The Jousting Tournament

18 Oct




I’ve been trying to find different activities for one of my homeschooling groups, and then I remembered this activity that I had seen mentioned years ago, and never went to. I went searching for it a month or two ago and I was in luck! They still have it. It’s a Jousting Tournament. This is the kind of oddball event that homeschoolers should be on the lookout for, and take advantage of by going!

This event is a 3-day event from Friday until Sunday. Friday is the “practice” day, and Saturday and Sunday are the actual tournament days. It isn’t an actual “Renaissance Faire” but has a lot of similarities to one, I believe. Along with the jousting they had various other demonstrations, people in medieval garb, and different activities available.

Even though today was a weekday, I was pretty surprised at the turnout. There were a variety of couples and small groups, some mothers or families with small children, and a good amount of school groups. I can only imagine how chaotic and crowded it may end up being during the actual event over the weekend though. I’m glad we were able to go today when it was a slower pace, and with fewer people around.

The Events

The events started with a welcoming ceremony, to basically introduce the knights, and I believe other people somehow involved with the jousting. In the early afternoon, they had the highlight of the event, which was The Jousting Practice. Later on there was a “Birds of Prey” show, a “Skill at Arms” competition, (which, sadly, we missed) and finally a “Romans vs. Celts” demonstration.

The Jousting Practice

Several different knights from different countries were participating. My son and I ended up choosing the same knight to cheer on. It was fabulous. The horses ran at a good speed, and when there was a hit, the lance would often shatter into many pieces, sending a shower of wooden bits everywhere that had to be cleaned up by various people. It was exciting to watch!

At one point, one of the knights was knocked from his horse. He laid there for a few minutes, and I wasn’t quite sure if that was for show, if it was just the routine for such incidents (to ensure safety of the rider), or if hitting the ground was really bad enough to warrant him lying on the ground for several minutes to regain his composure. People rushed to his aid though, and he was thankfully able to get up again quite quickly.

Our pick of the knights seemed to do quite well, by the way. (He wore the helm (helmet?) with the blue feathers in the photo above.)




Romans vs. Celts

Men dressed in the approprate gear for both sides, the Romans and the Celts, gave an small educational talk and short demonstration about the gear and weapons used by each side. They also talked about techniques and the various ways and tools of attack. At the end, the children were offered a chance to learn how, and actually have a couple of attempts themselves, to throw a javelin.


Various Activities

Throughout the event area, there were various stands and tents set up, offering many chances at learning, hands-on activities, and purchasing. My son was able to try on various types of armor, while a man talked about the weight, various pieces, and mobility of the gear. He learned how to play a medieval game called “Cathedral“. He was educated on, and tried playing, a Celtic harp. Also, there were demonstrations on how they made cord, how to make thread, doing basic painting on medieval designs, pottery demonstrations, and blacksmithing.





Overall, this field trip was a hit! Once my son found out where we were going he was excited, and really had a blast once we were there. I loved seeing him hoot and cheer for the knights during the jousting. I was told another of the boys couldn’t stop talking about it on the way home. They learned a lot, and had a lot of fun. I’m sure it’s something they won’t forget anytime soon.

As a homeschooler, be sure to take part in, and make the most of fun, educational field trips that present themselves. Your children will gain a lot through the experience, all while enjoying themselves, and being entertained.



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