Monday, March 17, 2014

The Great Dickens Christmas Fair

Image copyrighted by sarnia.8m.comThree months too late, but this just came to my notice. Every holiday season, the Bay Area near San Francisco comes alive with the Victorian era cheer of England with their Great Dickens Christmas fair.

This fair has been in existence for the past 35 years, and it's part crafts fair, part live theater, part reenactment, part environmental theater production, and all parts fun and good Christmas spirit.

The Cow Palace in Daly City is turned into a "120,000-square-foot recreation of London circa 1840. Over the course of five weekends (Nov. 23­–Dec. 22), upwards of 50,000 people" visit to partake of the festivities.

Image courtesy of the British Library"The environment is a clever conglomeration of constructed 'streets' and 'alleyways' with names like Pickwick Place and Petticoat Lane. Shops staffed by vendors in period attire sell everything from antique books to velvet gowns while more than a dozen restaurants and bars serve up a variety of traditional dishes and adult beverages."

All the vendors and costumed actors roaming the 'streets' remain in full character all throughout the day. This adds to the complete immersive experience of Victorian England.

Isn't this just such a cool festival? I hope this year I have the opportunity to go participate.