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Author Archives: kami
This Jedi Starfighter is being built as we speak. It will be unveiled for the first time on May 4 at Dragon’s Lair for Star Wars day… and then will be transported directly to the Faire for your enjoyment on May 5!
A full Jedi flight crew will be there to assist.
By Oren Connell, Tinkering Coordinator
Prepare to check another awesome box for the Austin Mini Maker Faire! I’m very pumped to be heading up a Tinkering:Open Shop at this year’s Mini Maker Faire. In collaboration with Austin Tinkering School (a Kami Wilt jam) and a few kind members of the the tinkering and disposal community we’re planning to open up 200 square/feet of tinkering madness for Austin Mini Maker Faire adventurers to enjoy.
The Tinkering OpenShop will be an area where you’ll enjoy the freedom to wander through a world of “Sure! We can totally do that!” as opposed to “Gee, I don’t know that sounds impossible…” You’ll get some real tools, real materials, and a helping hand to make sure your adventure is safe and fun. I promise y’all (all ages welcome) will love ripping some old stuff to shreds and then re-using it to make something for yourself!
On hand we’ll have a wide variety of raw materials. These will include bits of wood, cardboard, plastic, and a standard supply of goodies that any Tinkerer could need. We also have a large pile of “dead” electronics to tear into! We hope to pirate dials, switches, motors, circuit boards, fans, wire and a whole bunch of other excellent gems from these “raw” materials. Then you’re free to build whatever strikes your fancy.
by Teri Sperry
One of the most exciting new features of this year’s Austin Mini Maker Faire, and one I’m especially proud to be involved in, is the Sustainable Village. Sponsored by the visionary and award-winning Texas Disposal Systems, this group of Eco-Makers takes the DIY mindset to another level, showing us clever, fun, and responsible ways to build and grow, recycle and upcycle, generate and regenerate.
You’ll find the Sustainable Village under the huge west canopy of the Palmer Events Center. Beyond the ingeniously engineered electric cars, you’ll encounter wearable solar generators, a solar tracker made from a boy’s BMX bike, “practical and impractical” bikes made from scrap frames and recycled parts, innovative compost solutions, and a neighborhood’s own mobile gardening toolshed. You’re invited to roll up your sleeves and learn to build and plaster an adobe-like wall of Compressed Earth Blocks. And be sure to catch the presentation on Austin’s first food forest (inside on the speaker’s stage at 11:20).
Kids of all ages will have a chance to model geodesic domes, build miniature windmills, and more. You’ll also find out about local after-school and summer camp programs that teach kids about green technology, permaculture, and sustainable farming.
Just what do we mean by “sustainable”? While there’s no universally agreed-upon definition, a common theme is interconnectedness. My favorite summary goes like this: “Sustainable communities foster commitment to place, promote vitality, build resilience to stress, act as stewards, and forge connections beyond the community.”
That’s exactly what we aim to do at the Austin Mini Maker Faire on May 5— and far into the future. As event producer Kami Wilt explains, “We envision the Faire as an opportunity for great minds and Makers to cross-pollinate, injecting sustainable thinking and methods into other kinds of projects and also, of course, exciting and educating the public about the possibilities of sustainable living in fun and hands-on ways.”
Join us at the Faire, stop by the Village, maybe get your hands a little dirty, and help Make It Sustainable!
Introducing… Lisa Chouinard of Feto Soap! You WILL see her at the Faire, your kids (or you!) WILL want to make a piece of customized soap (choose the color, scent, and toy to go inside!)… such a fantastic activity that everyone loves!
Melissa Knight will be in the Mega Clothing Swap and Chop section collaborating with Faire-goers on a fabric collage using fabric from the swap. Then she’ll be giving it away via lottery at the end of the day… so cool!