Lower temperatures in South Florida also herald the return of another local tradition, the Florida Renaissance Festival, affectionately known as the Ren Fest. Now in its 23rd year — pause to feel old, Rennies — the Ren Fest will be returning to Quiet Waters Park with its ye olde (if not historically accurate) fun. There’s the jousting, the hawk demonstrations, the lusty washing wenches and their raunchy show, and of course the Splatter Time Players, who perform the muddiest rendition of Beowulf known to mankind. This year, there will also be some new acts.
Cast in Bronze is a “hauntingly beautiful” musical performance composed of 35 bells. If animal acts are more your speed, Cirque du Sewer is the world’s only girl and rat circus performing feats of balance with her trained vermin. The rats jump through flaming hoops, complete obstacle courses, and join trainer Melissa on her slack rope for a death-defying finale. This is not your typical weekend entertainment. Guests are welcome (nay, encouraged) to come in costume, so check out ye olde Instagram account flarenfest if you need inspiration. (Don’t be shy; geek is chic.)
The Florida Renaissance Festival opens Saturday and runs every weekend through March 15. Each weekend is themed: Swashbucklers & Sirens Weekend is February 7 and 8; Time Travelers Weekend is February 14 to 16; Wenches Weekend of “Bodacious Bodices” is February 21 and 22; Voyage to the Orient is February 28 and March 1; Dragons & Wizards and Thrones, Oh My! is March 7 and 8; and Kilts & Colleens, St Patrick’s Day Weekend, is March 14 and 15.
Admission is $21 for adults and $9 for children ages 6 to 11. Children 5 and younger are admitted free. Seasonal passes are available for $65, and group ticket rates are also offered. Quiet Waters Park is located at 401 S. Powerline Road, Deerfield Beach. Visit ren-fest.com, or call 800-3-REN-FES.
Sat., Feb. 7, 2015