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April 28, 2015 Susan Crane (215) 247-5777 x121

Morris Arboretum Hosts its First STEAMpunk Expo on the Summer Solstice

Sign up today for Morris Arboretum’s STEAMpunk Expo with events throughout the Arboretum’s 92-acre garden on Sunday, June 21, 10am-8:30pm, the longest day of the year.

Explore the “what if?” around every bend as you stroll Morris Arboretum’s dynamic Victorian garden. Discover the alternative aesthetic of steampunk, where a reimagined past creates a fantastic future. Before electricity and fossil fuels, steam was the power that drove adventure and exploration. The Morris Arboretum hosts a day of events, fashion, food and fun. Then watch the sun dip beyond the horizon and celebrate the longest day of the year with an outdoor evening concert. Purchase tickets through TicketLeap at

Here are just a few events of many to whet your appetite for a fun-filled day:

Power it Up!

11am-3pm, various locations throughout garden

Imagine if you had to travel by hot air balloon or steam locomotive. Imagine if you had to wind your cell phone to charge it up. Explore the power of the past through the world of STEAM – Science, Technology, Engineering, Art and Math. At activity stations throughout the Arboretum you can experience the fun as you build a clockwork bird, engineer a hot air balloon, and create a nature sun print. Free with admission, however some activities may have a small fee.

Contraptions – The Rube Goldberg Variations

1pm-2pm, Upper Gallery

Historian and author Mark Donnelly presents the inventions no one mentions. Professor Donnelly’s research into science gone wrong will captivate and amuse you.

*Requires Expo ticket

Pterodomania – The Victorian Craze for Ferns

2:30-3:30pm, Upper Gallery

Victorians were obsessive collectors, and with the introduction of quicker steamships to transport plants, and the Wardian case to protect the plants as they traveled across oceans, collecting ferns became a Victorian passion. Morris Arboretum’s own plant propagation goddess and delightful speaker, Shelly Dillard, will transport you back with words and images to discover this little known facet of Victorian culture.

*Requires Expo ticket

Bartitsu Workshop

3:00-4:00pm, English Park

Learn to defend yourself like a true Victorian gentleman or lady. Professor of Arms, Mark Donnelly, will lead you through a participatory workshop designed to help you ward off those street thugs.

*Requires Expo ticket

Kyle Cassidy-steampunk - 640px

Fashion Show

4:00-5:00pm, Azalea Meadow Stage

The Art Institute of Philadelphia students have designed original steampunk clothing creations which have been juried for a fashion show as part of the STEAMpunk Expo. After the fashion show on the Azalea Meadow stage, students and their models will be available for up close looks and discussion about their creative process.

Free with admission.

STEAMpunk Dinner

5-6:30pm, Compton Café

Enjoy a four course gourmet meal devised by Chef Josh Hunter of Company’s Coming Catering. Chef dove into his antique cookbooks to create an Edwardian inspired meal. Bring your own beverage.

*Requires Expo ticket with dinner add-on

Steampunk band This Way to the Egress

This Way to the Egress

7-8pm, Azalea Meadow Stage

Dance your way toward sunset and hail the arrival of summer as This Way to the EGRESS presents the music from their astonishing new album Great Balancing Act. The band’s sound is a colorful collision of ragged rock, skewed eastern european beats, ska, sultry tangos and other brands of unclassifiable musical mayhem.

*Requires Expo ticket

The Morris Arboretum of the University of Pennsylvania is located at 100 East Northwestern Avenue in the Chestnut Hill section of Philadelphia. The 92-acre horticulture display garden features a spectacular collection of mature trees in a beautiful and colorful landscape. The Arboretum includes numerous picturesque spots such as a formal rose garden, historic water features, a swan pond, and the only remaining freestanding fernery in North America. The arboretum is listed on the National Register of Historic Places and is also the official arboretum of Pennsylvania. A permanent nationally award winning exhibit, Out on a Limb – a Tree Adventure adds to Morris Arboretum’s allure by transporting visitors 50 feet up into the treetops on a canopy walk that requires no climbing. Open weekdays 10am-4pm and weekends 10am-5pm (Apr-Oct). Open late on Wednesdays in June, July, and August until 8:00pm. For more information, visit