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Renaissance Faire: 7 weekends in 16th century

August 21, 2018

There are many great outdoor festivals in Connecticut, not the least of which is the Connecticut Renaissance Faire, celebrating its 20th anniversary as an enchanted recreation of a 16th century English harvest festival that combines outdoor theater, a themed craft marketplace and circus-style entertainment. Think “Game of Thrones” meets “Spamalot.”

It’s also a staple of late summer and early fall in the state, running every Saturday and Sunday from Sept. 1 to Oct. 14, plus Mondays on Labor Day and Columbus Day, at the Lebanon County Fairgrounds in Lebanon (between Routes 2 and 6 in eastern Connecticut near Norwich).

The Connecticut Renaissance Faire made its debut performance in the back of the King’s Inn in Putnam during the fall of 1999. Since then, the event has grown from two stages and a few merchants to become “New England’s Old England” with 12 stages, a marketplace with 80 merchants and food and craft beer. The Faire was held at the North Haven Fairgrounds for a couple of years but moved to Lebanon in 2017 to be in a more rural location.

Costumed performers include kings, queens, fire eaters, singers, jesters and, on horseback, jousters.

“One of the big draws to our show is the jousting,” said Eric Tetreault, marketing director for the Faire, in a news release. “People love to cheer for the knights and see them battling on the field of honor.”

Lebanon County Fairgrounds in Lebanon, 122 Mack Road, Lebanon. weekends Sept. 1-Oct. 14. $15 for adults and $10 for children (7-15). Children 6 and under free. 860-478-5954. ctfaire.com

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