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Animal-friendly events are just *different*
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jducoeur
(As usual for when I've attended something long, I'll be posting some random reminiscences.)

Being held at a 4-H Fairground, SCA 50th Year was just about the most animal-friendly event I've ever attended. It was interesting noting my own reactions: several times during the first couple of days, I found myself going something like, "Oh, come *on* -- you're not seriously telling me that's a service *goat*" before realizing that it wasn't relevant. (The "lap goat" was, in fact, quite popular.) There were animals all over the place -- indeed, Zeus the Cat (from Camelot) held court in the EK History Booth for much of a day, drumming up attendance as people walking past would have whiplash of, "Ooooh -- kitty!"

But the biggest difference was the horses. I suspect this was the biggest Equestrian event in SCA history: the site has a large Equestrian Arena and a *huge* barn, and there were dozens of horses in attendance. Opening Ceremonies were punctuated by several passes of real, no-shit *jousting*. (With breakaway lances to keep anybody from getting killed, but it was still spectacular.) I'll need to remember to update my usual SCA-demo spiel to reflect the fact that yes, there now *is* jousting at least occasionally. (Although it's still not exactly common around here.)

The most magical moment came one of the evenings, though, and drove home one of the big differences from Pennsic. At the War, you learn to tune out the constant but annoying sound of golf carts, from Security riding around. At this event, there was none of that. Instead, one evening just after dusk, Security came riding up *on horseback*. Countess Meggie was practically beside herself with squee at the sheer rightness of it...
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Zeus the Cat (from Camelot)

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Camelot is a fairly large cohousing complex out in Berlin, MA, that was founded in large part by folks from one of my SCA households -- Zeus (as I understand it) lives there...

Yes, he does. He lives with your Protege and some former Stonemarchians.

I grew up in Maryland; I feel that jousting is Right and Proper, and I am glad that there was some.

(For the unaware: jousting is the state sport of Maryland.)

Yes, it was the largest equestrian event ever in the SCA.

I'm truly surprised by the number of active SCA folks in this kingdom who don't know we do jousting when we've been doing it for 13 years and even featured a jousting tournament at a coronation(Kiena & Gregor) a few years ago.

Well, I haven't gotten to many animal-friendly events, especially here in the city. News sometimes travels slowly...

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