Trip to the 2016 Texas Renaissance Festival

My fiancée (Samantha) and I went to the 2016 Texas Renaissance Festival Saturday, November 19th and we had a great time. The weather was perfect. A cold front had blown through on Friday, which dropped daytime highs to the mid 60s. Skies were clear and beautiful.

Samantha and I woke up around 6:00 am.  I got my shower, got dressed, and we headed out around 7:00.  On the way out we stopped at the Donut Palace on Hwy 190 in Jasper Texas. When I was working on a tugboat, this was the same donut shop I would stop at on the way to work. The Donut Palace is ran by a friendly Asian couple. I got a sausage, egg and cheese croissant, blue monster and chocolate glazed donut. Samantha got a bag of donut holes.

We headed west on Hwy 190, which took us through Woodville Texas and into Livingston Texas. At Livingston, we turn south on Hwy 59 south until we reached Cleveland. At Cleveland we turned west on Hwy 105. Hwy 105 took us through Cut-n-Shoot, Conroe, Montgomery, and finally to the Plantersville exit, which is 1774.

Arriving at the Festival

Things have changed a lot since the last time I went to the Texas Renaissance Festival. The road going to the festival is not like what I remember. I remember turning right off 1774, then turning left into the festival parking. It seemed like there were a couple of extra turns this year.

Since this is the weekend before Thanksgiving, I was hoping there would not be a “lot” of people there. Weekend before Thanksgiving is usually when extended families get together to celebrate Thanksgiving. Then on the actual day of Thanksgiving close-knit families have their celebration. Boy was I wrong. There were a LOT of people at the Texas Renaissance Festival on November 19th, 2016.

We parked on row 12 then  walked to the entrance.  It seemed like there were hundreds of people going in and out.  There were people dressed up, people not dressed up, all races and colors alike, hoping to have a good time.

Samantha and I did not buy our tickets ahead of time.  We waited for a few minutes to buy tickets, then waited in line to get into the festival.  I was carrying a Maxpedition Noatak and was bag checked on the way through the front gate. The lady standing next to me carrying a backpack was not bag checked. I guess someone forgot to tell the guy about my white male privilege.

We walked in the front gates around 10:30. Three and a half hours to get from Jasper to the festival.

Inside the 2016 Texas Renaissance Festival

Once through the front gates there is a plethora of sights, smells and sounds. As you walk in, to the right side are the food shops, while on the left side are stores packed with all kinds of era items, such as clothes, swords, boots, knives,,, etc.

My favorite show is Cast in Bronze, which is all the way in the back of the festival.

Once on the front gates Samantha and I were ready to get a bite to eat.  We got a Sausage on a stick and a coke.  We wondered around looking through various shops.  the parade was to be at noon and I wanted to be at the joisting arena when the parade came through.   The entrance to the jousting arena has a raised mound, which gives a great place to watch the parade.  We arrived at the jousting arena around 11:40 or so.  We sat down on one of the benches, took a short rest brake, then claimed a spot on the top of the mound.

Samantha and I watched the show from the top of the jousting arena mound, then made our way to the forest.

Parade at the 2016 Texas Renaissance Festival

Sherwood Forest is a nice break from all the hustle and bustle of the festival.  The path winds along a creek where both are shrouded by large trees.  The path brought us to the back side of Sherwood Forest.

We made our way over to “The cloister and the Green.” From 12:30 to around 12:45 we watched a sword show, then went to the Cast in Bronze area and got some seats.

Not my video, but this is what the show looks like.

Samantha and I made our way back over to the food courts, got a cheeseburger, sat down and shared a bite to eat.

We bought a mug with the year on it on the way out. We left sometime close to 3:00. There was so much we did not see, but we were both ready to go. As we left out it looked there were more people arriving then were leaving. Only 3 hours until dark, maybe they were going to see the fireworks show?

After The 2016 Texas Renaissance Festival

Rather than driving back to Jasper, we reserved us a hotel room in Conroe.

We had dinner at Applebees on Hwy 45 just north of Conroe. The food was great and the service was excellent.

The next morning we hate breakfast at the hotel and headed home.  We had a wonderful time and are looking forward to going back next year.