25 years of metal, maces, merriment
Armour, swords, shields, pikes, palfreys, knights, squires, varlets and wenches are the stuff of medieval fantasy.
Contingents of men and women wearing chain mail and hauberks will converge on the Levin Showgrounds for the Saturday, February 11, 25th anniversary of the Manakau Medieval Market.
The market’s Di Traynor said organisers had ’’pulled out all the stops’’ for the milestone birthday bash - with the emphasis on ‘‘bash’’.
‘‘For the first time, competition for the Pacific Cup will bring a hard fighting, full contact element, while the Order of the Boar will run the ‘Nua Cup [short for Horowhenua], which is a horsemanship skill contest.’’
In the past, the heavy metal battlers in full armour came to provide entertainment. Now Traynor said, with places up for grabs on the New Zealand team for the Battle of the Nations event to be held in Denmark in May, the serious male and female warriors will be fighting to impress.
‘‘We have seven re-enactment clubs - including the Red Ravens from Palmerston North. There are two period horse clubs, and a mass of non-combat period reenactors decked out in the finest of historic styles as well as a large period tent village.‘‘
Medieval Market committee member Wade Cashmore said re- enactment groups from all over New Zealand are keen to be at Levin for the annual event, including four full contact medieval fighting teams.
Some 40 male and female fighters will be competing for places in the New Zealand team during single combat bouts, as well as during three-on-three, and five-on-five fighting.
Entry to the Levin Showgrounds is $5 for adults while their little rapscallions come in for free - see the Manakau Medieval Market Facebook page. Proceeds go to assist local clubs, community groups and schools.
A knight rushes to attack during a battle reenactment at the Medieval Market.