Fun Fact: Attention Lords and Ladies! Visit a 16th-Century English Village in This County.

The Maryland Renaissance Festival in Anne Arundel County is the second-largest Renaissance festival in the United States.

The Maryland festival was first organized by Minnesota lawyer Jules Smith Sr. and was modeled after a Renaissance-themed Minneapolis festival that he had previously invested in. After the Minneapolis fair (now known as the Texas Renaissance Festival), relocated to Texas in the mid-1970s, Smith sold his shares and organized a similar festival in Columbia, Maryland. The festival was first held for four weekends in 1977 and drew 17,000 visitors.

Today, the Maryland Renaissance Festival is permanently located on 25 acres in Crownsville, Maryland, and attracts 280,000 visitors a season. You can visit the recreated English Tudor village from late August to mid-October and take in jesters, jousters, knights, live music, and activities (including competitions of Maryland’s state sport, jousting)!

Do you have a fun fact to share about your county? If so, please send it to Allison Valliant to be featured in MACo’s weekly Fun Fact on Conduit Street.