Trinity-St. Michael’s Church plays host to courtly characters
By Mike Lauterborn
(Posted to Fairfield.Patch.com 5/23)
© 2011. All Rights Reserved.
Fairfield, CT – The setting was an authentic recreation of a certain period in time when princesses, knights, fairies and jesters were all the rage. On closer inspection though, you might notice that the tankard of grog held by the jolly friar was a can of root beer and those were Adidas sneakers on the young princess’ feet.
With a big “Huzzah!”, the Renaissance Faire, sponsored by and held on the grounds of Trinity-St. Michael’s Church at 554 Tunxis Hill Road, went ahead Sunday afternoon, drawing local residents and parishioners in to enjoy facepainting, hair braiding, storytelling, period dancing, a puppet show, moonbounce and food.
Event chairperson Carole Frawley, a vocal music teacher at Fairfield Woods Middle School and church parishioner, spoke about how the event came about. “I do a medieval acting/music class called Madrigals, with my 8th graders,” she said. “I knew I had all the actors and resources in place and suggested to the church that we conduct a renaissance-themed fundraiser. This also serves as a neighborhood get-together letting people know we’re here as a community servant for outreach activities. The grounds here, with all the stone work, archways and bell tower always seemed so suitable to me for this type of event, which we hope will become an annual affair.”
Six 8th graders from the school were on hand, in period costume, to help draw attendees and conduct the activities. “I tried to incorporate turkey legs into the menu,” said Frawley, with regard to her attempts to make the event as genuine as possible, “but everyone said ‘kids running with bones, uh-uh, not a good idea.’”
Frawley revealed some challenges the church had been undergoing, which made the fundraiser all that more critical. “We’re a very intimate congregation, with about 50 members,” she said. “Due to funding issues, we had to go to a part-time priest, Father Cox, who comes in every other week to conduct services. On the alternate Sundays, we have a visiting priest from Bridgeport. This is a beautiful church and a neighborhood anchor and we would love to have more parishioners, particularly younger families, to reinvigorate and carry on the church.”
Frawley said they hoped to break even with the event and that the fact that one of the parishioners covered the cost of the moonbounce rental took some of the pressure off.
The teens that were participating were thrilled about the Faire. “I’m a dancer so I love performing,” said Morgan D’Andrea, 14. “This is very exciting and it’s fun to dress up. With a medieval theme, you have to be more creative. They were crazy back then.”
A parent of one of the teens, Regina Sachakov, of Fairfield, spoke to the thrill factor. “My daughter Sharon was very excited about today and dedicated to being here,” she said. “She likes to entertain people, and serve a good cause at the same time.”
“Friar” Earl Dugan, a parishioner, agreed with D’Andrea. “It’s definitely fun to dress up for the day, but also to see the kids enjoy themselves,” he said. “This is a great way for the church to let the community know we’re alive and well.”