Make merry at Montana Renaissance Festival

Armored knights, belly dancers, sword swallowers, wizards and jesters converge June 1-2 at ZooMontana

New & Notable
The Knights of Epona bring full-armored jousting to the Montana Renaissance Festival.

Welcome, Lords and Ladies, to the Montana Renaissance Festival, June 1-2 at ZooMontana in Billings. Revel in the atmosphere of a 16th century European country faire during the largest event of its kind in the region. Explore the bustling marketplace. Mingle and interact with costumed characters and enjoy their endless merriment and mayhem.

The renaissance festival hosts the Knights of Epona in full-contact armored jousting tournaments at 11 a.m. and 4 p.m. Saturday and 3 p.m. Sunday. Watch gallant knights on horseback defend their honor until the last man is left standing.

Parades are on tap at noon both days, photos are available with the unicorn, and Priestess Wendy weds couples or renews vows in the Sensory Garden.

The lanes are bustling with storytellers, musicians, singers, dancers, and villagers while the air is filled with the scents and smells of foods from the Renaissance period. Feast like Royalty on juicy roasted turkey legs, royal Scottish eggs, steak on a stake, and more. Visit a pub and quench thy thirst with a flagon of ale or a goblet of the King’s own mead.

Enjoy belly dancers, sword swallowers, aerial acrobats, and other performers on three separate stages. The main stage and indeed, the entire community of Billingshire, is brimming with bards, jesters, sword fighters, wizards, poets and other merrymakers. But beware of raiding barbarians!

Performers include Alterna Cirque, the Black Gypsies, Tesseract Dance Collective, Chaste Treasure, Butte Magic, Earthshine, the King’s Bard, Barrow Burn Band, the Billings Ceilidh Fiddlers, and Hypsy Conflux Belly Dance, The Royal Pains, Czestekov Sisters’ Sideshow, and Minstrel Urbaniak.

Visit the royal beastiary and meet all the beasts of the kingdom.

The faire is open 10 a.m.-6 p.m. Saturday and 10 a.m.-4 p.m. Saturday. Admission is $7-$15 per day or $25 for a two-day pass. Call 406-652-8100 or visit