The annual Black and White Party at the Lanier Mansion State Historic Site will mix past and present during a steampunk-themed event this weekend.

The Black and White Party, an event to benefit the historic site, begins at 7 p.m. on Saturday on the Lanier Mansion south lawn.

The event will have live music and light refreshments while also highlighting steampunk, a mix of science fiction and fantasy that combines advanced machines and the steam power of the 19th century often set in an historic setting or a fantasy world.

"It was just an idea," Lanier Mansion State Historic Site Manager Gerry Reilly said of the theme.

Organizers discussed the theme during a planning meeting because of the increased interest in the subgenre, Reilly said. Steampunk themes have been highlighted for several years in movies like Wild Wild West and the recent Sherlock Holmes film.

"We're encouraging everyone to come out and have fun with this year's theme, but it's fine if they just want to enjoy the party in everyday black and white attire," Reilly said.

The seventh annual party will be trimmed with steampunk decorations, and organizers encourage visitors to dress in anything from casual black and white to full steampunk-themed clothing for the party.

"We think it'll be fun to see what people come up with," he said.

Prizes will be awarded for the most creative outfit during the event.

The Black and White Party also will feature live music by the Slick River Rockets. The band, which includes Brook Reindollar, Chip Binzer, Eric Phagan and Sean Dawkins, will play throughout the event.

Admission to the event includes hors d'oeuvres by Paradise Cove Catering and a complimentary drink ticket.

A cash bar of beer and wine from the Madison Apothecary will be available during the event.

Tickets may be purchased in advance for $25 until 5 p.m. on Friday by calling (812) 273-0556. Tickets also may be purchased at the door for $30.