If you’re planning on going to your first event, there are a few things that you can do to be prepared. First, if there is a Facebook page or a website for the event, you can reach out to the person hosting the event. Most of the time, there is someone whose role it is at event to help out the new people who are attending. This is called the Chatelaine, or Golden Key. They will have clothes that you can borrow and gear that you can use for the event.
Dressing the Part
It is your first SCA event. No one expects you to come in full historically accurate Elizabethan dress. Unless that’s your thing, then you do you! That is why we have Golden Key, so that people may jump right into the event and feel like part of the SCA immediately. People are more than happy to lend out their garb to new people. Garb: that’s what we call the clothing we wear to events. We do not think of them as costumes. It’s all part of the immersion aspect of the SCA. If there is no Golden Key at the event, reach out to the Shire. People have lots of clothing and will not mind bringing you something to wear. There is no need to run out and buy (or make) something for your first event.
Eating at Events
If you’re going to an event, it is a good idea to find out if there will be food at the event. You will usually see two options: dayboard and feast. Dayboard is the term used to describe lunch. Dayboard can be anything from a potluck to a buffet. Sometimes the dayboard is included with the event fee, other times it can be a separate charge. Usually, the event page will let you know, but it is always a good idea to check. Not all events will have a Feast for dinner, but if they do, they are a lot of fun and usually have course after course of good food. Feasts usually have their own fee that is separate from the event fee. Either way, it is expected that you bring your own dining ware to use. For your first event, you don’t need anything fancy. You can use whatever you have in your kitchen at home. Here is a list of what you’ll want to bring:
- Fork, knife, spoon
You will see people at events with more than just these basics: table cloths, candlesticks, cup covers, baskets to carry everything in, etc. Over time, you can look for wooden, pewter, or ceramic ware that fits your persona. Second-hand stores and garage sales are great places to find such things. But, there is no rush.
Is the event you’re going to a camping event? First, do not feel pressured to camp. Even if it’s advertised as a camping event, it’s fine to go just for for the day. If you want to stay overnight, don’t worry about not having period camping gear. Most people use modern equipment, both for their tents and their cooking setup. A few people will spend a lot of time, money and effort to make a very period campsite that looks like it’s from a medieval painting. Don’t feel like you have to reach that level; if period camping is not something that you’re interested in, don’t worry about it. But if you’re intrigued or have questions, feel free to ask – most campers love to show off their accommodations and infrastructure, and it will help you make decisions about your own set-up. As with everything else SCA, you can choose how to use your resources; very little is actually required.
As with anything, if you have questions, please ask! We want you to have a good experience and come back.
(This article was written by Lady Aurelia, and slightly updated by Duchess Marieke.)
Looking for an event to go to? Click here to see what’s coming up on the calendar. Click here for a listing of all the annual events nearby. Already been to an event and looking for more to do to become more involved, check out this page.