The Oregon Country Fair is a local legend, the first being held in Veneta, Oregon in 1969 as a school benefit, and for a time was billed as a Renaissance Faire. The Grateful Dead played there in 1972, and since then it's been host to a great number of live and varied musical acts, with an annual attendance of about 50,000 over a 3 day period. There is a strong focus on the environment and localism. It's really an amazing sight, with a large meadow for the music, various theaters, and a huge number of crafts booths throughout its wooded setting. These pictures may help give a sense of the style of the place and people you'll find there. This year it was July 10-12, so this is obviously a very belated mention, but it's worth noting for next year if you live in the Northwest U.S. - I highly recommend checking it out.
Faerieworlds 2009 is happening this weekend here in Eugene, Oregon. Again, a bit late to post about it, but it's a yearly event. The focus is "mythic music" and arts and crafts. Lots of costumed visitors in attendance adds to the playful atmosphere. I've never been to this one as the musical styles you find there usually aren't my favorites, but if you're drawn to celtic and medieval inspired music, you might love it.
Finally, here's one you can still attend and plan for this year: The Shrewsbury Renaissance Faire near Corvallis, Oregon, this September 19 and 20.
"Come be thee blythe and merry at the Renaissance Faire! Just 15 miles and 500 years away from downtown Corvallis. Here enchantment awaits young and old alike as jousting knights and noble steeds clash on the tourney fyld while minstrels, troubadours, jongleurs, dancers and bards fill the lanes with delight.
With over 125 artisan stalls and 1,000 costumed players, visitors can browse the village for unique hand made goods and one of a kind treasures while surrounded by Renaissance revelry and entertainment. Eat, drink, and be merry, for food purveyors are on hand within Friar Tuck's Forest, and children delight in games and adventures.
The only Fair of its kind in Oregon, this exciting event offers an educational interactive adventure in history, welcoming families and children. Modeled on the merriest of elements from the times of Shakespeare and Elizabeth I, and set in the historic renaissance of 1558 to 1603, here all the Faire is a stage, and everyone a player!"
I hope to get out to this one next month and bring Josiah, my eight year old (irregular) Labyrinth Lord player!
Inspiration for this post provided by Chgowiz's recent entry on the subject.