It's okay to be a little odd, a little quirky and to like to tinker with ideas and materials in your spare time. The term for you is "Maker" and your time has come. Thomaston Artist Andrew White just got back from San Francisco where he attended something called a "Maker Faire," which hosted 90,000 visitors in San Mateo in May. Similar to the way Pecha Kucha has caught on internationally and in multiple U.S. towns and cites, the Midcoast is about to get a re-creation of California's event in the form of a Mini Maker Faire on Sept. 7, at the Camden Public Library and Amphitheatre.
White, who often works with found materials in his own work (if you get a chance check out the bicycle-parts sliding doors he created for the Rockland bookstore hello hello) said what he saw in the California Maker's Faire "just tapped into Silicon Valley and the creative world that exist there. Think of Burning Man community, the creative part of it, not the Bacchanalian part. It's nothing you've ever seen around here before. California's Maker Faire is a known entity, it's a new thing, an idea that's happening across the country, empowering people to be innovators."
So what exactly is it? According to the website a Maker Faire is:
"Part science fair, part county fair, and part something entirely new, Maker Faire is an all-ages gathering of tech enthusiasts, crafters, educators, tinkerers, hobbyists, engineers, science clubs, authors, artists, students, and commercial exhibitors. All of these “makers” come to Maker Faire to show what they have made and to share what they have learned."
White said Camden Library staff member Olga Zimmerman was the driving force behind getting the concept of the Mini Maker Faire to the Midcoast and she has been helped by White and a group of committee members to make this happen in the fall. This is not going to be a one-off event. The Midcoast Mini Maker Faire will be an annual community-focused annual event, only, smaller, but will follow the Maker Faire motto of celebrating do-it-yourself creativity and tinkering: “Make, create, craft, recycle, build, think, play, and be inspired by celebrating arts, crafts, engineering, food, music, science, and technology!”
Featuring both established and emerging local “makers,” the Midcoast Mini Maker Faire will be a family-friendly celebration featuring rockets and robots, DIY science and technology, urban farming and sustainability, alternative energy, bicycles, unique hand-made crafts, music and local food, and educational workshops and installations.
Sponsored by the Camden Public Library as its sponsor and the Midcoast Magnet as a co-sponsor. Visit www.midcoastmakerfaire.com for more information and to submit an application to exhibit your creation. Participating makers and creators will be listed and featured on the website in early August.
The deadline for applications is July 12, 2013. Follow the development of the Midcoast Mini Maker Faire on its site at as well as on its Facebook fan page www.facebook.com/MidcoastMakerFaire