Holiday Gift Idea: Medieval Times Dinner & Tournament
By: Krista Bainbridge
Posted: Dec 10th, 2016
This holiday season treat your family to an evening of fun, banter and food…with their hands! Medieval Times is the type of family theater dining experience that cannot be missed and right now you can save on tickets with this special code (MT3629 through February 2017!)! My family and I were able to head to the Chicago castle for a special evening of food and tournament as we watched knights joust for sport and then eventually to defend their realm and the honor of the princess!
The magic of Medieval Times starts when you pull up – your kids (ok, fine – the adults, too!) will be amazed at the architectural wonder that is Medieval Times! As we drove past on the freeway (just outside of Chicago) – the girls were delighted to see a castle and even more excited to learn we would be going in to explore!
When you head into the castle (be sure to stop and take photos – there are beautiful areas to do so AND so many details to catch!), you will have the opportunity to upgrade for a small fee to the royal seats if you did not purchase them ahead of time. I highly recommend this! By sitting royal, you get preferred sitting (now, there are no bad seats in the castle, however, if you want a chance to catch a flower and swoon at the knights, this is the way to go!). You also get a cheering section towel and flag to help cheer your knight and neighboring realms to victory.
During this stay, we were seated with the Black & White knight. Now this is important – you have your section and things get intense as you cheer your knight on in feats of prowess on his horse, jousting and sword battle! I love how the crowd really gets involve and the kids are standing and cheering wildly to really promote their knights well-doing! Throughout the arena you can hear the different realms chanting and cheering for their knight, all-in-all, very exciting!
Some fun facts we learned about Medieval Times tournaments:
- The knights perform in authentic armor AND use real titanium swords during each performance (that is what creates those “sparks” you see!)
- Each and every shield (that survives!) has to be repainted before each show because they are battle-worn!
- During the jousts, the knights (really the horses!) can reach speeds up to 20 MPH! WOW That’s fast in a small space!
- Just like the Middle Ages, all the knights at Medieval Times start as squires and spend time training with the weapons, learning about the care of the swords and learning to care for the horses and proper riding technique as well!
While you cheer on your knight, you have a great group of wait staff delivering a delicious meal that you eat as though you were in the medieval time period! That’s right…WITH YOUR HANDS! From dragon’s blood (a tasty tomato soup that you drink right from this metal bowl!) to dragon’s teeth (corn on the cob) and finally baby dragons (chicken) – this feast will fill you up! The bar wench will make sure you have what you need drink-wise (the souvenir chalices are pretty awesome, if I say so myself!). Pro tip for visiting the castle: bring cash to tip your wait staff – they are excellent and gratuity is not included in the price of your ticket.
After a thrilling show – families can head out to the castle area to shop in the sourvenir shops, take photos in period clothing on a green-screen and meet all of the knights, royalty and even the bad guy for photos and fun! You can also take some time to mosey over and check out the beautiful horses that Medieval Times cares for and showcases throughout the tournament.
Be sure to follow Medieval Times on Facebook and Twitter! And let me know in the comments if you’ve been to Medieval Times and what knight you cheered on!