You want answers?! You’ve got answers!! The Washing Well Wenches have been a can’t miss show at the Michigan Renaissance Festival for more than 25 years; and anyone who’s seen them will say the same! First getting its start in the late 80’s as a street cast for the Bay Area Renaissance Festival the Wench Show is now a Festival Favorite at more than 34 Faires across the country.
Currently there are 20+ cousins and while the Wench show is performed as a duo, when you get all the cousins together it is called a ‘conwenchion’. Wench-pods have taken some favorite patron groups to cruiseboat-shires, and soon a pub/castle crawl (Halloween 2018), be afraid! When 4 or more Wenches are around, prepare for happy, sudsy trouble!
We were able to convince one of the Wenches to put down her Guinness to answer a few questions from our Facebook Friends.
Have you ever been assaulted by a wife/girlfriend? (Erin Steketee)
“Assaulted? No. A-peppered? Every time. We're well seasoned. Most ladies are grateful for the time off, we're like the squeakiest cleaniest day care center this side of the 1500's. And [Hollygrove] men are all so well trained! We would learn a lot from you [Hollygrove] ladies. We keep asking for a man training class to attend but haven't found one yet. But as the good Brewer says, “Where there's a beer there a way and where there's a way there's always laundry.” Besides we have an excellent catch and release program.”
Laundry of Hollygrove personalities. Give us the T? (Mark Alan Bisanz)
“Like warm socks laundry secrets are the best kept secrets. They rarely let us launder the royal undergarments since that time we put the crush in her majesties' favorite velvet bloomers. But we think the trend may catch on. Our memoir "If This Washpit could Talk" will be released as soon as we learn how to write. Off the record Ded Bob does enjoy a stiff collar. And Lickity Splicity always needs an extra rinse and Acrobellum's wash ALWAYS needs separation.”
How many years has Daphne been doing the show? How many cousins has she had? (Sheryll Richmond Marshall)
This is a question that doth often consume Daphne herself between the wash cycle and the rinse cycle. Laundry is timeless and cousins, like hangovers, seemingly last forever. It all blurs into a ball of love and Guinness and bubbles and laughter. And as long as you separate your mentionables from your unmentionables the truth will come out in wash. Whatever the answer is (25years;) any amount of time in Michigan shire is NEVER enough. Seriously, the Wenches launder at 34 festivals around the country and there are 22 cousins spread about to get all that washing done!”
How many Guinness should I bring you? (Jaclyn Sheldon)
The village alchemist did tell us that humans are 78% water and since drinking water is a danger in the dark ages wenches must be 78% Guinness. So the learned answer would be 78. But since we peasants are not well versed in matters mathematical is ALL OF IT a quantity? Or six. Six will do. Maybe seven. Let's just stick with 78.
Which Wench will be the designated driver? (Jessica Gregory)
In our experience we have learned laundry and driving doth not mix well. Thankfully every home has laundry so a Wench is never far from rest. If all else fails a designated pool boy or a cozy empty keg is not hard to find.
>New skit? (Kristy Haines)
(How very dare you)
We like to change things up from show to show to keep the laundry fresh and clean for everyone. But it's hard to teach an old Wench new tricks, like switching from Guinness to IPA's. As long as you drink enough everything seems new! We never get bored and never know what is going to happen, so we imagine our laundry patrons are always surprised by each show as well.
Most memorable volunteer? (Ian Hartman)
At the wash pit we are always blessed with a wonderful variety of our favorite kind laundry...Michigan men. Who are willing to entertain us all for the benefit of true love. A most noble cause. However....a few super hunky shirtless (men's clothes are half off during Aug/Sept) volunteers do dance in our dreams for eternity... you know who you are!
Am I supposed to remember things? Will there be a test later? Will there be beer after the test? If I take the test twice do I get two beers?
Favorite Michigan memory? (Shannon Sandercook)
Once, 20 years ago, a 40degree rain day, a whimpy cousin of mine refused to go out in the cold. We had put up wench mud slide competition signs up for the end of the day, the [Hollygrove] folk turned up for the event, but I was alone in the rain without a cousin. A gentleman donned a skirt (hers) and performed mud slide wench competition for distance, style, and synchronized down the hill by front gate. By the end my new "cousin" and I were so covered in mud only the whites of our eyes showed... he passed the basket for me, and I cannot imagine how he got into his chariot and went to his hovel, so mud covered was he! DedBob found me hours later, teeth chattering, and carried me in a blanket to my hovel behind the beer booth, actually and ironically saving my life!-True story!
Slipped the tongue? (Brian Barker)
Mother Superior has told us a lady never kisses and tells! Thankfully we're peasants not ladies. Worry not for a wenches health, though. We've had all of our shots, Jameson, Jim Bean, Jose, Captain Morgan. We're thoroughly pickled.
Will you ever change the act so women can get the flower? (Jamie Liss)
Yes, it sometimes happens that way, and we have had boys get flowers for boys and girls for girls and every variation in between!
We love doing all kinds of laundry so you never know! Who knows what the wash pit has in store! Definitely not us. We're not in charge, we just do the laundry.
The Wench Show is an interactive laundry show with flawed but lovable peasant cousins finding love and laughter with their dirty, dirty patrons. Good Clean Fun, Wet, Dirty, Women. Be sure to catch their show each day of the Festival at 12pm, 2pm and 4pm. Don’t forget the Guinness!