It would be safe to say that, until recently, most Hannibalians had never heard of something called "Steampunk."

Now, all roads of the Steampunk community will lead to Hannibal Labor Day weekend. The Big River Steampunk Festival comes to downtown Hannibal Saturday and Sunday, August 30-31.

For the uneducated, Steampunk is most concisely described as Victorian science fiction. Another illustration is to imagine that, in the 1880s, steam power had become the power source of choice instead of electricity. Literary examples come from Jules Verne and H.G. Wells. In fact, Mark Twain dabbled in 19th century fantasy with his work, "A Connecticut Yankee in King Arthur's Court."

The weekend will feature vendors and exhibits geared to the Steampunk community, along with entertainment in the style of the late 1800's. There will be a "Tea with Queen Victoria," and tethered balloon rides over the Hannibal Riverfront.

Ken Marks of the Hannibal History Museum was a guest on KHMO's Talk Back:

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