Each year the British High Commissioner hosts an International Christmas Fair at his residence, Homewood, to benefit Save the Children. We’ve been several times and it’s a jolly splendid place for a day out, with music, stalls, Devonshire teas, foods from Wellington’s ethnic communities and more. (And they’re always delighted to have steampunks wandering about. Expect photo requests.)
This year it’s on between 11am and 3pm on Saturday 25 November and admission is by gold coin. We don’t bother with meeting times and so forth; just come along in your finery and we’ll find each other.
Homewood, at 50 Homewood Avenue in Karori, is a lovely old house with delightful grounds to explore. The weather is sounding quite propitious at this stage, so we’ll look forward to seeing you there.
A very splendid ho ho ho to all our Capital! Steampunk followers.
The Johnsonville Christmas Parade will be on Saturday 2 December. Sir Harvey Lampoon has offered the use of his finest dirigible (or perhaps truck) to use as a float, and we’d love to see as many steampunks, goths, cosplayers or others as possible joining in.
The parade assembly area is along Dr Taylor Terrace in Johnsonville – the vital piece of information to know is that Capital! Steampunk’s parade number is 36 (write it down now, or make a note in your aetheric communication device). Mention that number to anybody who looks official and they should be able to direct you to where the rest of us should be. Note that there’ll be no parking on Dr Taylor Terrace or Frankmoore Avenue on the day, so arrive in good time if you need to find a park.
We’ll be getting together at the assembly point from 10am. The parade will move off at 10.45 and will go from Dr Taylor Terrace to Broderick Road, then to Johnsonville Road, Moorefield Road, Frankmoore Avenue and back to Dr Taylor Terrace.
Wear your most splendid outfits and come along prepared to smile, wave and make noises (kazoos, bells, drums, etc. are highly encouraged). Racing teapots are welcome to accompany us – just be aware that if your teapot’s battery runs out you’ll probably have to carry it.
If the weather is nasty the parade will be cancelled – there’s no alternate date. Cancellation notices will be on The Breeze and NewstalkZB, and we’ll try to put something up here if we find out in time. But our experience is that it almost never rains when Capital! Steampunk is out and about, so everything should be marvellous.
The Wairarapa’s first steampunk art exhibition is on between 25 September and 23 October at King Street Artworks, 16 Queen Street in Masterton, but Sunday 15 October is a special day for steampunks from around the region to get together, view the exhibition and workshops and indulge in a bit of Splendid Teapot Racing.
Brass & Glass Photography will also be there, offering the opportunity to have our photos taken by a traditional wet plate technique ($45 per photo).
The day runs between 10am and 3pm. Come along in your best steampunk promenading outfit.
It’s been a while since we headed over to Greytown’s renowned Cobblestones Museum, so here we go again on the Saturday of Labour Weekend between 10am and 3.30pm.
This will be a fun family event, with free entry, pony rides and egg-and-spoon and sack races for the kids, plus a tug of war, a pie bake off, vintage crafts and devonshire teas (and of course the opportunity to look around the displays of Wairarapa history and vintage machinery).
Bring cash for food and drink, etc – there’s no eftpos. And be sure to dress up for your vintage photograph!
A good steampunk swanning opportunity to mix and mingle in the Wairarapa, and it’s entirely possible there could be a spot of tea duelling if you’d like to try it out.
Spring is here (we hope) and it’s over the hill to Featherston to meet up with our Wai Steam friends for another miniature train carnival.
There’ll be train rides, market stalls, demonstrations and a great display of model trains and layouts. Plus, of course, that thing we do so well called Splendid Teapot Racing.
The carnival is in Clifford Square in Featherston and runs from 10am to 3pm on Saturday 2 September. Come along with a picnic lunch, your best racing teapot and of course your most splendid train-riding attire.
Have a look at the official brochure for more information.
Photographers Brian Scadden and Jane Fletcher are coming to Wellington on Sunday 30th July to take our photographs using traditional Victorian photographic techniques. You can see your photo develop before your eyes out in the daylight.
This event is for steampunks who wish to have their photos taken in full steam or Victorian/Edwardian dress. You get an original tintype photo, an electronic version to keep and an amazing experience, just for $40 each.
