Friday, May 21, 2010

Steampunk Fair

Last weekend was the three day World Steampunk Fair in Piscataway, New Jersey. This was my first period convention besides a Renaissance Fair I attended two years ago in Maryland. I did not know much about the Steampunk subculture so I entered the fair for a vague idea of what to expect. I was packed, excited, and ready to jump into yesterday's future.

The hotel room was lovely. I was glad I managed to book a room before they were full. The Fair was wonderful. There were events and competitions I wanted to attend each day. I had purchased tickets to the Cup of Brown Joy Tea Party and Lovecraft’s Revenge Interactive Dinner Theatre: two of the more exclusive events for the weekend.

Set out day! It was a beautiful morning. Slightly cloud but warm and sunny.

Brad and I unfortunately set out a little later than we wanted to. Then New Jersey and Google maps had a disagreement. We got lost in what I could guess was Morrisville. When we finally arrived at the Radisson Hotel the tea party had sadly already begun. We spent the evening at dinner and wandering through the shops on the bottom floor of the hotel. Then befriended a hilarious character named Micah and the performers of the Street Circus. We ment up with Angelica, my lolita friend ❤! We all sat down for a few drinks and joked until it was time for The Queen of Steam drag competition.

Afterward Brad, Angelica, and I went to the courtyard for the Band of Thieves and Mr. E performances which were before the Street Circus. The fire performances were amazing. One woman had a giant hula hoop ring with lit spokes. I would be too afraid of setting my hair on fire to try that. We watched the antics of the Street Circus and afterward turned in for the night.

Room service!

❤ Brad had ordered room service while I was still sleeping. ❤

For the second day Brad, Angelica, and I went to a discussion group: Steampunk and Social Issues. It was rather informative. The only horrible thing was the fact there was no air conditioning in that room and I was wearing a corset. Afterward Angelica left for an Asian Ball-Jointed Doll Meetup and we continued shopping. Later Brad and I caught a few bands playing in the courtyard.

Later than evening was the Interactive Dinner Theatre, which wasn't what I was expecting but hilarious! We were given slips from Lovecraft’s book and instructed to act a certain way. Brad got to act as Satan, perfect! My instructions were to act like an alien, not as much fun. The story was that Lovecraft was supposedly brutally killed in his hotel room. The murderer had then released spores in the ventilation system which were driving everyone mad. Our new friend Micah was to act like someone with an intelligence inferior to a three year old. He played the part extremely well.

Afterward Brad and I rejoined Angelica for the cabaret. We went to see the Band of Thieves/Mr. E/Street Circus again. This time we got to see sword walking and fire juggling along with some of the same skits from the Friday show. Then it was time for Voltaire!

After Voltaire's concert, my companions and I ran back over to the cabaret for a short while. We then danced a bit at the Big Brass Ball and went to bed.

The last day... After packing and checking out, Brad and I went down to breakfast. We were still exhausted from yesterday, so we did not plan on attending much before leaving. We tagged along while Angelica shopped. Then shared a few of the most delicious truffles I had ever tasted while waiting to see what video games were going to be available to play. We left shortly after arriving and went to the Mad Science Competition. I participated in a hugging experiment and received a lovely complimentary restraining order.

Upon leaving the competition we saw a neat display of reconstructed and decorated bicycles. Then finally we left for home.

It was an eventful and wonderful weekend. There were so many lovely outfits, bands, and performances. Brad and I plan to attend next year. I think the only down point was that most of the shops seemed to have an very Renaissance Fair feel. I talked to a few of the patrons and they confirmed that they work at the local Renaissance Fairs. Oh well. Despite checking out all the shops, I only bought two things. I'm a picky shopper.

More pictures from the weekend will be uploaded later.

top image from:Steampunk Empire


cable_zombie said...

That bracelet looks amazing - I assume it's a bangle sort of thing? Whatever it is, it looks super shiny cool :)

Anonymous said...

Yeah, there was kind of a Renn faire atmosphere, cause the guy who organized it, Jeff Mach does the Wicked Faire also which is an alternative Ren Faire.

From what I've seen so far of the Steampunk community, there's like a 50-50 of people who are just into Steampunk and Steampunk is their main interest versus people who are rolling into this from SCA and Rennfaire type things.

But it can only get better from here, right?

Lady Kristen said...

Thank you cable_zombie. Yes, it is a pewter bangle. Here is a picture of the bangle alone.

Angelica!❤ I definitely look forward to going to the Fair next year. Most definitely I believe it will get better.