Ideas for the Party Human

VARIATION: Medieval

Posted on: January 9, 2010

     Here is another theme variation for use with the basic Capture-the-Flag Party mentioned in an earlier post.

Guests dressed in medieval costume

Guests dressed in medieval costume

THEME:  Middle Ages, Knights and Ladies–inspired by tales of King Arthur and books like Ivanhoe, by Sir Walter Scott

INVITATIONS:  These will be very similar to the Fantasy version.  Write the message in Olde English lettering (stencils and fonts are available) on parchment scrolls.  Again, assign each guest a character on one of the two teams (Black Knights, Ladies and Hags vs. White Knights, Princes, Princesses and Maidens).  Ask them to come in costume and bring an assigned dish for the feast.  (If  the majority of your guests are good riders and you are going to use horses, let them know in the invitation so they can dress in clothes that will not hamper their riding.)  Tie with a ribbon or seal with sealing wax stamped with a ring, and deliver. 

MATERIALS FOR ACTIVITIES:  These will be much the same as for the Fantasy version:  Large, wooded area; one flag or other symbolic item for each team; maps of the land and/or any other props desired; horses and saddles, if desired; long table(s) and chairs.

FOOD:  The feast should be traditional English fare from the period, such as roast fowl, corn on the cob, savory breads and cakes, potatoes, meat pies, Yorkshire pudding, “Toad in a Hole,” pastries and steamed plum pudding.   Again, serve grape juice or apple cider for drinks.

DECORATIONS:  Similar to Fantasy Version.  At the feast table, a large canopy festooned with ribbons and flags would be effective.  You might choose symbols for each team and put them on flags or signs at each team headquarters.  If you use horses, deck them out with lots of ribbons, and have a place to stake them with feed and water.

 BLOW-BY-BLOW:         When guests arrive, separate them into their teams by their given characters.  Follow the basic preliminary procedure as in the Fantasy Version:  Guests introduce themselves; teams choose leaders; you give leaders flags or other symbolic items (swords, crowns, shields, goblets) and explain conflict between teams.  (Perhaps the Black Knight believes he is rightful heir to the throne and determines to kidnap the Princess and hold her for ransom until he is given the King’s sword.)  Then explain the division of the land and give each team an equal number of horses (if desired). 

            The teams now take off and are given ten or fifteen minutes to set up their domains and plan their strategies.  Imagination takes over until one team captures the symbolic item of the other or a stalemate is called after a specified amount of time.  The guests return to the feast table, sign a treaty and eat the meal while relating their deeds of derring-do.

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