Money and organized sports for kids were both in short supply when the Enfield children were growing up.
What there was plenty of on their 200-acre dairy farm in Frederick County was horses.
So between their chores, Ken, Robert and Linda Enfield took up jousting, a sport their father has competed in since his teen years.
"We could milk in the morning, joust during the day, and come back in the evening and milk," said Linda Minneck, now 52.
Today, four generations of Enfields compete in the sport, with five family members in the National Jousting Hall of Fame. Up to seven Enfields are expected to turn out Saturday for the 10th annual joust at St. Margaret's Episcopal Church near Annapolis.
"It's been a way of life for me and my family," said Leon Enfield, 74, the patriarch of the family, who has been jousting since he was 13 or 14. "It becomes a family get-together ... a family sport."
Jousting became Maryland's state sport in 1962, thanks to a bill sponsored by horseman and then-Del. Henry J. Fowler.
But its history goes much farther back. Jousting tournaments started during the 12th century as bloody battles between groups of knights who sought to knock opponents off their horses, according to the National Jousting Association.
By the end of the 13th century, individual jousts were more common, with two knights competing to score points by knocking each other off their horses or striking an opponent's shield. During the 16th and 17th centuries, jousting evolved into the game of skill and precision it is today.
Modern jousters ride down an 80-yard track with three arches, each with a ring suspended from it. The object is to spear the rings with a lance in nine seconds.
"The thrill you get from having a three-ring ride is the same the hundredth time you do it," said Vicki Betts, president of the Maryland Jousting Association.
Ken Enfield, 48, demonstrated Sunday evening, when the heat of the blazing sun had somewhat subsided. In the first of three runs down an 80-yard track on his Easton property, he mounted Fiddler, a light-tan, 1,200-pound quarter horse, a breed known for being short, muscular and fast.
Janice Enfield hung the 1-inch white rings - each slightly smaller than a quarter. Ken Enfield walked Fiddler to the right end of the track. Facing away, he took a moment to give himself and the horse time to relax and concentrate.
With legs bent, Enfield squatted just above the saddle as Fiddler took off down the track. One ring. Two rings.
Suddenly Fiddler bucked his hind legs, and threw Enfield over his head. Fiddler trotted off to the barn, while Enfield got back on his feet.
"These are the joys of breaking in a new horse," Enfield said as he dusted himself off.
That misadventure notwithstanding, Ken Enfield is a member of the National Jousting Hall of Fame, as are both of his siblings, his father, and his mother, Shirley.
Leon and Shirley Enfield met at a tournament, as did Ken and Janice. Linda Minneck, who still lives in Frederick County, won a national tournament in 1981 when she was pregnant with her son Corey, who is now the state and national champion.
Jousting has always been a family sport among Marylanders, said Dave Dinkle, vice president of the National Jousting Association.
"It's just been one of those things that the father did it, and then the mother went and supported it," Dinkle said. "It was done at churches and picnics. ... As the fathers were doing it, the kids got involved."
But in recent years, the sport has had a harder time attracting new competitors, Dinkle said.
Dinkle said part of the appeal of the sport is that there's not a lot of pressure to win, so competitors don't have to spend a lot of money.
"It's not a world-class sport. ... If you don't win, nobody's all that upset," he said.
The St. Margaret's tournament is expected to draw 20 to 45 jousters. The church had hosted jousting tournaments intermittently since 1860 before reviving its annual tournament in 1997, said Steve Brennan, a member of the church.
"We like to try to be a vital part of the community since the church has been there since ... the late 17th century," Brennan said. "It's useful to not only raise funds but increase community participation."
Back in Easton, Ken Enfield was trying to squeeze in more practice time for the tournament.
He grabbed a new horse and a new lance and got back in the saddle. As he rode Poco, a 970-pound chocolate quarter horse, to the end of the track, black fabric partially torn from his riding helmet flapped in the wind - the only evidence of his tumble 10 minutes earlier.
This time, he aimed for three-quarter-inch rings no bigger than a Lifesaver.
He snagged only one of them before trotting back to the right end of the track for a final run.
Twenty yards, one ring. Another 30 yards, two rings. Thirty more, and Enfield scored all three.
Saturday's joust will be held from 10:30 a.m. to 4 p.m. at St. Margaret's Episcopal Church, 601 Pleasant Plains Road. Tickets cost $5 per car; $2 for walk-ins and free for children age 6 and younger. Information: 410-974- 0200 or www.st-margarets.org.