From jousting, archery and combat to crafts, cooking and games, Winterfest offers entertainment to watch and activities to try. You can also browse the offerings of our carefully selected merchants. There’s something for all ages.
The information below is from Winterfest 2017, which we leave available so you can see what visitors experienced.
We are planning even more for 2018!
Click the headings below to find out more.
+ Scheduled entertainment
Saturday and Sunday
Saturday and Sunday
10.00am – Winterfest opens
10.30am – Official Welcome and Opening
11.00am – The Winterfest mounted Skill-at-Arms display – Watch the Knights and Ladies demonstrate their skills on horseback, and see who has precision and skill to work with their horses, in sword, spear, lance and more. Joust Field
11.30am-12.20pm – Field & Fight displays – Enjoy the spectacle of historic groups and displays of skill in the combat lists, in fighting with arms & armour, or showing skills with swords, fight skills and drills. Field of Arms
12.00 noon – ‘Medieval Kitchen Rules’ – Come and see some of the skills of a cook in ages past, where you’ll see demonstration and preparation of meals, use of herbs and the skills needed to prepare a medieval foods or feasts. Re-enactors Walk – Huscarls
12 noon (start between 12-12.15) – Historical Equestrian Games Australia will be displaying some of the training both horse and rider go through in gaining the skills used on horseback, with sword, spear, lance and mounted archery. Equestrian Arena
12.30pm – Feldergast the Fool Jester Show – Buffoonery and magic with a medieval flavour. Jesters Court
1.00pm -2.15pm – Field & Fight displays – Enjoy the spectacle of historic groups and displays of skill in the combat lists, in fighting with arms & armour, or showing skills with swords, fight skills and drills. Field of Arms
2.15pm-3.00pm – Birds of Prey – Full Flight Conservation Centre will enchant guests with the free flying birds of prey flight display, demonstrating the skills of a Master Falconer. Birds of Prey
3.00pm – Costume & Cosplay competitions – YOU are invited to come in costume and display your medieval finery, and maybe even win a prize! You can also meet some of Australia’s best cosplayers who will be judging our costume and cosplay, all with a medieval theme! Joust Field
3.30pm – The Winterfest Joust – Cheer for your favourite knight and their horses, with some of the best jousters in Australia as they cross lances in the spectacular Winterfest Joust! Joust Field
4.15pm – The Grand Melee – The final battle of battles! Clubs together to test metal and clash in teams and vie to be the best. Field of Arms
5.00pm – Winterfest Close
+ Entertainment throughout the day
Historical re-enactment groups. See what life was like in past times, from Dark Ages and Viking right through to the 1600s, with a special focus on the medieval period. Re-enactors have a passion for history and love to share it with others. Re-enactors Walk
Feldergast the Fool. Winterfest’s resident juggler, trickster, magician and all round festive Jester will be roaming the crowd and entertaining.
Medieval Archery. Visit the target field and try your hand at archery, with guidance from our traditional archers. Small fee, 10 years and over. Archery Range
Kids’ Corner. Visit our child friendly area, where youngsters can join in with Winterfest’s colouring-in competition, or meet Queen Fairy Jen and experience her artistic talents for face-painting. Kids Corner
Knights School. Ever want to learn to wield a sword & shield? Join in the Knights’ School and have at your friends and foes! (small fee) Kids Corner
Merchants’ Row. Browse and enjoy faire from all sorts of quality vendors with a wonderful array of goods, try exotic foods, or maybe enjoy a bit of lunch from our food providores. Artisans and Merchants
Birds of Prey. Visit the birds of prey with Free Flight Conservation Centre’s display. Learn about the birds. Have your photo taken holding an eagle (small fee). Birds of Prey
Winterfest Unicorns. Come and meet the Winterfest Unicorns. They enjoy pats and having their photos taken with their admirers. Unicorns
Medieval Animal Farm. Make friends with farm animals of medieval times. Kids can have a pony ride (small fee). Medieval Animal Farm
Medieval history shows. Crime and Punishment, or Medieval Medicine: join us for a peek into the past with shows both gross and educational! Jesters Court
Artisan Alley. Discover traditional crafts and skills. See how the artisans make their wares, and find something to take home for yourself. Artisans and Merchants
Archery Combat. Play archery tag in a safe and controlled environment. Small fee, 12 years and over. Archery combat
Medieval combat tournament. Watch full contact medieval tournament-style combat, with armour. Armoured combat tournament
Live action fantasy role-play. Ever wanted to mingle with Orcs, go on a wizard’s quest, or hunt for treasures? Scy’Kadia will lead you into your own story-weaving world as part of LARP, a fantasy world of live action role-players. Live Action Roleplay
+ Winterfest site map
+ Hands-on activities
One of the things that people love about Winterfest is how interactive it is.
