One phenomenon we've witnessed as being particular to Texas Faires -- and most particular to TRF -- is the Ren Fest Clan. This may be something that goes on elsewhere but we haven't seen it much. I think it grew out of the camping culture of TRF in which extremely enthusiastic faire-goers take advantage of an extensive campground and hundreds and thousands of people make faire an ongoing party. Camp has changed a lot over the years and it's lost something I think, but the sense of community that many of us find in Ren culture is there in spades. A hallmark of this is the faire clan.
Essentially a clan is a bunch of people who come together, camp together, party together, costume in similar and complementary ways, and sometimes even extend the community outside of faire. There are a number of clans at TRF including the Drunken Gnomes, Clan Chaos, and our clan, GroggTroll. Essentially it started as a joke between four of us at opening weekend of TRF 2006 -- the same weekend we conceived of Huzzah! -- we like to drink and act like cretins and our clan name would suggest that. Over the past few years, the joke has become a rallying cry, a name for us to all get behind and call our extended family at faire. We all started out as friends outside of faire, and have been going to faire together for years, so it's really just a silly contrivance. But it's our silly contrivance. Much like faire itself.
When a significant number of trolls come together, we call it a Trollmoot (like the Entmoot in Lord of the Rings). At this point some of us are scattered to the winds -- I live in NY, some of us are in Dallas, some in Houston -- so when a Trollmoot happens, it's a special thing indeed. This past weekend was our gathering at the opening weekend of Scarborough Faire. I flew in to town for two days and we got up early and spent a full day out at Faire -- Cannon to Cannon and then some. Much beer was had, much fun was had. I looked at my camera at the end of the day and I had almost nothing but pictures of my friends -- the trolls. The day at faire wasn't about the renaissance, it was about time spent with my extended family doing something we enjoy together.