Medieval chivalry and armored tournaments are not dead, but alive and thriving. Ventfort Hall Mansion and Gilded Age Museum will host the second annual Ventfort Hall Medieval Faire at the historic mansion in Lenox on Saturday, October 9 from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m.
Organized by Ventfort Hall and the Western Massachusetts chapter of the Society for Creative Anachronism, the day’s events will include exciting displays of armored combat every hour on the hour; equestrian demonstrations; medieval arts, crafts and clothing; strolling troubadours and musicians; as well as exhibits, food and other demonstrations. Re-enactors in armor and period costumes will take part in the action. Based on the success of last year’s Faire, the event this fall is expected to draw several thousand people to the Berkshires tourism destination of Lenox.
Jeffrey Folmer, Executive Director of Ventfort Hall said, “Although the Gilded Age and the Middle Ages were centuries apart, there are a number of parallels and our English-style Manor provides the perfect backdrop for this event. We aim to teach people about history in fun, engaging and exciting ways and it doesn’t get much more fun, engaging and exciting than this!”
Heading the day’s programs is Jeffrey Mann, since 1983 a member of the Society for Creative Anachronism, one of the world’s largest medieval living history organizations. Mann’s specialty is the study of the evolution of armor through the Middle Ages including, how it is made, and tournament combat. Mann has attained the rank of a knight and master armorer within the reenactment organization. For over 20 years, Mann, his squire and retainers have taken their interest and knowledge of medieval life to schools, nursing homes and scouting organizations, bringing the Middle Ages alive.
Mann states, “Our lively presentation helps sort fact from fiction and explain how many of our modern customs evolved from then till now.”
Advance tickets are $20 for adults, $10 for 5 to 17 years of age, and free for children 4 and under and include admission to the mansion/museum. “Day-of” tickets are $22 and $12 respectively. “Picnics on the Porch” will also be available. For further information, call 413-637-3206 or visit Gilded Age. Ventfort Hall is located at 104 Walker Street in Lenox.
An Official Project of Save America’s Treasures, Ventfort Hall Mansion and Gilded Age Museum offers tours of the historic mansion, as well as lectures, concerts, teas, theater and other programs. This elegant Jacobean-Revival Berkshire “cottage,” listed on the National Register of Historic Places, is open to the public year-around and is available for private rental. Built in 1893 for George and Sarah Morgan (sister of the financier, J. P. Morgan), Ventfort Hall has undergone substantial restoration, which continues.