Medievel History plays out at Knights Haven

Vol 15. Issue 6, Leduc - Wetaskiwin Pipestone Flyer

Photo: Young people show interest in their heritage, history or simply in stories of medieval Knights and “Damsels in Distress”.

Last December the medieval Day Camp was held at the Wetaskiwin Drill Hall with host and instructors Randy Tribiger, son and daughter-in-law,  John and Katie Tribiger, as well as other members of the Knight Haven society. Out of 33 registrants, a record number of 31 were in attendance and all gung-ho, wide-eyed and ready to do battle in the field or to protect their castle. Thankfully, there were not many “damsel's in distress” therefore not taking time away from brave little “Knights” (to lay down their cloaks for a lady's pass upon watery streets) to pursue such games as “British Bulldog”, sword fighting, archery and medieval weapon demonstrations. The young Knights Day Camp began at 8 a.m. and culminated after 4 p.m..

The morning began with the creative results of  the young registrants designing and stitching their very own medieval tunics. These tunics displayed certain “Order” and colour symbols which would be recognized on the battlefield, as in very early medieval times when even Knights could not read nor identify opponents other than by color and symbols.

It is learned that it took many years for a young boy (and later 'tis said the odd female finagled her way in) to acquire the skills of Knighthood and those chosen were usually the sons and grandsons of Knights. Around the age of 7, a boy would be sent to the castle of a powerful Lord for training and education. From 7 to 14 years of age the young knight-to-be was called a “Page” and learned how to fence, wrestle, of manners and music, served dinner in a great-hall, and in later years received the opportunity to read and write.

By 14 years of age, a “Page” became a “Squire” and assigned to serve one Knight eventually following “his” Knight into battle. A Knight's duty also required him to act with mercy and courage on the battlefield.

Randy Tribiger original founder of Knight Haven some 15 years ago, now along with son John and daughter-in-law Katie host fun and family-oriented events all over Alberta and decided Wetaskiwin was ripe for a children's Day Camp event. Now, Randy, John and Katie (a design media specialist doing most of the PR work for the group) and a dedicated staff travel the highways and bi-ways of Alberta engaging communities to enjoy  and learn of Knights and kingdoms of yore, entailing both the mythic and actual lives of Lords, Ladies, Knights and peasant people. The medieval battleground appears to be a very central focus for those young and old interested in medieval times.

In this thematic reason Knight Haven now hosts, aside from community Day Camps, a weekly “Knight” out at the Fulton Place Hall  in Edmonton every Thursday at 7 pm since Nov. 4th, 2010, wherein gatherings of the clan hold mock battles, sword training, archery and general fellowship interaction.

Knight Haven has become a medieval recreation business highlighting a historical period circa 900 – 1500 A.D. Specializing in the enjoyment, entertainment and education of it's gallant participants and eager spectators. Proven, no less, than at Wetaskiwin's Pioneer Days June 19th, 2010.

Knight Haven also offers hand-made merchandise by Richard of Red Deer who produces an exquisite line of jewelry, medieval weapons and chain-mail. A third generation recipe is employed in the making of their premium, sinfully delicious chocolates and what Lord or Lady wasn't born with a little sin?

With tunic and weapons at the ready young Wetaskiwin “Knights” enjoyed the rest of the morning  in mock battle and instruction in to the finer details of life on a medieval battlefield such as in “Capture the Flag”. After a bag-lunch break eager young Lords and Ladies delved further into myth and mystery as they learned how to defend their castle, sword-fight, discuss with instructors the pros and cons of different medieval weaponry and enjoy rounds of archery.

The medieval Day Camp came to a close as young Knights returned from the battlefields either triumphant or dishonoured, to return to family and everyday sights and sounds; many, by bedtime still with images of battle and sounds of steel, but thankfully minus the odour or horse!

Katie, John, Randy and the Knight Haven Group plan a return to Wetaskiwin in the form of a week-long summer event. I now know a number of young Lords and Ladies anxiously awaiting their return. To check out photos of this great event, click on to www.knighthaven.org.

 

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