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Flash Sale Extended in Honor of Leaving Burning Man Woes + Schedule

Ladies and Laddies, we are just over a week away from the fantabulous 6th Annual Victorian Steampunk Ball at Pipers Opera House in Virginia City!

Don’t have your ticket yet? Get your tickets here.  In honor of our Burning Man friends who were stuck in unbelievable traffic and unable to successfully access Eventbrite on spotty Aether Waves, we have extended our Flash Sale through the weekend.  If you did not attend Burning Man, we will look the other way while you buy your discounted tickets as well.

If you are a Sustaining Member, don’t forget to request your special Discount Code that gets you a ticket at below cost by emailing

This year is a special year for our Ball, as it will likely be the last at Piper’s Opera House.  Big things are in the works for our little event.  Come cut a rug one last time with us in this glorious venue to the music of the Velveteen Band and the Nathaniel Johnstone Band.  Laugh it up with the Aether Brigade.  Show off your finest in a Grand March.  Take home a complimentary souvenir picture.  We can’t wait to see you.

The Festivities start Friday night at the Canvas Café with a Murder Mystery and end with our world famous Ball Saturday night at 8 pm. You don’t want to miss it.  Visit Our Website for descriptions of all the happenings. Here is the bare bone schedule:

Schedule (times subject to variation. Parade, Dinner Theater, and Ball times are firm):

Friday, September 16, 2016

  • 6 pm to 10 pm: Dinner with Acoustic Set by the Nathaniel Johnstone Band and Murder Mystery by The Aether Brigade at Canvas Cafe

Saturday, September 17, 2016

  • 7 am to 11 am: Breakfast at Canvas Cafe,
  • 11 am: lineup for Parade, please RSVP here,
  • Noon to 1 pm: Parade,
  • 1 pm to 8 pm: Vending next to Piper’s Opera House,
  • Post parade to 3 pm: Lunch at Canvas Cafe,
  • 5 pm to 7 pm: Dinner Theatre in Piper’s Opera House,
  • 7 pm to 8 pm: Changeover from Dinner to Ball,
  • 8 pm to Midnight: Sixth Annual Victorian Steampunk Ball,
    • 8 to 10 pm The Velveteen Band,
    • 8:15 Grand March,
    • 8:45 Costume Contest,
    • 10 pm to midnight: The Nathaniel Johnstone Band, and
  • Midnight to 1 am: Load out and clean up of Piper’s Opera House.


If you would like to see more amazing events like this, consider clicking the donate button for a small donation, purchasing a VIP Dinner Ticket or becoming a Sustaining Member.  Without your support, none of this is possible.  We will also have HDS merchandise for sale at the Ball from $1 buttons to $15 mugs to $20 t-shirts.  We are also looking for ongoing volunteers for positions like Membership Director, Public Relations, Social Media Director, and Vendor Coordinator.  We can’t thank you enough for your help.

We can’t wait to see you there!

High Desert Steam

More Fun and More Food for The Sixth Annual Victorian Steampunk Ball Weekend!

Are you headed up to Virginia City for the 6th Annual Victorian Steampunk Ball?  Well you have to eat, right?  Why not eat well and be entertained?  Tickets for all the following meals are available on our Ticket Page. Tickets to all meals are available for the 12 and under crowd at half price.

If you are coming up Friday night, join the organizers and entertainers for the Friday Casual Dinner with a performance by The Nathaniel Johnstone Band and a Murder Mystery Add-on by The Aether Brigade.

Location:  Canvas Café, 110 N. C St., Virginia City, NV 89440

Date and time: Friday, September 16 from 6 pm to 10 pm

Price: $20 for dinner and music, $10 add on to participate in the Murder Mystery


  • Salad,
  • Pork Loin,
  • Salmon,
  • Vegetable Curry,
  • Potatoes,
  • Local Seasonal Veggies, and
  • Bread Pudding.

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For your entertainment, The Aether Brigade has written an all new Murder Mystery.  You may preorder your tickets or add during dinner to participate.

A whodunit has never been so inappropriate! Be prepared to learn about the Aether Brigade’s depravities, including about their secret liquor stills, sexually transmitted diseases the crew shares, the killer robots they harbor, how much they hate sensitivity training and of course, murder! Fully interactive: you must question the suspects and bribe them if you can.

