Steampunk Tasmania Festival this Saturday

FULL STEAM AHEAD: Pat Webb, Rhonda O'Sign, Anne Cameron, Neal Uncle, James Cameron and Susan Uncle from the George Town Steampunk Tasmania Festival committee at the Mt George lookout at George Town. Picture: Paul Scambler.

FULL STEAM AHEAD: Pat Webb, Rhonda O'Sign, Anne Cameron, Neal Uncle, James Cameron and Susan Uncle from the George Town Steampunk Tasmania Festival committee at the Mt George lookout at George Town. Picture: Paul Scambler.

Start your engines, because Steampunk Tasmania 2017 is just around the corner.

There will be costumes and characters galore when one of the more eccentric events on the calendar is held in George Town on Saturday.

The story this year surrounds the Airship Ponrabble Boilertrumpet, whose crew are stopping off in George Town to interact with the community.

Committee secretary Lee Ann Patterson said they couldn’t have picked a better place to anchor.

“Given George Town’s heavy industry, there is a real calling for this type of genre,” she said.

“There is also our arts and innovation, as well as our links with maritime history.”

Incorporating elements of science fiction, arts and culture with a specific focus on industrial machinery, steampunk came into being three decades ago, and has since developed to have life of its own in events across the world.  Fans of the genre are encouraged to create their own personas, which extends to what profession they hold and their attire. 

Rhonda O'Sign and Anne Cameron at the Mt George lookout at George Town.

Rhonda O'Sign and Anne Cameron at the Mt George lookout at George Town.

Mrs Patterson said the visual spectacle is central to steampunk’s overall appeal.

“It’s something out of the ordinary that people put their own spin on,” she said.

“They can really put their imagination into steampunk, while also wearing some of the fashion of the Victoriana era.

“The aspects of the activities that go with the genre also draw people in.”

Saturday’s schedule includes live music, stalls, children’s activities, model steam trains, a fashion parade, as well as sailing on the Airship Ponrabble Boilertrumpet.

This year’s event will also feature a world record attempt for the most amount of people in steampunk clothing. Mrs Patterson said they had already heard from the current holders of the mark.

“Oamaru in New Zealand had 288 people for their record, so we are hoping to take it off them,” she said.

“We received a call from one of the organisers the other day, wishing us luck, so it is a bit of a Trans-Tasman battle.”

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