Author Archives: Emily Puckett Rodgers

Join Us at Nerd Nite Ann Arbor!

Want to learn about why we love organizing the Ann Arbor Mini Maker Faire year after year? Join us for this week’s Nerd Nite at LIVE at 6:30 PM on Thursday (April 17). $5 at the door. Tickets available at the door or online.

I’ll be speaking about why I love organizing the Faire and what it’s meant to me personally. I’ll also be (briefly, quickly, broadly) talking about what it takes to organize a Mini Maker Faire and why we think ours is one of the best in the country.

 

 

Our 2014 poster artist: Michelle Baker!

We want to send a huge THANK YOU to Michelle Baker, of Elevated Press and Michelle Baker studio, for this year’s awesome poster design. She was asked to create this poster on short notice and came up with a beautiful robot, building on our themes of creation, technology, imagination, and fun.

We’ll be featuring these posters in the Ann Arbor area. If you want to help spread the word, sign up to volunteer to distribute posters to places you frequent.

We will also be printing t-shirts with this poster design that will be for sale at the Ann Arbor Mini Maker Faire. One more reason to attend or to showcase your work!

AnnArbor_MiniMakerFaire_2014_Poster-small

Save the Date! Sixth Annual Ann Arbor Mini Maker Faire!

May 10, 2014 marks the second time the Ann Arbor Mini Maker Faire will be hosted by Washtenaw Community College. This free, all-ages event features community members of all types who come together to display their ideas, projects, and inventions.

Soon we will be seeking applications from people and groups with engaging, inspiring, and just plain cool projects. Projects should have a focus on the process of creating, designing, and making – not just displaying a final product. Makers of all ages and experience levels are encouraged to submit applications We will begin seeking applications for makers in the next few weeks.

You can stay in touch with us in a few different ways: on Twitter @a2makerfaire and on Facebook

Tomorrow’s the Big Day

The momentum is really building for the Ann Arbor Mini Maker Faire.

We’ve had some great press lately, thanks to AnnArbor.com and MakerBridge. AnnArbor.com is our equivalent of a local newspaper and Jennifer did a great job capturing the history and spirit of the our Mini Maker Faire. The fine folks over at MakerBridge are also showing their support of us with an interview focusing on what folks can expect to experience at the Maker Faire on Saturday.

We also have over thirty volunteers who have signed up to help us greet participants, help Makers get set up, teach folks how to solder, and generally make the Faire happen.

A big thank you from us organizers to you speakers, volunteers, sponsors, makers, and participants. The Ann Arbor Mini Maker Faire celebrates its fifth year because of you!

New This Year: Speakers Series

By partnering with Washtenaw Community College this year, we have access to a broader range of spaces for our Makers. Those spaces include classrooms, computers labs, and (next year) an auditorium. This means we can offer a broader range of educational opportunities for participants this year.

We’ve invited five groups to speak more in depth about their work with time for questions and answers (twenty minute presentations). You can come in, take a look at their work, listen to what they have to say, and possibly learn a bit more about what they do than you might if you were just passing by their booth.

We’ll have signs up at the Faire directing you to these fine folks’ talks. Many of them also have booths so you can follow up if you are particularly interested in their work.

We hope you’ll enjoy this new feature of the Mini Maker Faire! For a full list of speakers and their talks, check below the jump.

  1. 12:00 pm: Tom Root: Why to Start–or Support–Your Local Makespace
  2. 12:40 pm – Matthew Shlian: Paper Engineering
  3. 1:20 pm – Bound Edition: A New Book Arts Maker Space
  4. 2:00 pm - ATC: Creating Sustainable Technologies for Low Income People Worldwide
  5. 2:40 pm – Jason Ferguson: Rudimentary Precision

Continue reading

Calling all volunteers!

Want to do more than just attend the Ann Arbor Mini Maker Faire? Help us out by volunteering some of your time and energy to making the day a great success.

You don’t have to volunteer the entire day and we’ll make sure you get extra props for your support of this community-driven effort.

Fill out the volunteer form here and we’ll get you set up.

Maker Profile: John Bowditch’s Hero’s Aeolipile

Looking for something historical and fascinating? This year we’ve got a great exhibit from John Bowditch, former Curator of Industry at the Henry Ford Museum & Greenfield Village.

He will demonstrate models of Hero’s Aeolipile (an ancient form of steam turbine), a modern impulse steam turbine, and a melodious steam whistle—all driven from live steam! This steam turbine was first described in 60 A.D.

John has showcased this work at other local events like the Ann Arbor ReSkilling Festival.

Deadline Extended for Makers: May 26

We have some great Makers who will be showing their inventions, ideas, projects, and work at the upcoming Mini Maker Faire.

But we still have room for more! Our deadline for Maker submissions has been extended to Sunday, May 26. Apply here to show your stuff!

Maker Profile: Michael Flynn’s CloudBean

This year Michael Flynn will bring us the CloudBean, a giant inflatable mirrored mylar dome. Michael brings a passion for interactive and engaging science lessons, often building displays that double as education and public art. Image

His CloudBean is a giant inflated balloon in which you can project images, or use as a shelter. You can check out a video from his Flint, MI installation earlier this month.

His installation will be outside on the Morris Lawrence lawn at the Ann Arbor Mini Maker Faire.

Stop by to experience it yourself!

We Have Great Sponsors

We’ve received some great financial support from the community to help make the fifth Ann Arbor Mini Maker Faire a success. We’d like to thank the following awesome organizations who are not just helping us promote the event but also lending some cash to make things happen. Our goal is to continue to make this event as accessible to the community as possible. A big part of that means making it free. 

Huge thank you to all of the organizations that help us make this happen. We are pleased to have support from across the area, from academic programs at the University of Michigan to entrepreneurs and education groups. 

Diamond Sponsors 

A2Geeks

Brain Monkeys

Carbide Sponsors 

Center for Entrepreneurship, University of Michigan

Maker Works

Ann Arbor Hands On Museum

Penny Stamps School of Art and Design, University of Michigan

High Speed Steel Sponsors

Current Motor

Menlo Innovations

This year we added levels of sponsorship to allow organizations and individuals to have more choice in how they support Makers in southeast Michigan. If you or your organization would like to sponsor upcoming Ann Arbor Mini Maker Faire events, please drop us a line! a2mfplanners[at]gmail.com