You would think that a medieval person would stick out at a fair about the Renaissance. Thing is, it wasn’t about the Renaissance- it was about Harry Potter, LOTR, wikkens, pagans, tribal folks, burners, and… yes, about every social subgroup remotely having to do with period costume. So I fit right in, because as long as you’re friendly and not dressed in Tivas and shorts, you’re “fair folk.”
We were asked to work there about 5 times.
Not sure if that’s a good thing. One potential employer, who spoke in ye olde English for a half hour prior, vented about employees who “show up to get your staff bracelet then say ‘Adios.'”
So the deal is that some faire-folk stay there overnight camping in re-enactment authentic regalia. They have to fight off the homeless who show up around 4pm to claim the areas of the park that are theirs. Also, one fair person told me that several of his weapons were stolen by some GGP Homeless Guy. So if you’re mugged with an epee…
I got in a long conversation with a jouster who ends up training the horses not to be shy of these fly-by-knights (had to) who aren’t too good at jousting and end up continually bonking the horses on the head with their spears.
In regards to other SF street festivals & fairs, there was lots to do instead of just shop. Exhibitions of weaving and metal works, archery, fencing, and constant stage shows every 20 minutes or so. It is one of those things that is mostly about the preparation. But as long as you have a good mead high, it was fun enough, and despite being a “costume police” (is that faire legal? was our running joke) I 1) do not think metal eyelets are period and 2) if you’re into boobs, you really have to attend the next one. Everyone’s lettin’ the puppies out.
Talked to some Czech folks in the beer garden who were a bit upset that us Americans converge every period of European history into “renaissance.” “I have an authentic Gothic costume, but the groups here, they never do anything.” I coudl see some confusion on craigslist if someone posted for a “goth fair.”