Neverwas Haul Once Again Open for Tours on Vallejo’s Mare Island
Thursday, June 9, 2022
Obtainium Works is once again offering tours of the Neverwas Haul, the Victorian house on wheels that’s become a steampunk icon. This time, tours will be available every other Sunday, from June 12 through Dec. 11, at the Haul’s new temporary location, the Mare Island Art Studios in Vallejo, California. Hours are 11 a.m. to 3 p.m.
Originally constructed in 2006, the Haul is best known for its appearances at multiple Burning Man festivals in Nevada’s Black Rock Desert. It’s also been displayed at the Bay Area Maker Faire and the Lyft Art Park in downtown Las Vegas.
After the Haul’s return last year from Las Vegas, Obtainium Works recruited volunteers for a restoration project that included a power-washing, painting, and repairs. It was then opened for tours in an art space near the Mare Island Brewery on Vallejo’s Mare Island.
The group originally planned to move the Haul back to the Obtainium Works studio near downtown Vallejo, but instead towed it a few blocks to the new location at 110 Pintado St.
In March, at the Clockwork Alchemy convention near San Francisco, Obtainium Works leaders Shannon and Kathy O’Hare announced plans to convert the Haul into a rentable tiny home, a process that will take about two years.
For more information about touring the Haul, including available dates, see this Facebook event page.
New Details About Obtainium Cup Rally
The Mare Island Art Studios are also the new starting point for this year’s Obtainium Cup Contraptor’s Rally, and Obtainium Works has revealed new details about the event, a major highlight on the Northern California steampunk calendar.
The rally is a competition in which art cars navigate a series of challenges including zombies, flying monkeys, fighting robots, and the Mad Hatter Tea Party. With the new location, the organizers have designated a new, two-mile obstacle course that will place the challenges at notable landmarks on the island, including the Savage & Cooke Distillery, Mare Island Brewery, and the Mighty Midget, a historic U.S. Navy ship.
Most fittingly, the zombies will attack at the Nightmare Island warehouse, site of a haunted house attraction that opens prior to Halloween.
New this year is the Musical Pandemonium, a contraption that will generate a loud cacophony when participants drop balls into the machine.
The event also includes a steampunk festival with food, live music, and vendors. And given this year’s location, guests will also be able to see the Haul. It’s all set for Sunday, July 31, from 11 a.m. to 6 p.m. The rally begins at 2 p.m.
See the group’s website for more info.