Pennsylvania Renaissance Faire

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Pennsylvania Renaissance Faire
Genre Renaissance fair
Dates August – October
Location(s) Rapho Township, Lancaster County, Pennsylvania, Lancaster County, Pennsylvania
Inaugurated 1981
Attendance 250,000[1] (average)
Area 35 acres (140,000 m2)
Stages 15

The Pennsylvania Renaissance Faire is a Renaissance fair occurring over 13 weekends from early-August through late-October on the grounds of the Mount Hope Estate and Winery in Manheim, Pennsylvania.[2] In 1980, the Estate was sold and converted to a winery.


In 1980, a two-day jousting festival called the Pennsylvania Renaissance Faire was held in the winery parking lot to attract visitors. The event proved popular, and expanded in the following years.[3]

In 2009, the Faire was held on a 35-acre (140,000 m2) site with 90 shows performed daily on 12 stages, hundreds of costumed characters, and a recreation of a 16th-century English village with authentic Tudor buildings. Musical performances, Shakespearean plays, and other acts were offered, twenty-three "Royal Kitchens" served food and drink, and Renaissance merchants were on-site.[4] The Swashbuckler Brewing Company was founded on the grounds in 2000,[5] and its product is available at the Swashbuckler Brew Pub.[6]


The Faire's music and storytelling have been praised by the Pennsylvania Department of Conservation and Natural Resources Little Buffalo Performance Center, and, in 1998, the Faire was named one of the top 100 motorcoach-accessible events in America by the American Bus Association.[7]


As a privately owned business, the faire is not required to report revenues to the public. In a 1998 interview, the owner, Chuck Romito, revealed that "Gross sales for wine purchases and tickets for shows at the Mount Hope Estates--including Christmas, Halloween, Roaring '20s and other theme performances--hover around $4 million," while the faire's expenses were about $2 million.[3]

As of 2008, American Renaissance festivals were much larger in scale than their European counterparts. Consuming History specifically mentions the Pennsylvania Renaissance Faire for its high attendance, along with the Maryland Renaissance Faire, which draws 225,000 visitors over three weeks, and the Bristol Renaissance Faire, which reached a peak in 1990 with 400,000 visitors in seven weekends.[1]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ a b De Groot, Jerome (2008). Consuming History. Taylor & Francis. p. 120. ISBN 0-415-39945-9. 
  2. ^ Odesser-Torpey, Marilyn (2008). Insiders' Guide to Pennsylvania Dutch Country. Globe Pequot. pp. 222 to 223. ISBN 0-7627-4786-2. 
  3. ^ a b "Period fun at the Renaissance Faire doth maketh the bottom line strong". Central Penn Business Journal. 1998-07-03. Retrieved 2009-08-05. 
  4. ^ "29th Annual Pennsylvania Renaissance Faire". Pennsylvania Department of Community and Economic Development. Retrieved 2009-08-05. 
  5. ^ Bryson, Lew (2005). Pennsylvania Breweries. Stackpole Books. pp. 121 to 124. ISBN 0-8117-3222-3. 
  6. ^ "Swashbuckler History". Swashbuckler Brewing Company. Archived from the original on June 8, 2009. Retrieved 2009-08-23. 
  7. ^ Neville, Erin (2000-09-08). "Pennsylvania Renaissance Faire an educational experience out of class". The Daily Collegian. Archived from the original on 2006-09-04. Retrieved 2009-08-04. 

External links[edit]

Coordinates: 40°13′36″N 76°25′50″W / 40.22666°N 76.43047°W / 40.22666; -76.43047