WEST ORANGE, NJ — Friends of Edison will host its fourth annual Muckers Ball, to raise funds for the Thomas Edison National Historical Park in West Orange, on Saturday, Oct. 14, from 5:30 to 9 p.m. at the 211 Main St.
The Muckers’ Ball provides an enjoyable evening to celebrate the Muckers who worked with Thomas Edison. Edison had thousands of great ideas, but one of his paramount achievements was the very process of invention itself. He built research laboratories in West Orange and they became his “invention factory.” At the heart of this humming structure stood Edison’s “Muckers,” the skilled and trained technologists who nurtured the seeds of Edison’s imagination until they bloomed into new, practical products that changed America and the world. Edison could push his Muckers hard. Sometimes he required them to work all day and all night until some problem fell to their collective effort. But Edison also knew the value of each of his Muckers and, during those laborious days and nights, he would bring in food from local eateries to feed his team and keep them going.
“We’re trying to give our supporters a taste of what it was like to be an Edison Mucker,” Friends of Edison Chairman Arthur Gordon said in a press release. “People who join us at the event will have a rare chance to tour the laboratory buildings after normal hours and to share a meal as the Muckers might have done during their all-night research sessions.”
The evening includes casual fun, music, food and drink; though it is called a ball, people should come dressed for a casual evening of camaraderie and fun. However, the Friends encourage attendees to optionally outfit themselves as a Mucker, in the style of the 1890s, or in a steampunk vein. The event is held outside in a tent, so dress warmly. Following Edison’s lead at his “midnight lunches,” the Friends will offer food from local restaurants and cafes. Dancing under the tent to live period music provided by West Orange resident and pianist Jim Keefe and vintage Edison recordings will enhance the festivities. Also on hand will be Eternal Frontier to add a steampunk hue to the evening.
Purchase tickets online at www.foedison.org.