Tragical History of Dr. Faustus
(Limited Engagement – April 22 & 29, May 6 & 13)

For what would you sell your soul?  Money? Fame? Love? Christopher Marlowe’s timeless classic explores this theme. A production filled with magic, illusion, pageantry, and music, this enthralling play tells the story of a man who sells his soul to the devil, and the results of his desperate act. Not advised for children due to adult themes and theatrical violence.

Ad Hoc Consort

Throughout the shire you can hear the dulcet tones of our period instruments: recorders, krumhorns, sackbuts & others. Come experience the true sounds of the English Renaissance!

Alli the Muse

Traditional Celtic tunes, songs of the olde world, and whimsical musings on hammered dulcimer and a delightful variety of Medieval and Renaissance instruments. Also, join her for dulcimer karaoke, where you get to be the star and sing along with hammered dulcimer accompaniment!

Brigid’s Daughters
(April 8/9 & 22/23)

These two British sisters are fascinated by the beauty and romance of the madrigals and love songs they sing from Spain, Italy, France, and their English homeland. They long to roam and explore the world and find the kind of love of which they sing. Their angelic voices have been known to capture hearts and delight children of all ages. Perhaps this will help them find a love to whisk them away. … Is it you?

photo: Bob Leggett

 Bugle Biggins

Master Bugle Biggins is a ship’s musician who’s lately retired from a lifetime at sea. So he’s come to Deptford to entertain and amuse you with tales of his adventures, and to enchant you with soulful melodies on the harp and tin whistle.

The Freestylers of Piping

Bagpipes are so much more than amazing grace! Feast your ears on the creative improvisations that flow through the familiar tunes of The Freestylers of Piping and you’ll never think of pipes the same way again.

Freestylers of Piping

Glenn Morgan

A familiar sight at the Renaissance Pleasure Faire for a number of years now, come and find him in the streets of Port Deptford as he shows you his Mastery of the beautiful and enchanting Hammered Dulcimer.

 Patrice Ruane

Patrice Ruane plays traditional Celtic music on a harpsichord, a Renaissance-period keyboard instrument. Rather than hammer the strings like a piano, the harpsichord plucks the strings, giving it a delicate, music box-like quality. Enjoy her graceful, elegant melodies as you stroll the lanes.


Hoping to be the Crosby, Stills & Nash of the shanty scene, Daniel Rover Singer formed QuarterMaster in 2012 with musical director James Briton Hendricks. Traditional songs with updated lyrics and new 3-part harmonic arrangements (written specifically for QuarterMaster) bring a fresh spin to old music about Drinking, Sex, and the Sea. Cap’n Salty and Rover are joined by Stosh, Boots, Arrmen, Padre, Spike and Rufus making up the crew of “The Dodgy Sally.”

Sportive Tricks

A Southern California Folk-Rock Band with a heavy Irish influence, Sportive Tricks take great delight in giving traditional music a strong beat and an interesting twist. They also play many original tunes, both serious & silly.
The band started as performers at the Original Renaissance Faire more than five years ago and now play year round at pubs and concerts in Southern California. Inspired by the rich traditions of Irish, Scottish, & English folk, Cape Breton music, and sea shanties; Sportive Tricks combines traditional instruments with new arrangements, high energy, and a dash of humor for a foot tapping, hand clapping good time. Visit our website!


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