Hold a New Tournament
Events: throwing (javelins, etc), melee fighting, jousting, martial arts and races
Style: round robin / points-based
Length: one day
Awards: first, second and third place
Top Prizes: unusual artifacts
Crowd: wants to see blood
Betting: official - rigged odds
Other Entertainment: trained animals and a storytelling contest
Competitors of interest:
The precocious commoner who is suspected of cheating.
The hulking barbarian who is rumored to not always fight fair.
The menacing sorceror who has little practical skill.
The foreign noble who is relatively well-known.
The charismatic warrior who may not be in it to win.
The wandering fighter who knows quite a few unorthodox tricks.