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- Photo by Matthew Sikorski
Michigan Renaissance Festival
Through Sept. 30; 12600 Dixie Hwy., Holly; michrenfest.com; Tickets start at $20.95 for adults, $12.50 for children.
Kicking it back to 1600 AD for its 40th year is the Michigan Renaissance Festival, where all are invited to let their freak flags flyeth. The thematic Holly-based festival known for its elaborate pageantry, rivalry, revelry, and royalty is expected to draw upwards of 280,000 visitors. The 17-acre village hosts 17 stages as well as reproductions of Renaissance shops, taverns, and, of course, a castle.
In addition to the festival mainstays, like full contact jousting, a bevy of artisans, and massive turkey legs, this year's roster includes a Battle Axe Pub, daily Bow Blast archery tournament, and Triumph of the Elements — an interactive, all-day, puzzle-filled adventure quest.
The seven-weekend event boasts a new theme each week, including Highland Fling, High Seas Adventure, Wonders of the World, Shamrocks and Shenanigans, and Harvest Huzzah, and will conclude with Sweet Endings — a chocolate and Shakespeare hybrid celebration.