The smell of hot dogs and cotton candy filled the air of the Juneau Masonic Community building where Juneau community members dressed in their finest medieval attire gathered to enjoy a blast from the past.
The first-ever Juneau Master’s Faire took place on Saturday in the parking lot and inside the Juneau Masonic Community building with medieval-themed booths and activities open to the public. Featured booths included the Society for Creative Anachronism battling in medieval armor, tarot readings and face painting. The event was a collaborative effort from the Order of the Eastern Star, the Juneau Rainbow girls and the Society for Creative Anachronism.
Community members of all types came together, some came prepared dressed in full costume, and others just enjoyed the event in their blue jeans. People had the chance to build their own swords, have their fortunes told and watch intense combat reenactments put on by the Society for Creative Anachronism.
“We just want people to have some fun,” said Sorcha Hazelton, the fair coordinator. She said it’s great to see the fair finally happen, as it was originally planned to happen back in 2018, but due to unforeseen circumstances and then the pandemic, it had to be postponed until now. The collaborating groups decided this year would be a good time to try it out as public gatherings are becoming safer, and because they wanted to celebrate the Juneau Rainbow Girls’ 100th year anniversary as an organization.
Hazelton said she was happy with the number of attendees that came, as they didn’t have any expectations of how many people would come to the event or even know what it was. Order of the Rainbow for Girls is a nonprofit service organization for youths.
“I think in Juneau we definitely have people who just want to wear a fun costume, and Juneau doesn’t have anything quite like this,” she said. “It is our hope that the community enjoys it and we can make it bigger.”
One of the booths included in the event was the local live-action role play group Shire of Darklodge Cross, a sector of the Amtgard of Alaska organization, that hosted sword and archery battles, though the sheriff of the group Zach Eberhardt said it sounds more intimidating than it really is.
“The swords are made of foam and the arrows have a soft tip,” he said. “We care more about safety than historical accuracy.” Eberhardt said he was excited to see an event like this happening in Juneau, and hopefully expose their group to more people in the area. When the group first heard of the faire being planned, “we wanted in.”
• Contact reporter Clarise Larson at email@example.com or (651)-528-1807. Follow her on Twitter at @clariselarson.