13 Gears is an eclectic steampunk event held annually in Minneapolis, MN. The even included vendors, amazing outfits, tea dueling, games, music, a coloring contest and other curiosities. The event was held on October 24th, 2015 and brought together the most hardcore steampunk enthusiasts and looky-loos.
There was truly something for everyone. The attention to detail in the handcrafted products was far beyond anything you see and a typical craft show. Many items for purchase had a steampunk aesthetic but could be used and worn everyday. The craftsman could talk about each piece they created and most could do custom work on request.
There wasn't a shortage of other entertainment. The live music was a real treat featuring some artists that fit the genre. Also, some of the booths had games and curiosities to partake in. There was a both with an electric hand stability game. You had to move a metal wand down a metal track without the two touching, and you could hear the buzzer repeatedly going off because this was no easy task. One booth had me put a marshmallow dipped in liquid nitrogen in my mouth! That was quite the adventure!
There was a coloring contest with age brackets for children, teens, and adults. I happened to win the adult category. I take my coloring seriously! A week later I received a beautifully intricate pocket watch in the mail for my efforts. It was just lovely.
Out of all the shenanigans to partake in, my favorite would have to be the Tea Dueling. I had never heard of Tea Dueling before, but as it turns out, it has quite the following. The competition has very specific rules on timing and technique and the most experienced players knew all the tricks. You must dip a Chessman cookie into a cup of tea and then hold it up and get the complete cookie in your moth before it crumbles. The opponent who waits the longest to get the cookie in their mouth wins. It was far more entertaining than you would imagine!
I highly recommend you check out 13 Gears next year. You won't be disappointed! Just like Steven Tyler, those who love steampunk know how to entertain!