About the SCA and the Kingdom of Ealdormere
The Kingdom of Ealdormere is a regional branch of the international Society for Creative Anachronism (SCA), a non-profit organization which studies and re-creates the Middle Ages. We practice all kinds of medieval activities, such as armored combat or fencing tournaments, feasts, dances, classes and more.
Ealdormere is the sixteenth divisional region (called a kingdom) of the SCA. Ealdormere claims most of the province of Ontario, and it was the first all-Canadian kingdom/branch in the SCA. Our events take place in communities across the province, all year round. Beyond our realm, there are dozens of other SCA groups across Canada that fall under other kingdoms.
What is the SCA?
The SCA was founded as an organization that researches and celebrates what was best about the Middle Ages; things like honour, pageantry and chivalry, without the bleak bits like plague and famine. The SCA recreates European life in the time between the fall of the Roman Empire (600 AD) and the death of Queen Elizabeth I (1600 AD).
Participants of the SCA are from all walks of life and share a common interest in researching and re-creating aspects of life in the Middle Ages. This includes learning period crafts, practicing armoured martial arts, fencing, archery or any other aspect of life in the Middle Ages. To be a part of the SCA, a person need only show up—there are no mandatory requirements for membership dues or expensive equipment, although some enthusiastic members invest a great deal in their gear, clothing, and more.
The SCA has a rich organizational culture and heritage, with customs of our own. Visit the SCA’s Newcomer’s Site for more on our activities and traditions.
What you’ll see at an event
At events, participants of the SCA adopt aspects of medieval life. They may dress to a specific historical period and focus their research on activities or other elements of history in this era.
A typical event held by a local SCA chapter has a variety of planned activities. Some people will don real armour and fight with weapons in a form of martial arts, but practicing chivalry and valour on the battlefield or in a tournament rather than just be competitive. Other people might explore the same through other martial arts such as renaissance-style fencing, or enter in thrown weapons or archery competitions.
Other artistic pursuits can be found taking place around the event hall. Craftspeople work on projects such as calligraphy and illumination, or work on weaving and fibre arts. People also apply their craft techniques to making handmade banners or chairs used in the halls, or in the beautiful clothing people wear in the SCA. Dancing and performance arts are also encouraged. Children’s activities are an important part of an event day as well—the SCA is very family oriented.
Dinner is often a central activity of our events. Most dinners are an organized feast at the end of the day that participants can join for a fee. Feasts are prepared by members of the local group and re-create recipes from the Middle Ages.
An event day creates an immersion experience for SCA participants by adopting the dress and activities of the Middle Ages, and joining with friends and family to share in a common passion for history. The events we hold are for the enjoyment of members and guests, not an audience.
Benefits of participation
Each participant will have their own unique perspective on what being part of the SCA means to them. Many would agree that participating leads to new friends, new skills, and a greater appreciation of what medieval life was really like. As a hobby, the SCA is a pastime that doesn’t end at the door of an event hall. Many SCA members spend many hours at home working on their projects, doing research or supporting the administration of Ealdormere by giving time to running events and other necessary activities for the business of its groups.
When was Ealdormere founded?
The SCA began in California, in 1966, and has been growing in size, both by region and by membership since then. Today the SCA estimates its active membership to be about 30,000 people. The first local group in what is now our kingdom started in Toronto forty years ago, in 1974. Ealdormere’s membership reached kingdom-level in 1998.
Over the years growth in the number of SCA participants in Ontario led to a number of local groups from Ottawa to Sarnia, and many people travel to the United States or other provinces to participate in larger or more specialized events.
Want to learn more?
If you are interested in learning more about the SCA or its participants, we recommend the site below. We are a very friendly group and happy to share what we do with anyone who is interested.
www.sca.org (SCA International)