Popular Iowa festival to expand this May

The 23rd annual Iowa Renaissance Festival & Gathering o’Celts will expand its grounds this year to create more room for large living history demonstrations and games of skill activities.

It will run on all three days of Memorial Day Weekend from 11 a.m. to 6 p.m. May 24-26. It takes place at the pastoral and shaded Middle Amana community park in the heart of the Amana Colonies.

This year will also see an added performance space and additional artisan merchants, along with several new food stalls. All of the novelty foods, drinks and treats booths will return, along with the beer garden.

The hi-lights of the entertainment roster will be Joust Evolution’s latest equestrian arena spectacular, Clann Tartan’s large outdoor museum & living history village, three children’s shows including the Jester Puppet’s “Punch & Judy” show which earned ‘Best New Act’ at the festival last year, the Blue Rose Mermaid in her pond, two new celtic bands – Clearly Guilty from Kansas City and Silverthorn from eastern Iowa, the living statue performance artist Katelyn McBurney, Have Court Will Travel royal entourage, Shattock Schoole of Defense and Sons of the Mist.

Added to the games and activities roster will be the public participatory sword fencing challenge, DaVinci’s bubble machine and a treasure hunt.

One of the featured aspects of the event are the 60 artisan crafts merchants who will be demonstrating their skills and offering for sale unique items that usually can only be found at a Renaissance Faire.

The Iowa Renaissance Festival, known as ‘Iowa’s Best Family Fest’, has grown into a regional event drawing repeat patrons from neighboring states.

Admission will remain $10 for adults, $6 for kids from ages 6 to 13 and free for children 5 and under. Parking is free. All tickets can be obtained at the entrance gate.

For location and direction information go to www.amanacolonies.com. For details about the festival see the new website layout at www.iowarenfest.com or contact greg@festint.com 641-357-5177.