COLUMBIA — The sound of staffs clashing against armor was heard Saturday in Peace Park as members of the Society for Creative Anachronism gathered to recreate the Middle Ages.
The Kingdom of Calontir, a regional branch of the international organization, had more than 100 members present for the event at MU.
SCA is an international medieval reenactment groups that tries to research and recreate the lifestyles and arts of Europe from 600 A.D. to 1600 A.D.
Some practiced their fighting skills for the upcoming Pennsic War in Pennsylvania. Pennsic is one of the society's largest events in North America.
"We're helping some of our fighters gear up for it," event steward Megan Dittmann said.
Each member of SCA chooses pre-17th-century persona, along with a pseudonym, she said. Dittmann's persona, Juliana della Rena, is from 15th century Italy.
In addition to practicing, members attended a symposium in Middlebush Hall to learn about medieval jewelry making, sewing, cooking and more.
Richard Heard, known to Calontir members as Richard DeBleys, was suited in armor, ready to fight.
"I initially got involved for the fighting," Heard said. "It's a very visual thing of what we do, a lot of great exercise, and none of it's choreographed."
Although the fighting initially attracted him, the most rewarding aspect of the society is the sense of community, Heard said.
"It's an incredibly generous group," he said. "We're essentially a big family. We’re always looking out for each other."
The international organization consists of 19 kingdoms, with more than 30,000 members, according to the group's website. The Kingdom of Calontir encompasses parts of Missouri, Kansas, Nebraska, Iowa and Arkansas.
Although members of the group from Columbia meet multiple times each week, this event brought in SCA members from around Missouri.
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