The Wars of the Roses
The Wars of the Roses is an annual event held in The Barony of Concordia of the Snows. It is usually scheduled around Memorial Day weekend. It is themed on the historical Wars of the Roses in England, and participants are encouraged to choose which side they are fighting for: the House of Lancaster, symbolized by a red rose, or the House of York, symbolized by a white rose. In years past a third neutral or "mercenary" party was also offered, sometimes symbolized by a yellow rose.
The winning party is determined through points earned from the various activities at the event, including fighting, fencing, archery, bardic competitions, arts and sciences activities, purchases from merchants and more. At the end of the event the side with the most points is declared that year's winner.
Wars of the Roses History as recalled by Toki Redbeard and G. Emerson True
Wars of the Roses Part 2 was born out of an original Concordian event called Cupid’s Bow that was a tourney event held on a local football field. By its third year, it was the largest tourney held by the Barony with fighters from Ostgardr to the Rhydderich Hael (House Elandris) joining in. Using this large fighting event as a base, Countess Tamara fitz Gloucester of the White Boar used this event to build the event we know today. The first Wars of the Roses held in Concordia was, naturally, Wars of the Roses Part 2 as obviously none of us attended the first Wars of the Roses in England! The first five years of War of the Roses were held at the Robbin’s farm in Sheffield (Great Barrington), Massachusetts. That area of Great Barrington was then part of the Barony. Tamara was a friend of Madeline Robbins and her parents' land in Sheffield MA was the first site. More than 200 people attended. The site was simply a large sloping open field bordered at one end by the Hoosatonic River. Porta Johns and dumpsters had to be brought in and the only water available on site was from the Robbin's home across the street where they allowed the SCA to use their outside spigot and garden hose. After five years, the event outgrew the fields and the event was moved to Frosty Acres Campground near Mariaville, New York. The event was held in one section of this large modern campground. The site provided some amenities we’d never had before (eg. multiple water spigots, flush toilets, hot showers, and a kitchen) Despite these new amenities, there were still a number of issues with the site (including safety) that forced the Barony to look for a new location. A Baronial member was working at a private farm site up the road, Indian Lookout Country Club, and spoke with the owner about allowing us to have the event at his site. His site was well known as a location of a large Harley-Davidson rendezvous event. He was happy to have us as he understood what it was like to try and find a site for a group that the public might not easily accept. Our event moved to that site for the next 28 years. Though the SCA did have a good relationship with the site, and it’s multiple owners, after so many years the site was unable to keep up with our requests. What originally seemed like great amenities at one time were becoming less so. The weather at the site was always unpredictable and the Barony knew it needed to move to a new location. Through an agreement with the Shire of Glenn Linn a new site was found at the Schaghticoke Fairgrounds, Rensselaer County NY. At this site Wars of the Roses was able to expand into a much larger area and eventually the site was even used for the East Kingdom 50-year celebration.
A banner was made by Lady Alicia Megan de Montmingelle on which red or white roses have been applied to signify the winner of each war.
Traditionally, the war points included the Tournament of Roses, the Battle of Bosworth and an Archery competition.
In later years, autocrats added more war points with historical battles (Battle of Townton (town battle), etc.
Eventually, war points included non-combat points so that more participants could join in the war effort (Arts/Sciences, brewing, and shopping)
1982-1986 Wars of the Roses II-VI Robbin’s farm, Sheffield, MA along the Housatonic River
1987-1988 Wars of the Roses VII-VIII Frosty Acres Campground Schenectady, NY
1989-2016 Wars of the Roses IX- XXXV Indian Lookout Counry Club, Pattersonville, NY
2017-2019 Wars of the Roses XXXVI-XXXVIII Schaghticoke Fairgrounds, Schaghticoke, NY
2020-2021 Wars of the Roses Virtual - via the web
From the Pikestaff
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