“Hilarious and intriguing; I’d party with them.” –Sherlock Holmes, February 1910

Seating is limited.

Nathaniel Johnstone Band

The Nathaniel Johnstone Band

Saturday Dinner Theatre:

Location:  Piper’s Opera House.

Date and time: Saturday, September 17 from 5 pm to 7 pm.

Price: $29 per person includes tax, tip, and entertainment. VIP tickets are available for $59 (regular price plus $30 donation). You get all of the standard ticket items plus preferential seating with the Entertainers and first in line for the Buffet.

Menu: Chef Richard will delight us with a buffet of:

  • Salad,
  • Chicken breast with lemon sauce,
  • Beef steak pinwheels stuffed with spinach and feta,
  • A delightful vegetarian entrée tailored to the freshest vegetables,
  • Local seasonal vegetables, probably roasted,
  • Roasted Potatoes, and
  • Fruit for dessert.

Have a lovely sit down dinner in historic Piper’s Opera House while we entertain you with music interspersed with vignettes of our entertainers “singing” for their supper with shorts that highlight whatever talent they want to bring to the table.  We are as excited to see what they are going to do as you are!

For your dinner ticket price you get a filling sit down dinner, great company, and a show.

For a VIP ticket you get exclusive seating with the entertainers and the ability to go through the buffet first.  High Desert Steam appreciates your donations!

Seating is limited.


The Velveteen Band

Breakfast on Saturday morning:

Location:  Canvas Café, 110 N. C St., Virginia City, NV 89440

Date and time: Saturday, September 17, 6 am to 11 am.

Price: $12.50 includes tax and tip

Menu: Diner’s choice of beverages (not including alcohol) plus one of the following:

  • Bacon and Eggs,
  • Sausage and Eggs,
  • Granola and Yogurt,
  • Omelet with up to three toppings,
  • Egg white omelet with up to three toppings,
  • Oscar Benedict,
  • Classic Benedict, or
  • Spinach Benedict.

All breakfast include home fries and toast. Patrons can pay an extra charge to have salmon or steak. Vegetarians can talk to the chef and work out what is best for them.

Lunch on Saturday Afternoon:

Location:  Canvas Café, 110 N. C St., Virginia City, NV 89440

Date and time: Saturday, September 17, 1 pm to 3 pm

Price: $12.50 includes tax and tip


  • Lunch specials will be posted based on what is fresh and seasonal on the day of the event.
  • You may also order any of the breakfast items.

We are offering these meals to you at our cost. We just wanted to make it more of a full party weekend and to make sure you had an option for reasonably priced, excellent food. It is our hope that you’ll enjoy these dining and socializing opportunities. Thank you for supporting High Desert Steam!


The Canvas Cafe

The 6th Annual Victorian Steampunk Ball: Under the Sea

Subtitle: A Celebration of the Explorers’ Club’s Discovery of the Northern Nevada Ichthyosaur

To be held on September 17, 2016 at Piper’s Opera House in Virginia City, NV.

Buy Tickets HERE. Sustaining Members, please email to get your secret code.

For updates and to connect with the conversation, join our Facebook event HERE.

Be sure to check back for more posts about individual events!

Join High Desert Steam on September 17, 2016 in historic Virginia City for our 6th Annual Victorian Steampunk Ball.  Dance the night away in Piper’s Opera House to The Velveteen Band and The Nathaniel Johnstone Band. Relish the air conditioned comfort, back at Piper’s just for you.  Enjoy free desserts and a cash bar with drink specials chosen just for you.  This year we will be joined again by the Aether Brigade and the League of Proper Villains. Foxx Foto will bring back printed on site, commemorative pictures.

During the day, join us at noon for our annual parade. Visit our vendors next to Piper’s to find that perfect finishing touch for your outfit.  Walk the Virginia City boardwalk and enjoy the Comstock ambiance.  You may even be able to catch a train ride!

While we are sad to announce that Asha will not bring back their Medicine Show this year, we are happy to announce that their departure has allowed us to arrange a Saturday early evening treat for you! We have arranged some entertainment and a buffet dinner, so don’t miss our brand new Dinner Theatre! Seating is limited, and Piper’s will be air conditioned for your comfort.  We are offering a few VIP seats for people who want to give High Desert Steam a little extra support and get the best seats. Except for the VIP tickets, this special dinner is also being offered at our cost. We are arranging for both omnivore and vegetarian food. We know that eating in Virginia City can be a challenge. We just want to turn it from frustrating to a fun pre-party!

Don’t forget to pick up meal tickets to make sure you can catch a bite to eat.  We have arranged to have food specials Friday and Saturday so you don’t have to scramble. Friday dinner will include a special performance by the Nathaniel Johnstone Band. Come meet Nathaniel, Tempest, and Dogwood up close and personal! Friday Dinner, Saturday breakfast, and Saturday lunch will be at the Canvas Cafe at 420 B Street, Virginia City, NV 89440. These meal tickets are being offered to you at our cost.

All meal tickets much be purchased by September 2nd so that we can give the caterer an accurate head count.

All tickets, including food tickets, can be picked up at Will Call at Piper’s Opera House. For Friday night, just show up at the Canvas Cafe.

It will be a night to remember!

Brief Breakdown of what tickets are and what you get for each ticket:

Early Bird Ball Ticket: $52.  Regular Bird Ball Ticket: $59. There are also child ball tickets available for $25. This ticket gets you a wristband that:

  • Admits you to the Ball There will be no secondary, free venue this year,
  • Two Steampunk Headliners for your listening and dancing enjoyment! The Velveteen Band will lead off, and The Nathaniel Johnstone Band will close,
  • A Grand March, back by popular demand,
  • Costume Contest,
  • One Photo Booth Ticket that includes one printed picture to take with you,
  • Air conditioning in Piper’s,
  • Dessert Buffet (Limited quantities as we are paying full price for this year, not the ingredients only price that we had for the first five years. Please, do not skip dinner!),
  • Cash Bar in the back corner of the Ballroom with drink specials, and
  • A few surprises.

The other tickets are all meal tickets. All meal tickets except for the VIP ticket are at our cost. We just wanted someone to be ready to deal with our patrons and to get a good deal. In the order that the meals will be provided, the tickets are:

Friday Dinner (includes a performance by Nathaniel Johnstone): $20 (12 and under Child ticket for $10),
Saturday Breakfast: $12.50 (12 and under Child ticket for $6.25),
Saturday Lunch: $12.50 (12 and under Child ticket for $6.25),
Saturday Dinner Theatre (Dinner + Entertainment): $29 (12 and under Child ticket for $14.50), and
VIP Saturday Dinner Theatre (Dinner + Entertainment + Donation): $59.

On top of these ticket fees, Eventbrite adds their fees. If you are looking at their website on your phone, the fees are already added in.


6th Annual Yule Steam is Almost Here!

poster layout_11x171864 Tavern on California Street is hosting us again for the Sixth Annual Yule Steam! Free and open to the public, this event benefits Christmas on the Corridor, a local charity that collects and distributes toys and warm clothes for Reno children (and adults) in need.

So, bring a toy or 20 to donate, bring new or gently used outerwear, donate a raffle prize, buy some raffle tickets (all money collected at this event goes straight to Christmas on the Corridor), or just come out and raise a glass to a fabulously steamy year! I hope to see you there. From 8 pm until we drop on Friday, December 11th.

Christmas on the Corridor serving disadvantaged youth and seniors living in weekly motels.

If you have an item to donate for a raffle prize, contact Willie Puchert:

T-Shirt Sponsorship

If you are looking for a great way to promote your company, big or small, and support High Desert Steam, consider sponsoring the 2015 commemorative t-shirt.

Last year’s shirt is still around with the logo art of Mairin Kareli and the backside printed with many of our die hard sponsors. This shirt is our flagship, undated one and we will always be able be able to do more print runs.

This year’s guidelines are posted HERE. Sponsoring only costs $50, and allows us to put together such amazing events as the Steampunk Expo, the Ball at Piper’s Opera House, and Yule Steam.

With enough support, we will be able to offer additional items, such as coffee mugs and sweatshirts. The front art for this year’s shirt will be determined at the HDS Steampunk Art Contest.