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Santee Historical Society invites public to medieval experience

The Santee Historical Society is holding their second annual Medieval Mini Fest at the historic Edgemoor Barn on Feb. 18.

Society Secretary Arli Wolfson said the festival is intended as “our gift to Santee and the surrounding cities” in the form of a fun community outreach project.

“I don’t know that we’re looking to accomplish anything specific with it but nobody in East County has done anything like this. We do hope to be able to raise funds and last year we had some great sponsorships so I am reaching out to some folks again but really, it is just a fun event,” Wolfson said.

There will be knights in shining armor, courtesy of local educational outreach group Chivalry. Today, as well as madrigals sung by the Santee Community Chorus.

“I love the fact that Scott brings a table full of artifacts from Chivalry Today and teaches the kids what was used in the days of the knights, those visuals were very popular last year,” Wolfson said.

Wolfson also said she is arranging for bagpipers to participate and bring a little Celtic flair with an added educational touch of later period visuals.

New for this year: “a guy with a horse because what better place to bring a horse than an old barn,” Wolfson asked.

Like last year, there will be a make-and-take area for kids to make their own crowns and swords, Wolfson said, as well as a new opportunity for kids and grown ups alike to test out their archery skills. There might be a big, wooden catapult on site as well, Wolfson said, a site most modern kids don’t usually encounter.

“This all developed because in the beginning of last year, I was going through some old paperwork and found a printed email from 2009 where someone said they passed by the barn every day and thought it would make a great event venue for something like this. He mentioned Chivalry Today and it all went from there,” Wolfson said.

A 1985 National Historic Register record lists the barn as Edgemoor Farm Dairy Barn.

“Because the barn is on the National Historic Register, the outside can’t be changed so it is pretty to see from the outside but our larger goal is to promote awareness of the only real historic relic left in Santee. We’ve got an early 1900s schoolroom and kitchen set up inside and the displays take you through all the decades and history of the barn and this area. We’d love to someday see the site as the Santee Heritage Park,” Wolfson said.

In the meantime, she and the other historical society volunteers “just want people to come” to the medieval event.

Last year, Wolfson said, they held the event in May thinking the weather would be perfect, only to see temperatures rise to “a freak 95 degrees” which resulted in lower attendance than expected.

“We only had about 200, maybe 225 people last year and we want to double that this year. Everyone is welcome and absolutely, wear your medieval clothing. I just ordered myself a new cloak with a hood,” Wolfson said, just in case it rains.

The Medieval Mini Fest will be held from 10:30 a.m. to 1:30 p.m. at the Edgemoor Barn, located
at 9200 N. Magnolia Ave.

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Source: East County Californian

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