While browsing the papers for all the sale ads on Black Friday, my husband chanced upon a FREE COUPON to the Charles Dickens Christmas Fair at the Cow Palace in San Francisco. Regular price for adult entry is $25 - pretty steep, I thought.
I've always wanted to go to fairs like this where participants are gloriously garbed in period costumes. The coupon, however, was only good for one admittance. So we drove around town looking for newspaper box. Do you know that you can hardly find one nowadays - with the majority of people opting to get their news online? We drove around and around, to spots we knew had newspaper boxes. Until we almost ran out of gas and pulled up to get gas. Then my husband remembered that gas stations used to sell newspapers too. And voila, we bought a $0.75 papers for the chance to get the $25.00 admission free. We did good right?
Here's what the fair is all about, source here.
The bustling streets of London, immortalized for all time by the mighty pen of Charles Dickens, form the living backdrop of your excursion into Christmas Past. You are a living part of a Victorian Christmas card come to life!
Come wander the lanes of Victorian London, as the glow of twilight settles upon the city, with the scent of pine boughs & freshly baked scones floating in the air and the sound of carolers and holiday merrymakers accompanying your stroll.
Enjoy some of the photos I took. I was in Dickens heaven - a real treat for an anglophile like me.
We were driving down to the central coast for a post-Thanksgiving get-away cum hubs birthday treat, but a short 3-hour visit to the fair was first on the agenda.
What a Dickens welcome!
Upon entry, you'd be at the Grand Concourse.
The Cloak Check - leave your coats here for a fee.
There were a lot of things going on, stages all over, this one shows some singing. Really good singing too.
An accessories cart.
Rowdy drunk ladies on the streets.
The mannequin on the window is alive. This was a big hit with attendees. This window and the one next to it are not without any photographers taking a shot. [This is my entry for this week's Window Views and Doors too.]
Another stage, another show.
We had haggis. Like most fairs, food are overpriced here. We got a small - very small - cup of eggnog for $4 and we smirked at Starbucks for the $4 venti, right?
People in costume talking with British accents are all over the fair, like they are going about their daily Victorian life. This group is posing for a portrait.
As expected the bangers concession has the longest line.
I enjoyed this fair so much - more so because I got in for free. I told my husband the price for admission was set so high because I think they're paying all these people/actors/players. There were so many of them.