Sample 1840s frontier life at Rendezvous Days in Coupeville

Until there’s a time machine, history is something we study.

But one way to experience American history is to visit Rendezvous Days this weekend in Coupeville.

This is a family-friendly, pre-1840 living history experience, with camping, games, archery shoots, knife and hawk contests, blanket trading, competition shoots and the requisite “talkin’, braggin’ and good times,” according to a press release from the Central Whidbey Sportsmen’s Association, which has held this event for the past 20 years.

The shooting part of this event is limited to registered Rendezvous campers and visitors. The “Rondy” offers various types of black powder and archery shooting. All archery is done with traditional bows only.

The show welcomes “new pilgrims and tenderfeet.”

All types of period costumes are worn and all types of characters, from mountain men and buckskinners to fur trappers, make it to this annual trek on the 20-plus acres of the Central Whidbey Sportmen’s Association clubhouse and shooting range, which has room for primitive and modern camping.

There are also fun competitions with plaques awarded for Best Dressed Man and Woman, Furthest Traveled and Best Camp.

Traders’ tents will sell beads, leather and cloth clothing, early American cooking utensils, blacksmithing items and blackpowder guns and supplies.

In addition to blackpowder shooting events, tomahawk and knife throwing, there are also children’s games.

The Rendezvous runs from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. today and Saturday and 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. Sunday at the Central Whidbey Sportsmen’s Association clubhouse, 397 Safari Road, Coupeville.

The event is free.

For more information, check www.cwsaonline.org and click on the Rendezvous button, or call Chris Eliasson at 360-675-7122.

Theresa Goffredo: 425-339-3424; goffredo@heraldnet.com.

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