From jousting to the marketplace, here are five things at the Arizona Renaissance Festival near metro Phoenix for everyone.

Visiting the Arizona Renaissance Festival and Artisan Marketplace is like walking through a 30-acre 16th-century marketplace.

On Saturdays and Sundays from Feb. 11 through April 2, there will be 13 stages of entertainment with comedy, music, circus performers, dancing, jousting knights on horseback and other mischievous antics.

“As soon as (guests) walk through the gates, they are immersed in another time from the buildings they see to the (2,000 costumed) characters walking around interacting with the patrons,” Sanja Malinovic of festival public relations says.

Flaming whips, falconry and a traveling carillon


Renissance festival fire-whip performer talks about the festival. Video by Courtney Pedroza / | The Arizona Republic.

Dozens of entertainers will perform each day, including Adam Crack the Shipmaster, who holds multiple Guinness World Records. He creates music with his whips, explodes soda cans and works with flaming whips.

Enjoy the sport of falconry or Cale the Juggler, who entertains with comedic fire juggling, fire breathing and world-class stunts.

Festival-goers can experience a rare traveling carillon, a unique musical instrument featuring 35 bronze bells. It’s the only musical act of its kind in the world.

Don’t miss the Green Man as he travels the village. This man/tree is hard to spot as he progresses with quiet dignity.

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Try a crossbow

Thom Selectomy has a sharp wit and cutting humor in his comedy and sword-swallowing act that’s fun for the whole family.

Crowds cheer on their favorite knights in the 5,000-seat arena of champions during the three-times-daily jousting tournaments. When the jousts are over, audience members can visit the Royal Stables to meet the champions.

Rides and games abound with bow or crossbow target shooting, paintball battles, ax throwing and a climbing tower along with rides like the world’s largest rocking horse and other sorts of spinning and flying contraptions for kids of all ages.

Marketplace and treats

Browse through the marketplace that offers a variety of unique merchandise and merchants making their wares. Vendors offer jewelry, clothes, leather goods, lotions, metalwork, musical instruments, pottery, candles, books, weaponry, woodwork, body art and fortune telling.

And there are plenty of places to stop and eat such treats as roasted turkey legs, steak, roasted almonds, sausages and a variety of spirits, too.

Details: 10 a.m.-6 p.m. Saturdays and Sundays, Feb. 11-April 2. 12601 E. US Highway 60, Gold Canyon (free parking). $24, $21 seniors 60 and over or active/retired military ($11 dependents of active/retired military), $14 children 5-12, free children under 5 (tickets discounts available at Fry’s and online).

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