The photographers Brian and Jane are available between 10.30 am and 3pm. The process is leisurely and cannot be rushed. We will have a friendly BYO shared picnic in a beautiful home while we wait our turn, watch the photo process and socialise.
Contact us to confirm and indicate how many people will attend and we’ll let you know the address in Khandallah and a guide time for the photo session. Numbers are limited.
You can hear more about the technique here.
Time to oil the time machine and polish your finery, or vice versa. The Time Travellers’ Ball is coming to the ANZAC Hall in Featherston on Saturday 24 June, starting at 7pm and finishing … later.
The entry price of $30 includes a glass of mead on entry plus supper and entertainment. Come dressed in your most splendid outfit from the past, future or alternate timeline and join us for a fun night. We already know some of our friends from the Wairarapa and Whanganui steampunk groups will be there – we can pick up where we left off in Oamaru!
Book your tickets here and, while you’re on the site, have a look at the concept art for the venue – it should be amazing. (A steampunk-themed bar? What are they trying to say … ?)
James Gleick is a Pulitzer Prize-winning author and, under the auspices of the Royal Society of New Zealand, will be discussing his new book Time Travel – A History with Wallace Chapman, the host of Sunday Morning on RNZ National. He’ll be talking about how the idea of time travel has evolved through literature and science, and how it’s influenced our ideas about time itself.
Time travel is of course dear to the hearts of many steampunks – some of us, indeed, might not exist without it – so we think this might be rather fun to attend (in our approved time travelling outfits, of course). The event will be held in Te Papa’s Soundings Theatre on Monday 15 May at 6pm. Tickets are available here.
Remember – this is definitely For Science!
Our favourite (extinct) scary monsters are coming to the Botanic Gardens, and it is our duty as proud citizens of the Empire to defend our fellow Wellingtonians against their depredations.
Or alternatively, in the words of the Eventfinda listing:
Get up close and personal with our friendly T-rex, Velociraptor, Dilophosaurus and meet some baby dinosaurs.
Learn about the dinosaurs, plants, and trees which lived millions of years ago in our ancient continent of Gondwana. Ideal for kids aged 4 – 12 years old.
This amazing kids’ event also includes sieving for real fossil sharks’ teeth, (keep the best one you find!), kids’ dinosaur tattoos, and making fossils.
This is a bookings-only event on the soundshell lawn and runs from 14 – 18 April, with a number of daily session times. We can’t guarantee every Capital! Steampunk member who wants to go will be able to get into the same session, but the Colonel and Mrs. Hudson (the younger) will be there from 1-2pm on Sunday 16 April. Book on Eventfinda – it’s only $8 – and don’t forget to bring your best ray gun. Can’t be too careful, you know.
A scone and cup of tea in the Lady Norwood Rose Gardens afterwards is entirely on the cards for any who’d like to join us.
Circa Theatre will shortly be presenting Mr and Mrs Alexander: Sideshows & Psychics, and it sounds like just our thing. To quote their publicity material:
1888. New Zealand. Mr Alexander defies the laws of physics. Mrs Alexander reads minds. Audiences gasp at their heart-stopping finale, The Possum Trap… until the night they disappear.
Step right up for a seat to Mr and Mrs Alexander’s final perfomance. Acclaimed variety artists Lizzie Tollemache and David Ladderman weave together illusion, mind reading and sideshow to tell this award winning New Zealand story, which has enjoyed sold out seasons across Australia, the UK and Canada.
Inspired by a ruthless Victorian underbelly of hucksters, mediums and carnies; expect edge-of-your-seat, breathtaking fun, full of laughs and thrills.
Capital! Steampunk is making an evening of it for the opening night on Tuesday 18 April at 7.30pm. Seats aren’t allocated, so we’ll be able to cluster in a splendidly-attired group. Book here and we’ll see you on the night. Gentlemen: please remove your top hats once inside so other patrons can see the stage.
Circa has a bar in which to congregate before and after the show, and we are promised … a photographer!
(It’s also Professor Carwadine’s birthday that day, so give her a hug.)