Shake Your Blue Feather

By Ursula the Widow

For the Pennsic Independent

Merriment filled the dance pavilion Tuesday night as the Blue Feather Ball returned to Pennsic.

Originally a gathering of Clan Blue Feather, the ball has grown and now welcomes all manner of folk. Joshua the Imperfect said, “We get GLBT people, straights, and families. We have people here who’ve been coming to Pennsic since Pennsic IV.”

Clan Blue Feather is an inclusive group. “A member is anyone who says they are a member. We have no chieftain,” Joshua said. The clan started 18 years ago and “has always been a place for everyone to feel welcome.”

Master Phillip White of Ansteorra taught dance prep classes before the event. He was a model of how to enjoy the evening, dancing with grace and verve.

Those who went in search of oddity would have been somewhat disappointed; the majority of those present were tastefully garbed gentles performing period dance. Several wore baronial coronets.

The ordinary conventions of dance calling were used; one member of each couple was designated the lady and the other the gentleman. Both same-sex and mixed-sex couples enjoyed the dancing.

THL Adele Defontaines expressed pleasure that the amount of dancing at the ball had grown since the establishment of the Dance Pavilion. She praised the dance floor and noted the amount of work that had gone into creating and maintaining it.

The household of Caer Cynin decided to attend in coordinated garb. All the gentlemen wore parti-colored black and white, some with red accents. As a group, they appeared elegant.

Other costumes were less restrained. A shirtless gentleman wore a pleated kiltlike garment of silver brocade with Road Runner trim at the waist and a mesh umbrella hat. Lord Quincy was dressed as a Pharaoh. The eyeliner, bare chest and bright jewels of the outfit suited his slender youth.

A graceful young lady in Gothic black corset, ruffled skirt and off-the-shoulder lace blouse who would have been welcome at any party watched as a poised damsel in a blue taffeta gown and leather mask ornamented with peacock feathers sailed past.

Belly dancing outfits and thigh high boots were to be seen, though thankfully not on the same individual. Each participant appeared to have put much thought and care into his or her attire.

Prizes donated by Pennsic merchants were awarded to ten “people who had wonderful garb,” Joshua said. “Our motto has always been, ‘Don’t wear your best garb; wear the garb that makes you look your best.’”

Some of the “Australian Six Pack” served at the feast. These gentlemen of Lochac were auctioned at Vlad’s and bought by Clan Blue Feather.

Two of them acted as serving wenches, two were breakdown crew after the ball, and the remaining two were expected to don loincloths and move a pile of firewood from one location in Blue Feather camp to another.

Lord Andreas Reinhardt, a member of the Six Pack, poured drinks at the ball in the Viking luau outfit he had worn to an earlier party.