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Postcards from Louisville

Cosplay, makers, and other shenanigans at the first-ever River City Steampunk Expo in Kentucky

Wednesday, June 26, 2024

The inaugural River City Steampunk Expo took place May 31-June 2 at the Holiday Inn East in Louisville, Kentucky, with a program featuring panels, workshops, gaming, tea dueling, nerf dueling, and more. Performers included fire artist Steampunk Xena and pirate band The Minstrel Rav’n. The theme was “Steampunk in the Shadows.”

One highlight was “Steampunk My Ride,” in which a team of makers transformed attendees’ mobility devices into steampunk vehicles.

The event will return next year with a new name: Bourbon City Steam. It’s set for March 14-16 at the same venue, with “Victorian Villains & Monsters. . . and Heroes” as the theme.

Expo founder Geoffrey Mandragora told us he renamed the event to avoid confusion with the Big River Steampunk Festival in Hannibal, Missouri. Fortunately, Louisville has multiple nicknames to choose from. (Derby City, Falls City, and Glitter Ball City are still available.) Mandragora is also a steampunk author.

Photographer William Cardwell was on hand to document the festivities. You can see his photos in the gallery below. Thanks to the expo for allowing us to use them. Learn more on the website and Facebook page.


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