Friday, September 19, 2014

Totally Texas -- Joust between you and me, it's a blast

The first time my daughter asked if I’d like to go to Medieval Times for my birthday, visions of The Cable Guy flashed before my eyes. She assured me that she and her then-boyfriend, now-husband had been while they were in college on the other side of the country. And loved it.

My twin grandsons would love it, too, I knew. Besides, my daughter added cunningly, admission is free on your birthday.

Why was I surprised to find out it’s so much fun? Sure, it’s cheesier than a quesadilla, and the dialogue could use some serious updates. But that’s not the point. The point is to watch terrific-looking horses and actors who wave swords and shields around like the cast of Monty Python and the Holy Grail on steroids. The point is to live two hours in a place where you can cheer the good guys and boo the bad guys while tearing a chicken apart with your bare hands.

Besides the expected jousting and sword fights, the show included demonstrations of falconry and dressage.

The kids couldn't get enough of it. And their ever young at heart dad demanded to go on his birthday, too.

Without the birthday freebie, the price would have been $60.95 plus tax and processing fee for each adult in the family and $36.95 (plus) for each child age 12 and younger. (Children under age three can sit on laps and watch for free.) The price doesn’t include tips for the wait staff, who lug around enormous platters of food and soft drinks. Or the many souvenirs the kids will clamor for and staged photos you’ll be tempted to have taken.

The food is decent and plentiful¾ a bowl of tomato soup, half a chicken, a spare rib, half a potato, a dessert (apple turnover on our visit) and all the tea or Pepsi you can drink. My daughter and I had to get takeout boxes to haul off our share of the meal. You can order alcoholic drinks and water for additional charge. A vegetarian meal is also available.

Besides the birthday freebie, the Dallas Medieval Times & Tournament offers discounted tickets at $38.95 for adults, $29.95 for kids through September 30. For ticket information and discount codes, see Educational matinees on limited dates are available for student groups, with topics including elements of theater, horsemanship, falconry, and historical information. See or beg your teacher to call 469-342-555 for more about the matinees.

Outside of the student matinees, shows at Medieval Times in Dallas are 7:30 p.m. Thursdays, 8 p.m. Fridays, 5 and 7:45 p.m. Saturdays, and 5 p.m. Sundays. The you-can’t-miss-it castle is located at 2021 N. Stemmons Freeway, near downtown Dallas.

I had a brief moment of worry about one of my grandsons who is, sad to say, allergic to horses. But he got through the show without a sniffle.
Need more to do this weekend? Try Addison’s Oktoberfest, or the National Championship Indian Pow-Wow in Grand Prairie

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