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Tesla Fever Strikes Again – Tesla Fest: Electric Circus

After announcing plans to dedicate Niagara Street as The Tesla Heritage Corridor in July, another Tesla initiative is now underway.

First came Buffalo Common Council’s designation of Niagara Street (from Vulcan Street to Busti Avenue) as the “Tesla Heritage Corridor.” The corridor is the same path that hydroelectricity took from the Adam’s Station in Niagara Falls to Terminal A on Niagara Street for the Pan-American Exposition. Incredibly, Buffalonians are just starting to get tuned into the importance that Tesla has on this region, and the world. Everyone knows the role that Niagara Falls played in electrifying this city, but the players such as Tesla have remained relatively obscure… until now.

Next up, it’s Martin McGee, Dana Saylor and Tara Sasiadek in concert with ELAB, who are driving this latest Tesla tribute. These Tesla fanatics are currently working on bringing Tesla Fest: Electric Circus to The Barrel Factory in the Old First Ward. The event pays homage to the inventor, and his achievements.

Party Like It’s 1899 at Tesla Fest: Electric Circus our Tesla-themed extravaganza with artist installations and performances, music, poets, dance, video projections and more is in the tradition of Hallwalls’ legendary ‘Artists and Models Affair’.  Keith Harrington aka PROJEX, fresh off his spectacular Hotel Henry illumination will be working his magic on the exterior of our venue, the Lakeward Spirits event center in the Old First Ward.  Jack of all trades artist,  Franklin LaVoie is creating a giant themed LED + fiber optic figure called; ‘Electric Human’, something like Buffalo’s own Burning Man symbol for the night.

The event is a tribute to what is known as “The Birthplace of The Electric Age”. Through Tesla, Buffalo played a significant role, with the first transmission of AC power from Niagara Falls to Buffalo in November 1896.

A spinoff of the event is a proposal to build a statue dedicated to Tesla that would be erected in Downtown Buffalo. The statue initiative has been endorsed by Buffalo Place.

McGee noted that “Buffalo is lagging well behind Hamilton Ont. who is touting their city as the First Canadian City to receive AC power from the Falls. Hamilton has named a major highway after Tesla and are planning their own statue as well as naming a school after Tesla. We would like to see the pocket park named Nikola Tesla Memorial Park or something to that effect. The pocket park at Main and N. Division adjacent to the M&T headquarters plaza does not have a formal name.  This would give it a GPS coordinate.  Other places have Tesla statues but having a park of its own is unique as far as we know.

“Our dream is to unveil the downtown statue with great fanfare on his 162nd birthday July 10th, 2018. Tesla would appreciate the timing as he always liked things that were divisible by 3. 162 divided by 3 = 54.”

Buffalo’s claim to Tesla fame have been few and far between. But now we have the heritage corridor, news of Tesla Fest: Electric Circus, and hopefully a statue soon underway. Plus, it doesn’t hurt to have Solar City here in Buffalo, with Elon Musk (Tesla car) at the helm.

“When my co-founder, Dana Saylor and I teamed up two years ago, our goal was to tell the epic story of Nikola Tesla in Buffalo Niagara and share it as widely as possible,” noted McGee.  “Nationally, Buffalo is not always recognized for its importance in innovation and scientific achievement. I’ve been focusing my attention on correcting this oversight since my; ‘The Future is History‘ Space Age exhibit back in 2013.”


“Tesla achieved his lifelong dream and the pinnacle of his career in Buffalo Niagara – the birth of the Electric Age! This achievement was a major turning point in world history that still impacts the daily lives of billions of people. Nikola Tesla’s goal in life, imagined as a young man was to get to Niagara Falls so he could install his AC-powered turbines to capture and distribute power worldwide, a watershed moment in the course of civilization.” –

Buffalo Niagara Tesla Festival Presents:

“Nikola Tesla: Electric Circus” Friday, September 22, 2017 6pm-midnight (Autumn Equinox)

Tesla themed extravaganza in a sprawling Old First Ward (near Gene McCarthy’s) turn-of-the-century barrel factory fabulously reimagined as the Lakeward Spirits Distillery and Events Center

Art Party from 8pm-midnight: artist Installations, Tesla Coil, projections, live electronic music + DJs, dancers, performance art, poetry and much more! The man himself will arrive in a Tesla at 6:30pm to a red carpet greeting and press conference.

Join the Electric Circus for a Victorian-inspired night of creativity and innovation with Buffalo-Niagara Tesla Festival. A multi-disciplinary art party will celebrate the life and legacy of Nikola Tesla in WNY and Buffalo as the world’s first “Electric City”, put on by Martin McGee, Dana Saylor, and Tara Sasiadek in concert with ELAB (who brought you CITY of NIGHT).

Nikola Tesla Fest: Electric Circus

WHEN: Friday, September 22, 2017

WHERE: Lakeward Spirits Event Center – 65 Vandalia St, Buffalo, NY 14204


6-8pm VIP Experience $50 or 2 for $75

Art Party 8pm to midnight – general admission $20 ($25 at the door)

See Facebook event

Written by queenseyes


Newell Nussbaumer is 'queenseyes' - Eyes of the Queen City and Founder of Buffalo Rising. Co-founder Elmwood Avenue Festival of the Arts. Co-founder Powder Keg Festival that built the world's largest ice maze (Guinness Book of World Records). Instigator behind Emerald Beach at the Erie Basin Marina. Co-created Flurrious! winter festival. Co-creator of Rusty Chain Beer. Instigator behind Saturday Artisan Market (SAM) at Canalside, Buffalo Porchfest, and Paint vs. Paint. Founder of The Peddler retro and vintage market on Elmwood. Instigator behind Liberty Hound @ Canalside. Throws The Witches Ball at Statler City, the Hertel Alley Street Art Festival, and The Flutterby Festival.

Contact Newell Nussbaumer |

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