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Useful Notes / Great Dickens Christmas Fair

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A long-running, immersive San Francisco reenactment event dreamed up by the same people who pioneered the modern Renaissance Fair. The Dickens Fair turns a landmark warehouse into Christmas Eve in 19th century London over the weekends in between Thanksgiving and Christmas. As the name suggests, Charles Dickens and his literary creations (particularly from A Christmas Carol) are featured heavily, but there are also plenty of other sights, sounds and even smells offered in terms of food, crafts, and entertainment. It's basically for people who feel that Ren Faires are a little too far in the past, but ComicCon/Cosplay events are equally too modern/futuristic. That qualifies the Fair as either a tourist trap, or the most fun you can have with too many clothes on...

Learn more about the Fair here.

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The Great Charles Dickens Christmas Fair provides examples of:

  • Culture Equals Costume: Street urchins don't dress like the Royal Family, and vice versa.
  • Dances and Balls: Fezziwig's Warehouse is literally just this, albeit the working/middle-class version of it.
  • Dance of Romance: This is the entire reason why Fezziwig's Warehouse exists in both the Fair as a whole and in its place in the plotline of A Christmas Carol, as it is where The Ghost of Christmas Past takes Scrooge to see his younger self fall in love with and then get his heart broken by his sweetheart Belle.
  • Darker and Edgier:
  • Deadpan Snarker: The "Chairman Obadiah Feltrup" character at Mad Sal's Revue:
    Chairman: "Now, there's one thing at Mad Sal's that is strictly forbidden..."
    Fellow cast member: "Sobriety?"
    Chairman: "All right, two things that are strictly forbidden..."
    Audience member: "What about promiscuity?"
    Chairman: "That's encouraged."
  • Den of Iniquity: Mad Sal's Dockside Alehouse. Might also qualify as The City Narrows and Not-So-Safe Harbor.
  • The Drunken Sailor: Paddy West's band sings classic sea shanties, as well as shilling their own "brand" of booze. Also an example of Seadog Beard.
  • Elegant Gothic Lolita: Younger female guests who want to dress up - but don't want to go the full hoopskirt-and-bonnet route - often chose this as a costuming Plan B.
  • Getting Crap Past the Radar:
    Chairman: "When you tell this joke to your friends at school...and the teacher asks you 'Where did you hear that?!?'...you tell them Fezzzz..i..wiiiiig's."
    • The 2015 Fair added a Sign Language interpreter to several of the performances - including the Mad Sal's Revue, whose veteran cast members were often doubled over in uncontrollable laughter as she signed their bawdy lyrics while maintaining the straightest of faces.

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