On September 23 and 24, the Hartness House Inn will come alive with a Steampunk Circus Spectacular! The third annual Springfield Steampunk Festival has a very different theme compared to the first two festivals, with a huge focus this year on circus and carnival type events.
This year the festival will feature Karnevil, a circus side show act. Karnevil was founded by Dr. J.R. Whitcomb in 2011. They have been featured in both Weird NJ magazine and The Star Ledger. Karnevil is considered to be New Jersey’s premiere carnival sideshow experience as well as being touted globally as “The world’s most dangerous sideshow!” Whether bringing death-defying escapes, astounding acts of skill, classic sideshow fare, ridiculous games or informative presentations on macabre Victorian subject matter, the Karnevil crew delivers above and beyond any mortal expectations. The festival will feature a freak show, bullwhip stunt show, and Houdini escape act and so much more.
New England Center for the Circus Arts (NECCA) will have a presence at this year’s event as well. NECCA students from the youth troupe and professional program will be performing throughout the weekend at the Springfield Steampunk Festival. NECCA performances may include juggling, acrobatics, contortion, stilt walking, partner acrobatics, clowns, unicycle acts, and the like. NECCA representatives will also be available to provide information about their nonprofit organization.
The children’s program of the Springfield Steampunk Festival will also be circus-themed this year with traditional carnival-themed games.
This year the Calliope Steam Fashion Show will have a special circus focus. Any attendees can walk in the fashion show, regardless of the theme of their steampunk costumes. Those with a circus theme will be highlighted and children are encouraged to walk in the fashion show as well. Each year the creativity of festival-goers is highlighted in this entertaining event.
Beyond the circus theme, the festival has many other events and activities, including the headlining musical act Rasputina. Rasputina is a cello-based rock band that has performed or recorded with Marilyn Manson, Porno For Pyros, Cheap Trick, and the Goo Goo Dolls, among others. Rasputina’s style has a Victorian flavor to it, making them a perfect fit for a steampunk event. Many other musical acts will be scheduled throughout the weekend-long events, including The Long Losts and The King’s Busketeers.
Expect traditional Steampunk elements such as teapot races, absinthe tasting workshops, steampunk workshops and presentations, tea dueling, underground tunnel and telescope museum tours. The festival will also feature numerous vendors, a photo booth, weekend-long gaming by Dark Mountain Games, Light Saber Combat workshops, and much more.
This festival is a non-profit-volunteer-run fundraiser and proceeds will be used to create scholarships for Springfield students studying STEAM subjects (science, technology, engineering, art, and mathematics) post-high school graduation. To learn more about this nonprofit-run festival, to buy tickets, to volunteer, to vend or to become a sponsor visit www.springfieldvtsteampunkfest.com.All of this and more can be experienced at the Vermont Steampunk Festival, hosted by the Steampunk Society of Vermont at the Hartness House Inn. For more information visit www.springfieldvtsteampunkfest.com or call festival director Jennifer Ucci at (603) 369-1506.