For children and for adults, Winterfest offers many opportunities for interaction, whether in conversation with performers, craftspeople and reenactors, or in having a go yourself.
Many people enjoy trying out armour, helmets, and weapons brought by the reenacting groups.
Organised activities include archery, Celtic drumming workshops, and learning to use a rapier. Children (and adults) love to try on helmets and armour and to hold shields, axes and swords. Children have the opportunity to practice their skill with a (safe) sword, to get creative in colouring medieval themed drawings, to sand and decorate swords and shields and other medieval crafts.
Costumes are a feature, and Winterfest is a perfect place to wear something a bit different from the usual. Most people wear some kind of medieval or medieval-inspired outfits, but we welcome all periods, cultures, and styles, including fantasy and interpretative clothing choices. Winterfest also features costume competitions. Cosplay is one category, with other costumes in a different category.
Spontaneous activities can often be seen, when children play with their newly bought toy swords, or follow a performer (who is perhaps on stilts).
+ Winterfest Costume and Cosplay competitions
Winterfest hosts annual cosplay and costume competitions. We hope that we will see more people joining us in costume or character to enjoy the medieval revelry. There are prizes, so come in your best costume and enjoy the weekend.
Cosplay competition – Medieval theme
Whether it be inspired by Game Of Thrones, Lord Of The Rings, or stories from fantasy or history, the cosplay movement is becoming ever more popular for self-expression and design. Cosplay is more than just dressing up: it usually involves taking on a role to pay homage to a specific character or ideal from popular culture. The Cosplay Competition at Winterfest draws the eye with the creative and high quality designs representing a wonderful array of characters.
To enter, all you have to do is to turn up. Entry to the competition is free. Competition entrants will be invited to parade for our visitors and guests. Cosplayers will assemble just before 3pm, after the Birds of Prey show and before the joust. There will be announcements about the competition during the day.
Ideas for Winterfest Cosplay:
Game of Thrones; Lord of the Rings/The Hobbit; Dragon Age; Forgotten Realms; DanMachi; Sword Art Online; Tudors; Dragonlance; Monty Python and the Holy Grail; Skyrim; Vikings; King Arthur…
Sponsors to be announced.
We at Winterfest want to encourage people to come in costume, and have a great time. Coming to the event dressed up can enhance the experience of our guests, by making their visit more immersive and interactive.
The costume competition is for any member of the public who has come to Winterfest dressed up in costume. You don’t need to do anything special. At random times during the day, people who stand out due to their costuming efforts will be given vouchers. It could happen any time, anywhere!
Sponsors to be announced.
+ Merchants and stalls
Winterfest has a wide range of artisans, merchants and stalls for you to browse. Check out the list below to see what’s available.
Artisans and Merchants
Art by Degrees
Blue Willow Crystals
Cast from Dungeon FX
Cauldron of Wellbeing
Count Lazlo Leather Art
Crystal & Terri Soothsayers
Jen’s Sweet Treats
Journey of the Seed
Kathy Berriman Author
Nellie Williams Dresses
Of Science & Swords
Realm of Fire
Richmond Salt Mine
Scottish Accessory Shop
Silver Vixen Archery
The Salami Shack
Tribe of the Fey Folk
White Lotus Henna
Food and beverages
Artisan Bread Basket
Mini Pancake Factory
Spit Roast Gurus
The Frog Connexion
Yans Asian Catering