Old West Festival

Have you heard of the Old West Festival? It was Twitter friend @katiberz who pointed it out to me, and then I didn't stop hearing about it for weeks.

I'll jump right to my recommendation: I think you should go if you have children, but don't expect it to be a festival of Ohio Renaissance Festival caliber. (Gun pun?)

It helped that I won free tickets online-- it might have been difficult to justify the $20 it would have taken Dan and me to get in. If we'd had children with us, it might have been another story-- I felt there was a lot more for kids to do, including a pretty sweet-looking train ride, a covered wagon ride, a puppet show, lasso demonstrations, a prize-winning bull to take pictures with.

As for adults, I had a difficult time engaging. There were some good music acts-- I have a special place in my heart for bluegrass, which helped-- but the little shops were all either crazy-expensive goods (leather chaps) or cheap throwaways (plastic sheriff badges), the shows were all very kid-focused (a magic show, a medicine show), and there just wasn't much to do once you'd heard your fill of country songs played on banjo.

Oh, Dan would never stand for it if I completely failed to mention the "gun fight"-- which again I was wrong to assume would be the Old West equivalent of the Ren Fest's joust event. Instead we all huddled around the saloon to witness 5-10 minutes of the worst acting this side of the Rio Grande. Not exactly something to plan your day around.

Dan and I enjoyed a tin mug full of homemade root beer, but after about an hour we were ready to head home. If you have kids, they'll have fun-- this coming weekend the festival closes, so bundle them up and head down SR 32. If not, maybe skip this one and hope they keep improving upon it. I think there's a lot of promise for the Old West Festival, if it continues to grow in the years to come.


Anonymous said...

I couldn't disagree more! For less than half of what the Ren Fest costs I thought it was an exceptional value. It is certainly geared for families, but I enjoyed live music on two different stages, the lasso show, the melodrama and saloon show. That's a lot of entertainment for only the cost of a movie. I thought the gunfights were fun. Not intended to be recreations of wild west bloodshed, but rather some loud fun with some bad jokes thrown in. I say go and have some fun at one of the few affordable events around town.

redrabbit said...

Thank you so much for your rebuttal! I'm glad you enjoyed the Westival, it just wasn't my cup of tea. I still think I'd go back (with kids in tow) some day, but the value just wasn't there for me this time.

Erik said...

For someone thats on a budget, this was perfect for me. Ren Fest is nothing to what it was a few years ago, the guy that runs that cut so many things, yet its still really expensive. Old West Fest is more on my budget. Sure, its a little more kid-friendly, but theres something for everyone. Please keep in mind this is only its 2nd year and its still growing.

redrabbit said...

I'm glad you had a good time. My preference for Ren Fest may be mostly for personal reasons, but I'm entitled to my opinion too. :) I look forward to seeing how Old West Festival grows-- I'm sure I'll be back in the future some time.

Erik said...

Glad to hear it :) This is something that is good for Ohio. The people that run it are from this area. If it grows that means more jobs for local people if they need to build more things, etc. etc.

Jenny said...

wow! I grew just down the road from this place! Seriously, like half a mile on Cobb Rd. I've never heard of it before!

redrabbit said...

I'm sure they'll be back next year-- check it out!

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