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200 North Main St | Bloomington, Illinois | 309-827-0428

Cogs and Corsets: A Central Illinois Steampunk Happening

Friday, June 7
Starts at 5:00 PM

McLean County Museum of History
200 N. Main St, Bloomington IL 61701

Cogs and Corsets: A Central Illinois Steampunk Happening

The Museum is pleased to once again participate in the now third annual Cogs & Corsets festival. The Museum will be the site of history presentations, Tea Dueling, a Tea Room, and a variety of activities held on the Square with our friends from the Children’s Discovery Museum. Area galleries will feature the work of local and visiting artists alike, and the streets will be bustling with vendors, costumed visitors, teapot races, and more! We can’t wait to see you here! For registration and more information, please visit www.cogsandcorsetsil.org.

Schedule at a glance for Friday, June 7, 2019

**Please note that the schedule is subject to change**

4pm–7pm
Registration/Welcome/Information Booth

Get your event program/map, pick up and purchase tickets for premium events.

4pm–midnight
Open Gaming

Join fellow gamers at Red Raccoon Games for open play of your favorites.

5pm–8pm
First Friday Activities

Sponsor: Downtown Bloomington Association

See and be seen strolling the downtown shops and galleries. Many visiting and local artists, in-store specials and Steampunk-themed fun!

Steampunk Market (Vendor area) open

300 block of Main St. — Stroll our vendor area and shop for all manner of wonderful Steampunk accessories, handcrafts, tea, and so much more! Merchants and artists from all over the midwest will be showcasing their wares, helping you complete your perfect Steampunk ensemble.

5pm–9:30pm
Food Trucks / Pop-up restaurants

On the BCPA lawn — By popular request! In addition to our many downtown restaurants, we’ve coordinated with food trucks and other local food purveyors to bring you more options for sustenance as you enjoy the festivities.

5:30–7:30pm
Tea Dueling

Sponsor: McLean County Museum of History

Our Tiffin Master will preside over official Tea Dueling, allowing visitors to settle their spats like civilized folk: by dunking their biscuits in a hot cup of tea, and seeing who can be the last to complete a successful ‘nom’. Fun for all ages, and for participants and spectators alike.

Nerf Dueling

Sponsor: McLean County Museum of History

We welcome our friends from the Chicagoland Steampunk Society, who will be officiating Nerf Dueling on the Museum Square! If your damaged pride can’t be assuaged with simple tea dueling, might we suggest something with… projectiles? Dueling’s dark history in the 19th century is all too real, but ours is done in good, safe fun. Peruse the rules here, and prepare your final dramatics in case your opponent beats you to the draw.

6:00pm
Downtown Promenade

We’ll start the evening’s festivities with a promenade through the downtown in our steampunk finery! Get the overview of the downtown shops, galleries and restaurants while you show off your best ensemble to the public. The promenade will begin and end at the Registration Booth on the Museum Square; anyone dressed in steampunk clothing is welcome to join!

7–8:30pm
Steampunk Contra Dancing (Part 1)

Ticketed event. Come dance the night away with the Chicago band Ceilidh Bandicoots! Featuring callers Jonathan Sivier, Jon Hanson, and Scott Meyer.

Contra dancing was popular in the 19th century and it’s had a big revival this past decade. You don’t need a partner and you don’t need fancy lessons. Any level of dance skill can join in — just listen to the caller and have a ball. A costume is not required, but it makes it more fun!

Light refreshments will be served. Cash bar. Tickets can also be purchased at the door.

Note: Event will break to allow dancers to attend the Arc Attack Demo and will resume afterwards. Ticket price provides admission to both dance sessions.

Buy Tickets

8:45–9:15pm
Arc Attack! FREE Tesla Coil Demonstration

Our now-famous Tesla Coil kickoff event has hit the Big League. Come witness the nationally-recognized performance artists, Arc Attack, who will light up the night sky with their Tesla Coil demonstration. You’ve seen them on Through the Wormhole, and America’s Got Talent. You will not want to miss seeing them in person. This kickoff demonstration is free to all!

To ensure the best viewing, for 2019 this event has been relocated to the BCPA lawn.* 

*Weather-dependent, for obvious reasons!

9:30–11pm
Steampunk Contra Dancing (Part 2)

Ticketed event. Come dance the night away with the Chicago band Ceilidh Bandicoots! Featuring callers Jonathan Sivier, Jon Hanson and Scott Meyer.

Contra dancing was popular in the 19th Century and it’s had a big revival this past decade. You don’t need a partner and you don’t need fancy lessons. Any level of dance skill can join in — just listen to the caller and have a ball. A costume is not required but it makes it more fun!

Light refreshments will be served. Cash bar. Tickets can also be purchased at the door.

Note: Ticket price provides admission to both dance sessions.