A hands-on art workshop that opens with a bash recalling the raucous merriment of Medieval times will return to Long Beach for its 25th year with a new name and an emphasis on cultural diversity.
The Brass Rubbing Medieval Arts, formerly known as the London Brass Rubbing Center, has taken place at St. Luke’s Episcopal Church, 525 7th St., since 1986. This year’s run will be from Wednesday, Oct. 26 to Saturday, Nov. 19.
The workshop attracts children and adults in organized groups, as well as individuals and families who can drop in and choose from among 100 facsimile plates to create their own ready-to-hang artworks depicting 14th- and 15th-Century historical figures such as crusader knights and ladies, mythical animals, religious icons and more.
New this year are Mayan tablets from the Bowers Museum in Santa Ana and a set of tiles reflecting the five major world religions.
Also added are new hues of paper and waxes to spur the creation of unique cards and small nook-size wall pieces.
“The idea is that people coming here for 25 years may not have any more wall space, so we’re looking at encouraging the creation of small gift items made of different materials,’’ said Rose Mary Thompson, chair emeritus.
Group rates for the experience that includes a docent talk, demonstrations and materials are $6.50 per person. Material and rubbing costs for individuals are $5 and up.
The tradition of English teas served as an add-on experience and charge continues. The teas will be offered from Oct. 30 to Nov. 19. Normally offered only to groups, the center will accept reservations, on two Sundays only, for as few as two individuals.
Workshop reservations can be made by email to firstname.lastname@example.org. The same address can also reserve a traveling crew that will bring the brass-rubbing experience to schools and groups.
The Oct. 15 kick-off event, The Festival of Medieval Merriment, places a new emphasis on children’s activities, such as a puppet show and arts and crafts in which children can create their own coats of arms on play versions of shields and swords, as well as a “castle-storming” using a catapult to lob bean bags.
Children’s activities begin at 4:30p.m., while adults will gather beginning at 6pm in the church courtyard for appetizers, music played on early instruments, gypsy dancers and an 8pm repast.
Tickets are $10 for adults, with children under 12 free. A family rate of adults and children over 12 is $25.
Group hours and English teas will be offered from Wednesday to Saturday, 9:30am to 3:30pm and for drop-in members of the public, Thursday through Saturday, from 11am to 4pm. Groups of eight or more can be accommodated on Sundays from 1:30pm to 3:30pm.