Over 1,500 in attendance and over 40 amazing vendors! Thank you to MAKE: makezine, AEDC and all the sponsors, vendors, participants, volunteers and attendees joining us for a fun-filled fantastic faire! Our pre-event postings even drew on the attention of MAKE: makezine itself. Read more here.
-Jackie Ballou: Won Hands-On Electronic Testing Kit – Radioshack
-Brendan Babb: Won the Quad Copter, complete with camera – Anchorage House of Hobbies
Saturday, July 27th, 2013
Early morning at the Loussac Library, a bevy of volunteers amass to construct dozens of white mini circus domes. The overcast sky promises little but the energy in the air glows bright in the arriving vendors. By the time the tents are up, booths have already started to fill with the inventions, crafts and creations from Alaska’s first official Maker clan. A giant plastic bin drags across the field to sparks a pondering gaze or two. Soon robots are brought in and a garden hose fills the tub. Water-diving robots descend into the watery sanctum. Large pieces of an artistic sculpture come together and a tank of propane reveals the imfamous Fire Breathing Salmonoid. Numerous more vendors visit one another’s booths, ask questions and scurry back to their stations excited with their new-found kinship.
The patrons start to arrive and soon booths are crowded with customers, onlookers and children of all ages continuously gawking. Patches of blue stretched through the sky revealing the giant hydrogen gas powered sphere we laymans call the ‘sun.’ Visitors quickly searched for refreshments and shade as temperatures reached the mid-70s. The smells of the food trucks and food vendors wafted through the ground and mixed with the freshly sawed wood from the Alaska Creative Woodworkers booth and the hot metal from the blacksmith. Balloon animals and custom made trick bikes engaged many who attended. Several patrons when for a spin on the tall bike, swivel bike or the miniature Monkey bike.
Inside the library, in the Wilda Marston Theatre, several speakers tantalized the inventors and businessfolk in us all as robot demonstrations were given by Dimond High School’s FRC Team 568 and Kiva Zip‘s Speaker, Juston Renfro, shared business success stories in the Great North.
Many participants are already looking forward to next year’s event and coordinators are excited that even more ‘Makers’ will attend. For those interested in becoming a Maker, Anchorage boasts it’s very own Makerspace Anchorage. The group regularly meets at the Innovations Lab at the Loussac Library on the 4th Floor (Old Media Area). Peter Garley, of Arctic Fires Bronze Sculptureworks, offers classes casting bronze, aluminum or iron at his studio in Palmer. For more information you can email him at email@example.com
The Alaska Creative Woodworkers Association also holds regular meetups with a paid membership. Sign up here. If you’re not so much into the hand-ons Making there’s also programming and code skill opportunities. This weekend host the 3rd Alaska Hackathon where the organization, Anchorage Programming Workshop, has instructors participating. APW assists women and friends to learn code, make web sites, mobile apps and more. To get involved email firstname.lastname@example.org
Thank you again to all our sponsors, participants and attendees.