October 11 - November 30
9 a.m. - 8 p.m.
21778 FM 1774
Along with pumpkin patches and hayrides, an autumn visit to the Enchanted Forest of the Texas Renaissance Festival has become a tradition for many Houston families and Houston actors. "Many families have been coming out here for generations," says Cory Brock, Director of Marketing. "Some performers have been out here for decades and take pictures with the same person every year, so it is heartwarming to see our visitors grow up with us."
Brock tells ParentsPost.com that the Texas Renaissance Festival is expecting to host more than a half million guests over eight weekends this fall - its 40th season.
The festival grounds are in Todd Mission, which is about an hour away from downtown Houston. A 55-acre park is transformed into a sort of Renaissance Era theater with more than 400 professional actors waiting to engage kids and parents. The actors stay true to character for the entire eight weekends. Families can interact with kings, queens, pirates, fairies, musicians, artisans and other period characters. They can experience what life may have been like around the 16th century through the live performances, jousting, feasting and other entertainment. They can watch artists such as candle makers, blacksmiths and glassblowers demonstrate their crafts.
"The Texas Renaissance Festival is a very family friendly place for kids of all ages to visit. Kids really love all the street performers, stage shows and food but above all they love the games. All the games are fully interactive and the crowd is part of the fun as well," says Brock. The festival features dozens of human-powered rides and games, in keeping with the Renaissance age celebration.
Brock also notes that in these modern times, parents especially appreciate the historical shows. "Parents and kids of all ages can sit with each other, laugh at content acceptable for all ages and bond - unlike at home when parents cringe or change the channel when unsettling content comes on TV."
Some new attractions of the 2014 Texas Renaissance Festival include a Falconer's Stage, added games and rides, and remodeled artisan's quarters. Improvements from last year include expanded roads to ease traffic congestion and new campgrounds amenities, including showers.