Monday, August 10, 2009

Being a Reenactor Takes Dedication

This weekend, I am attending a Civil War reenactment in Mason City, Iowa. While putting a list together of things I'll need, I got to thinking about the reenactors themselves. Many travel all over the country to attend reenactments, which generally take place from March through November, and participate in an average of two a month. These are dedicated folks, to be sure, for they invest a lot of their time, money, and energy into such events. In many instances, entire families get involved. Checking out costumes and uniforms on Ebay, I saw that they cost hundreds of dollars, and by the time you throw in authentic shoes, undergarments, weapons, etc., the cost can add up into the thousands. On top of that, these reenactors drive for days to participate,(some toting cannons behind their trucks), camp out all weekend, usually don't have access to running water, and have to tolerate those nasty wool uniforms.

Some would find it ludicrous that these "Civil War junkies" are so obsessed that they would pursue such a hobby. But I say, more power to them. Many of the soldiers are actually retired veterans who enjoy reenacting so that audiences can see what it was like back then to be in the army. Teaching living history is educational and fun, even if it means passing out from heat stroke on the battlefield. Now that's dedication!

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