Jul 28, 2017

The Twins Day Festival of Twinsburg, Ohio

Twinsburg, Ohio, is a small town of 18,000 near Cleveland, founded in 1817 by identical twins Aaron and Moses Wilcox.  In honor of its origin, it hosts the Twins Day Festival, the world's largest gathering of twins and other multiples, held the first weekend in August since 1975 (this year, August 4-6).

About 4,000 twins attend, fraternal, identical, and multiple.  Some come alone, their twin being detained or lost.  They are of all ages from infant to octogenarian, of all races, genders, sizes, and shapes, from the United States and about a dozen other countries.

Twins in the outside world tend to dress differently and pursue different activities to emphasize their uniqueness, but here they revel in their similarity, dressing and acting alike, banding together with other twins to form dazzling mirror images.

The festival features live music groups, food, crafts, rides, and exhibits, plus many twin-specific events, like a 5-k run, a twin parade, and the crowning of the imperial court.

Non-twins are welcome, but bear in mind that it's a place for twins to catch up with old friends and enjoy a safe haven from the scrutiny of curious outsiders, not for twin fetishists to cruise.

But some of the twins are quite hot, and a surprising number are gay or bi.  Even the straight ones seem perfectly happy to talk to strangers (all photographs copyright Charles Robinson, except #12, copyright John Robinson).

1.-2. Mike and Matt Gragnani, real estate agents from Berwin, Illinois.

3. Long haired bodybuilders in purple muscle shirts.

4. Ben and Jared from Louisiana.

5-6. Nick and Jim Falco from Elmhurst, Illinois have been attending since 1991.

7. Jeremy and Josh from Louisiana.

Between 1990 and 2005 in vitro fertilization and the use of fertility-enhancing drugs has increased the number of twins born, from 22 to 32 per 1,000 births.  Not that anyone is complaining.

More after the break

8. There's room in the middle.

9. The kings of the 2014 festival.

10. I'm sure I've seen these guys at Dore Alley in San Francisco.

11. Are they identical or fraternal, or just a twin with a buddy?

12. The imperial court has some buffed kings this year.

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