The American Heritage Festival is the largest—and most diverse—living history event in the Western United States, and it takes place less than an hour from Scottsdale at Schnepf Farms in Queen Creek.
Now in its 13th year, the festival features actors portraying frontiersmen, early settlers, soldiers from the Revolutionary War through modern times, and famous Americans such as Abraham Lincoln and George Washington. It will also feature parades, artillery, music, living history demonstrations, food, shopping, and a historic church service on Sunday.
Reenactments of Revolutionary War and Civil War battles on the farm’s open fields are the highlight of this family-friendly festival. After the battles, many of the actors make themselves available on the sidelines to answer questions about their uniforms, camp life, and weapons (they may even pose for photographs!).
This year, the American Heritage Festival is open to school groups on Thursday and Friday, November 19 and 20, by advance arrangement only. Public Day is Saturday, November 21, from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Gates open at 9 a.m. and close at 5 p.m.
For a schedule of the day’s events, click here.
Tickets for Saturday are available at the event for $15 per person (children 3 and under are free). Cash is encouraged, but credit cards will be accepted.
There are a few things you should know before you go. For safety and security reasons, adults are not permitted to wear historic costumes (except for registered actors who are part of the presentations). However, children are allowed to dress up as part of their homework.
Also, no pets are allowed other than trained service animals, and you may not bring outside food or beverages to the festival. Both will be available for purchase.
One last thing…you may want to bring a folding chair to set up in the battlefield viewing area. The sidelines can get congested, and it helps to have a place to sit as you stake your place out early.