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Steampunk festival rolling into Strasburg this weekend

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You might be surprised to see people walking around Strasburg wearing aviation goggles, top hats and clockwork-like gadgets being featured as jewelry.

But for those who embrace the Steampunk lifestyle, this shift from typical fall uniforms of hoodies and denim is a welcome change, and cause for celebration of the cosplay-derivative subculture.

And for the duration of Steampunk unLimited, which offers a variety of different activities for youth and adults from Oct. 14 to 16, Steampunk lovers will be able to participate in a festival that caters to all their early 20th century desires.

In case you’re looking at the words above as though it’s a foreign language, Steampunk, or a sci-fi genre driven by the idea of steam-powered machinery over modern technology developments, often features Victorian era clothing with quirky, metallic adornments or mechanical contraptions.

Intrigued? There’s no shortage of events showcasing what the subculture’s all about with activities that’ll highlight the most creative marriage of fashion and technology out there.

On Friday, solve your way out of a Victorian murder mystery train car or attend a wine and cheese lounge in luxury car on the Strasburg Rail Road. You could also play charades hosted by the Miracle Elixir Sideshow, an old-fashioned medicine show, or have your fortune read while aboard the “Paranormal to Paradise” train car, which departs at 8 p.m. A “supranatural pub quiz” will also be available in the Parlor Car.

For those wanting a little less mystery and metaphysical excitement, a Bierzug Lounge and Bierzug dining will present traditional German fare and a selection of beers on a late night train that takes off about 10 p.m.

Off the rails, a Victorian Ball and a Steampunk fashion show are the perfect way to take in all the style ex machina.

Hear music from the Victorian period while learning featured styles of dance such as the Grand March, Virginia Reel, Spanish Dance, Quadrilles and Waltz, which will all be taught to couples at the ball by instructor Sharon Guli. The ball runs from 4:30 to 7 p.m. on Saturday.

The fashion show, which begins at 11 a.m. on Saturday morning, will feature funky styles from enthusiasts and vendors alike.

You could also watch fire performance skills Friday night in a show from the Pyrophoric Fire Dance Troupe, or see dogs perform awesome tricks onstage during Circus Stella, who will perform both Friday and Saturday night.

Watch: Rescued dogs star in Circus Stella at Pa. Renaissance Faire
Circus Stella features Dextre and Jayna Tripp and their five rescued dogs whom they've trained to perform.
Chris Dunn, FlipSidePA

In addition to all of these unique events, there will be side show performances, musical performances from Abney Park, Eli August, unlimited train rides on coach class cars and a slew of vendors selling all the appliance-influenced knickknacks your Steampunk heart could want.


What: Steampunk unLimited
When: Friday, Oct. 14 to Sunday, Oct. 16
Where: 301 Gap Road, Ronk, PA
Cost: $20-$56; costs vary for select events
More information: