The Festival of Combustion Proves We Actually Did Stuff Without Cell Phones

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Chris McGinnis, Curator of The Festival of Combustion

“We want to highlight and pay tribute to the industrial grit that Pittsburgh was built on,” said Chris McGinnis, curator of The Festival of Combustion, a one-day celebration of art processes that require a high degree of heat. The festival also pays homage to the old ways of manufacturing…pre cell phone.

“I don’t think an event can really pay tribute the way ours can,” McGinnis said.

The Carnival-style event, which will take place at the historic Carrie Furnaces, offers a multitude of activities and workshops for all ages. Adults and children can take part in Hot crayon art, Glass Mosaics, Raku ceramics, Iron or Aluminum Scratch blocks, and tours of the Carrie Furnaces.

Pre-dating WWII (1907), the Carrie Furnaces rise above 92 feet above the Monongahela river, and offer visitors an intimate look into the iron-making technology before the industry’s collapse in the 1970’s.

The Festival of Combustion is geared towards enlightening the youth of today, and with that, visitors under the age of 18 will receive free admittance.

“Being able to see a piece of metal melted and formed right in front of you is pretty amazing. It preserves the process and develops an appreciation from younger generations,” said McGinnis.

Events like these are extremely important to maintain the integrity of a culture that paved the way for today. It’s imperative we realize that while the world now revolves around an innate sense of self-importance laced with an imperial gestation of excellence, the humility and intestinal fortitude embroiled in our heritage is inspirational.

The Festival of Combustion takes place on September 3rd from Noon-8pm. For more information, visit their website.

Image credits: Adam Taylor and Mark Fossum.