We went to the Sherwood Forest Renaissance Fair (near Austin) yesterday, and had an excellent time. It was a great day, kind of cold in the morning but after that it warmed up just enough. The site is large and mostly wooded, and the trails through it are more suggestions than actual pathways, and there's so much room to wander around it never feels crowded.
We got there right after it opened and went and sat in the Hookah Bar and drank ginger chai and listened to one of the bands warming up. (It's basically a large tent set up on a platform, with a view of one of the main stages, with tables and chairs and rugs and cushions to sit on the floor, and also a drinks bar with all sorts of coffees and teas. Later in the day, once people start smoking hookahs, it's fun to be waiting for your drink and watch people who have never seen a real hookah bar in person walk in. It's sort of this growing incredulity, like "Oh my God WHAT IS GOING ON HERE oh look, they have cappuccino.")
This is the view from the Hookah bar
This is an older view of the front part, I don't think I've ever gotten a good picture of the whole thing, at least that I can find.
Food is a huge part of this fair, and they have some really good food, a lot of which is actually made on site, instead of being made earlier and heated up in microwaves. The steak on a stick place cooks steak and crepes to order, right there in front of you on a big fire. I had a mini loaf of bread and a mini chocolate cake shaped like a rose from the bakery, and a free sample of bread pudding with honey mead syrup, and a beef and mushroom crepe with potatoes and feta and pesto. We were too full when we passed the Jerusalem Cafe, which had kebobs and hummus and falafel and smelled absolutely wonderful.
Most of the stuff for sail is artisan crafts, and we bought handmade soap, hand lotion from a goat farm, a couple of spice mixes, grains of paradise in a really pretty bottle, a handwoven shawl-jacket just made on the loom in the tent, honey from someone's backyard in Austin, and a tie-dyed t-shirt, and Troyce bought me a carved bone moon-face.
Here's a few pictures. I have some more at the other tagged posts:
There are occasionally Weeping Angel problems at this fair.