Local organizers are working to expand the spirit behind the embracing of global maker movement by launching the region’s first Mini Maker Faire. The event, which celebrates invention, creativity and resourcefulness, will take place from 10 a.m. – 6 p.m. October 11 at the First Tennessee Pavilion.
The Chattanooga Mini Maker Faire will feature projects, performances, competitions and workshops that advance the Do-It-Yourself culture of making things. Signature activities will include robot battles, a 3D printing showcase, quad copter and unmanned aerial vehicle displays and a MacGyver Competition.
The event will also feature soldering workshops, art displays, hobby presentations and sewing workshops, among other activities.
“Maker Faires are all about inspiring people to stop and ask themselves, ‘Wait, could I make this?’ rather than simply buying something,” said Graham Bredemeyer, director of the Chattanooga Mini Maker Faire. “That mentality is helping drive the democratization of manufacturing, and it’s also very much a part of Chattanooga’s legacy. We’re looking forward to expanding our community of makers through this event.”
Local tech enthusiasts, crafters, tinkerers, hobbyists, artists and performers of all ages and backgrounds are encouraged to submit projects for inclusion. Organizers are seeking interactive exhibits that highlight the process of making things. Some of those submissions may include automated electronics, sustainability projects and large-scale art. To view a full list of potential exhibits or to submit a project, click here. All makers must apply by Aug. 15 in order to be considered for inclusion. Area schools and classrooms are highly encouraged to submit robots for the battle exhibit.
“Being part of a Maker Faire feels kind of like ‘going home’ for tech enthusiasts and maker types,” said Tim Youngblood, co-operator of Chatt*Lab. “It's an opportunity to connect with people who share your same interests, as well as to build community around technology, crafting and ‘making’ in general. For many, it’s also a chance to put your work on display for the first time and to learn from some of the brightest makers in the region.”
The Chattanooga Mini Maker Faire is produced by The Company Lab in collaboration with the Chattanooga Public Library and Chatt*Lab. The event is made possible with support from The Benwood Foundation and The Lyndhurst Foundation. Mini Maker Faire is independently organized and operated under license from Maker Media, Inc.
Admission is $10 for adults, $5 for teens ages 13-17 and free for children under age 13. Students who are over 17 may present their school IDs to enter at half price. Businesses and organizations may purchase bulk tickets at a discount upon request.
To learn more about the Chattanooga Mini Maker Faire, visit www.makerfairechattanooga.com. For details about becoming an event sponsor, click here.