It’s great to hear that plans for the IOW Community Renaissance Festival have been going well.
Smallbrook Stadium will be the venue for over 150 performers who will come together (all as volunteers) for the debut Isle of Wight Community Renaissance Festival on Sunday 24th May.
Community Development Worker, Cora Wade tells us that the idea initially came about from a discussion with another Community Development Worker from The Park Centre, Marcelle Edwards about looking to ways for the community to work together.
They had a massive response to the idea of the festival from which all profits will go to four selected charities: IOW Hospice, IOW Branch of the National Autistic Society, IOW Lions and Ryde East Community Association.
Cora tells us, “The idea was to create a celebration of community, a fun day for the family that wouldn’t cost the earth for those coming along. The support that the project has received has been amazing. The only money that has been spent on making it happen is for the absolute essentials such as licensing, first aid and a bus for the day.
“It has been such an inspiration to see so many people making such a huge effort, not for personal monetary gain, but for the sake of each other and the charities involved. Marcelle and I are extremely humbled to be part of this project, we’re just keeping our fingers crossed for good weather on the day!”
If the weather is anything like today, they’ll be blessed but even if it does rain, there are plenty of marquees planned and entertainment will continue throughout the day.
What to expect
The programme includes; Acoustic Smoke and Mirrors, Lost Years Trio, Penguins have no Knees. There’ll be flute and harp, lute and violin”¦even a recorder consort to add to the Renaissance vibe.
Marc Tuckeys Isle of Wight Ghost Experience will perform sword fights and ghostly tales. There’ll be stocks, a hog roast, skittle run, tug of war and lots more.
Theatrical performance by Ad-Lib Theatre and The Apollo Juniors with their takes on the Canterbury Tales and that age-old story of Georgette and the Dragon (of course)!
Eastern Promise Belly dance troupe, The Oyster girls and the Boyle Odowda Irish dancers will be clogging, shaking and jigging throughout the day – festival-goers will be given the chance to join the belly dancers in a performance on the day through taster sessions.
Mas Exodus will be providing the entertainment in Kids Kingdom, circus skills, foam sword fights, stilts. Bouncy castles will be provided by ‘Party Time’ – There’ll be story-telling and even one or two Renaissance Punch & Judy shows”¦and lots more!
There’ll be village traders selling all kinds of wares, the Mallishag Tavern providing ale and refreshments and merriment by the bucket-load!
Fancy dress is a big part of the event – although not compulsory, certainly encouraged. Costume workshops have been held over the past two months and Masqueryde in Ryde have been busy preparing costumes to hire for the day. Costume will also be provided on the day for photo-opportunities. There are lots of ideas on the website for outfits to fit the day and prizes, which have been donated by a number of Island businesses, for the best costume.
Tickets for the event are £6 adults and £4 children. Organisers invite festival-goers to bring their own picnics for the day, although food and drink will also be available on site.
A bus service will also run throughout the day to ensure safe travel to and from the site. The time-table will be released on the website and on fliers and posters.
Please support this fantastic event – the charities it has been created for and the people who have put the time and effort into making it happen.