8 reasons to bring the family to the Georgia Renaissance Festival

Georgia Renaissance Festival 

With only two weekends left, you still have time to make it to this year’s Georgia Renaissance Festival. I’ve lived in Atlanta over 20 years, and this was my first visit. Wow! Have I been missing out!! Don’t worry about bringing the kids; it’s easy and fun and perfectly suited to them. Here are eight reasons why you need to rearrange that calendar and get to the festival!

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1. Amazing costumes. You’re encouraged to dress the part, in your Renaissance regalia. No outfit? No problem! You can purchase fabulous costumes on site for all ages- even rent them right outside the gate. We saw many families that looked like they stepped right out of 17th century England. Others wore modern clothes with special touches like fairy wings, headdresses, or wooden swords. Even if you don’t want to dress up yourselves, a visit to the festival is worth every penny just for the people watching.

2. Special Themed Weekends. Each weekend you’ll find a special theme or adventure. This year we saw buy one, get one free, kids free weekend, time-warp weekend and more. There are only two weekends left, with Pirates Invasion Weekend being a fantastic reason to go!

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3. Creative shows. Next to seeing everyone dressed in costume, the shows are my favorite. My oldest even told me days after our visit that Barely Balanced was his favorite show. From acrobats to hypnotists and death-defying acts to birds of prey shows, there is something for everyone. Be sure to pick up a schedule and plan your day accordingly – there is much to see and some entertainers don’t repeat shows. Also, plan to bring a tip for these special entertainers, to ensure they are able to come back each year.

4. Kids under 5 are free. Bring your littlest knights and princesses for free access during the run of RenFest. You medieval minions 6-12 are about half-price.

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5. Free playground. In order to make a complete day of fun at the festival, the kids are going to need a break. No worries! Next to the food court you’ll find a super playground with swings, slides, picnic tables and more. Kudos to the setup team for placing this feature in the shade. Split rail fencing on three sides makes it easy to keep an eye on the kids, while you take in a Steak on a Stick or enjoy a Mead from the bar.

6. Jousting. I must admit, this is the event that evoked our curiosity the most. My oldest was eager to see the knights on horses, fighting for the princess. There is plenty of seating for this popular event, and free with your entrance fee.  For a small upcharge, you can sit near the Queen for an unobstructed view of the fight.

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7. Ships, Barrels and more. Kids will love the rides! Go for a ride in a ship, take a turn in a barrel, or get lost in an old-fashioned maze. The rides are unique, unlike any you’ll find anywhere else…and most of them are man-powered, which is a feat on its own! Each ride ranged from $2-5. We did not encounter any rides or food vendors that took cards. Be sure to bring plenty of cash with you. ATMs are on site, but the lines are terribly long, and you don’t want to miss the rides!

8. Mac n Cheese on a Stick. You’ve probably heard about the festival’s giganic turkey leg, but there is a world of additional food to be sampled, as well. Try Mac n Cheese on a stick, steak on a stick, meatballs on a stick….you get the idea. Our boys loved the pretzels, beef jerky, chicken pot pie and more.

Disclosure: GaRenFest granted us tickets (and tickets for our Events Editor and her family) in exchange for a review on the site. Since we had never been before, it was the best way to give you the scoop. We are so glad we went, and the opinions here are all our own. #keepingitreal

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