Black Hills Renaissance Festival offers historic, unique setting in Lead
LEAD, S.D. — It was a flashback in time, as well as a time of fantasy for those that participated in the second annual Black Hills Renaissance Festival.
Festivities began for the Renaissance Faire on Friday and will run until Sunday, where you can find everything from axe throwing, to belly dancers and even blacksmiths.
The idea came to fruition after Contract Coordinator Shareece Tatum was contacted by the Lead Chamber of Commerce to come up with an event to draw in more customers for local businesses.
That led to Tatum’s life dream of a having a Renaissance Faire brought to the Black Hills. Last year, over 1,500 people attended the first festival.
Tatum says that the festivals give people a place to dress up — enjoy history and play a part in fantasy.
“They try to be very Renaissance Period, 1600, you know, William Shakespeare stuff,” Tatum said. “But you’re going to see dragons, you’re gonna see fairies and stuff like that, and we see Star Trek sometimes. So it’s just a little mash of time and space where we can just have fun and get to be the pirates and princesses and kings that we want to be.”
According to the Lead Chamber of Commerce, 50 vendors also participated in the event — selling related goods and services.
Lead chamber officials said that the festival is about bringing more attention to area businesses, but also appreciating a key part of culture in the area.
“Whether it’s the brewery arts, or the bakery arts or just regular arts, we have it here. So it’s always part of what we do to bring in that excitement,” said Leigha Patterson, the executive director of the Lead Chamber of Commerce.
The festival continues on Sunday from 12-5 p.m. at Manuel Brothers Park.