It’s looking a wee bit rough out there, isn’t it?

I debated for a long time about how best to write this blog entry. We’re all going through some tough times right now. Most of the people I know are motivators, preaching the tenants of Keep Calm & Carry On as they livestream teaching their children how to bake bread or singing songs to their grandkids every morning. That’s what Rennies do. Come hell or high water when things get bad we fall back on what gives us joy in the first place. The strumming of a guitar, the clack of knitting needles, the smell of rising yeast, and the clarity of spring rain factor into the well being of us all in troubling times.

You may be wondering how you can help festivals, crafters, and performers during this time, or you may just want to bring some of the faire into your own home as you practice social distancing. We have some recommendations for you:

Livestream performances on Digital Ren Faire

By now we’re all finding ways to cope. The Digital Ren Faire Facebook page is offering a platform for people to watch faire performers who do not have a faire to go to. They’re presenting livestreams and performances from some of the faire circuits best-known artists and singers so that everyone can enjoy the experience from home. I just watched Giacomo the Jester & The Lady Victoria the other day and their music was just as inspired and talented as in person. I’m really happy people are getting together so quickly and finding ways to help one another while we all weather these strange times.

Shop the Online Marketplace at Faire Relief 2020

Faire Relief 2020 has reached out to create an online marketplace for the independently owned artisans and crafters who had to pack up shop when their faires closed. I could scroll for hours and gaze at all the lovely, handmade creations. These are people who put their hearts and souls into reviving dying trades and in some ways, it feels like this is their moment to shine.

Donate to RESCU Foundation

RESCU Foundation is always at the ready. You can always donate through their website but their Facebook page is your best bet for current updates as to their plans. At the moment RESCU is working diligently towards innovative means to continue to raise money for those in need of medical services. I’m a pin carrying contributor and I have attended their auctions at ORF in the past, so if you know that the RESCU Rally you were set to attend had to be canceled, you can still donate through their website & watch Facebook for more opportunities as they become available.

We look forward to seeing you again face-to-face!

I can’t tell you the amount of comfort it brings to see my friends playing with their kids as they livestream a new recipe. We’re planning Dungeons & Dragons sessions over video conferencing. We’re picking up new hobbies, sitting down to read that book we’ve wanted to read but haven’t had the time to. I don’t want to downplay the stress everyone is under. But I also don’t want to lose sight of the opportunities that exist within this strange, liminal time.

Now is when we learn the most about ourselves as people and as a larger community. Mr. Rogers is oft-quoted as telling people to “Look for the helpers.”, and I found them quickly midst the plethora of ren faire folk reaching out immediately to friends and family asking “What do you need?”. Without fail, I have found this group to be the quickest to crack a joke or provide a metaphorical shoulder to cry on during a time of crisis. They reach out in any way possible, not just to those within the faire family, but to everyone who needs an excuse to sit and laugh for an hour.

In the meantime, take this chance to look back at the 2019 season of the Ohio Renaissance Festival Youtube Page and celebrate with us once more!

As of writing this, our gates are still set to open the first weekend of September 2020 so get your garb ready to go.