A two-day, family-friendly festival of invention, creativity and resourcefulness, and a celebration of the Maker movement.
A family-friendly festival embracing invention, creativity and resourcefulness, the Maker Faire is a science and county fair all rolled into one.
Like other events fueled by innovation and ingenuity, the Maker Faire was born in the Silicon Valley. Launched at the San Mateo Fairgrounds in 2006, it was an offbeat exhibition of 100 makers, hand-on workshops, demonstrations and DIY competitions. It has since grown to over 500 exhibiting makers and inspired additional faires in Detroit and New York City. Community-driven, independently produced mini Maker Faire events are also popping up around the world.
Families are the latest population to join legions crafters, hobbyists, engineers, tinkerers, tech enthusiasts, scientists, authors, and artists flocking to this event. In fact, their participation has spawned the spinoff of maker summer camps and after school programs.
While the bulk of the activities at the faire revolve around crafts, engineering, recycling, building, science and technology, there are some classic major Maker Faire attractions that are not to be missed as well. These include:
•The Life-Sized Mousetrap: a hand crafted, 16-piece interactive sculpture set atop a 65,000 square foot game board.
•Coke Zero and Mentos Show: Geysers of soda shoot over twenty feet into the air in this spectacular mint-powered Maker Faire version of the Bellagio Fountains in Las Vegas. If you want to see this demonstration, go early to get a spot because everyone in the fairgrounds turns out for this!
•Power Racing Series: Heavily modified youth ride-on toys are raced in three different styles of competition; drag race, road course, and an Endurance Battle Royale.
•Cupcake Cars: Small go-kart type cars shaped and decorated like cupcakes. These sweet modes of transportation are powered by an electric wheelchair motor.
If you're going:
-Be prepared to get dirty. From mixing compost to printmaking, there are lots of great activities for kids at this event and none involve staying clean!
-Wear comfortable shoes because you will doing lots of exploring!
-Watch for unusual motorized vehicles, my son was almost hit by a motorized barcalounger!
To find a Maker Faire near you, visit: http://makerfaire.com/map.html
This review is based on a complimentary visit to the Bay Area Maker Faire. I received no other compensation and was not asked to express a particular point of view. My opinions are entirely my own.