Who's Guarding Your Gate?
By The Numbers: 2016 Week Seven
The sun came out, the temperatures cooled, and the patrons descended on the festival in droves. Combined with untimely railroad maintenance, equipment failures and the start of a holiday week combined made the seventh weekend one to remember!
Before I talk about the attendance, a disclaimer:
The thoughts and opinions expressed herein are solely those of the author unless otherwise indicated. Information presented is based on first hand observation and wholesale hearsay. No supposition of actual confirmed fact or reality should be construed from the writings herein except as they pertain to the mental state of the author.*
If you were at the festival all weekend, you know both days were busy, but you probably thought Saturday was the busier of the two. I have worked the front gate of the Texas Renaissance Festival for 28 years now, and I’ve seen crowds big and small and I thought so too. There’s a chance it may have been. During the busiest part of the morning the ticket scanners we use at the front games stopped working correctly. The rep from the ticket contractor had spare equipment on hand, and quickly swapped it for the non-functioning set. He assures us this had no effect on the tally of tickets, but since the total tickets counted seems much lower than what people experienced, some will continue to doubt that assentation. In any case the 36 thousand number is the official attendance, barring further announcements from Texas Renaissance Festival management.
Many schoolchildren are out of school, and many people take the whole week off work, it may be that Sunday really was much busier than Saturday was. Without a doubt it could have been even busier still except for the huge traffic snarl in Magnolia. The railroad that passes through there decided it would be a good time to perform maintenance on the crossings there, and so traffic was constantly stopped even though there was not train. (Several trains did come through, which always does a number on traffic). Many people turned back before they ever made it to the festival.
Hopefully things will run smoother for final weekend. The festival is on track to break its overall attendance record, and I’d like that to be a good thing.
|2016||Clear, High 62°, Low 43°, 48% Humidity||Clear, High 65°, Low 35°, 51% Humidity|
|2015||Rain then Partly Cloudy & Breezy, High 66°, Low 43°, 78% Humidity||Clear, High 58°, Low 30°, 73% Humidity|
We were promised a cold front just in time for the weekend, and for once the weather forecast was spot-on. We had amazing weather for a festival, though it might have been a little chilly for wearing a kilt. I had to scrape some frost before coming to work on Sunday morning. The front gates are in the shade all day, so it was cloaks and gloves all around for the Beefeaters, but in the sun it was quite pleasant. I’m sure the weather had a lot to do with the number of people came out, (or tried to come out), to the festival both days.
Crowd, (and personal) favourite Celtic Christmas for the final weekend, can’t wait to see you there!
See you at the gates… Until then, ‘Fare thee well!’
Sir David Falstaff
Captain, Texas Renaissance Festival Beefeaters