As a young boy, Michael Brazelton wished he had lived during the Middle Ages, a time when kings and queens ruled the land and being chivalrous wasn't an option.
Now Brazelton, along with a few friends, is attempting to form a Brainerd chapter of the Society for Creative Anachronism, an international club that celebrates the medieval period.
Brazelton had been involved with the organization years ago before he moved to Brainerd in 1995. His 8-year-old daughter Cheyenne was just a baby when she attended her first SCA events, which can include anything from full-out wars with more than 20,000 people dressed in medieval garb to feasts attended by various royalty. They recently went to a tournament in Moorhead.
Cheyenne already knows the proper terms to use when she addresses kings and queens or counts and dukes. SCA members research and develop personas, along with creating their own garb. They can earn their way to greater titles by winning awards in fighting or the arts and sciences or by working on behalf of a kingdom.
When Brazelton lived in southern California, he belonged to the Caid kingdom and served as a Baronial officer. Now a Heraldic officer, Brazelton and his friends hope to build a Shire in the Brainerd area. They eventually would like to host their own tournaments and weekend events. Unlike Renaissance-type festivals, SCA members live the lifestyle of the Middle Ages when they gather together, rather than dressing up and entertaining visitors. The nearest SCA club is Rockhaven in St. Cloud.
About seven months ago, Brazelton overheard Steve Anderson talking at the Eclectic Cafe in downtown Brainerd about his interest in a SCA club. The two men started talking and decided to form their own. There are nine members so far, including Josephine DiLuzio, Brainerd, her husband and their two children, James, 13, and Lindsey, 10.
"It's awesome," said Lindsey. "It's fun. You get to wear dresses a lot."
"It's extremely family-oriented," Brazelton said of the SCA club.
"We sat down as a family and chose to join as a family," said DiLuzio. "I think we'll be spending a lot more time with our kids. We'll be going away for a day or weekend events. It's something that if they don't like it, they don't have to do it."
The family has been creating their own medieval garb, buying a few clothing items at the Renaissance Festival in the Twin Cities, an event they've attended for years.
"What you put into it is what you get out of it," said Brazelton. "I never wanted to be a prince or knight. I just wanted to be there."
Brazelton said people of all occupations are involved in the SCA. They all share a passion for the time period.
An organizational meeting of the Society for Creative Anachronism will be 7 p.m. Nov. 18 at the Eclectic Cafe basement, 717 Laurel St., in Brainerd.
For more information, contact Brazelton at 855-1032 or firstname.lastname@example.org. To find out more about the SCA, visit its Web site at www.sca.org.
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