Happy New Year Makers!

Happy New Year from the Chicago Southside Mini Maker Faire Production Team!

As we enter 2015, we are gearing up for another year of making including the 3rd Annual Chicago Southside Mini Maker Faire in August. Look out for further details.

Make sure you subscribe to our blog and connect with us on Facebook and Twitter so you can hear about all the exciting things we have in store for this year.

Happy Making!

Perfect Weather for the Faire!

The forecast predicts sunny and 79 degrees tomorrow with a 0% chance of rain!  We couldn’t ask for better weather tomorrow!  Don’t forget to reserve your FREE Southside Mini Maker Faire ticket-registration begins at 11 a.m.:


Be sure to check out all the cool things happening tomorrow such as:

  • 3D Printing
  • DIY Animal Toys and Pet Habitats
  • Lantern Making
  • Educator Workshops
  • and much more……..!!!!

See you tomorrow at Ford City Mall!

Who Learns via Cell Phone Light During a Thunderstorm?

This past weekend, part of our production team and a couple of youth from LevelUP managed the Learn to Solder station at Maker Faire Detroit. They, along with event volunteers, taught over 600 people basic soldering skills until the downpour cleared out most of the attendees.


Inspired new makers at Maker Faire Detroit learning to solder by cell phone light at Maker Faire Detroit, July 28, 2014

The Learn to Solder workshop has been a staple at many Maker Faire’s because it enables the learner to quickly learn something new AND make something cool at the same time. Learners were so engrossed in the soldering project, that rather than stop learning when storm stole the natural light, they chose to blend new technology (cell phone flashlight apps) with old technology (soldering irons) and created a new sport: Soldering by cell phone light! At our faire, we’ll be offering the Learn to Solder workshops every half hour. Saturday promises to be a beautiful and sunny day, but we’ll keep our cell phones handy just in case!

Don’t forget, the event is free but registration is required. Order your tickets today!


NASA Workshops for Educators Like YOU!

For all the educators who want to include making in their curriculum, we have a treat for you! Susan Kolher, an accomplished Professional Development Specialist from NASA will be sharing the knowledge and wisdom she has garnered during more than 25 years of impacting science education. She spent the first 13 years teaching high school science, then moved through the ranks as curriculum developer, assistant principal, principal, and eventually as NASA’s Professional Development Specialist for the Midwest.

Image of Susan Kohler

Susan Kohler, Education Professional Development Specialist for NASA Glenn Research Center in Cleveland Ohio


During the workshops attendees will not only learn how to make a satellite and a glider, but will also learn how to

  • facilitate problem based engineering design activities
  • teach the science behind flight and space exploration
  • align making activities with the standards

In these hands on workshops, the educators take on the role of learner to experience the curriculum and also have the opportunity to practice those new-found skills as a guest exhibitor at the NASA foam rockets booth!

A Sneak Peek at our Makers

Next week this time, our amazing makers will be busy making lists, packing, and preparing to move their projects to the Chicago Southside Mini Maker Faire. Since we believe we have something for everyone, we thought it would be fun to give you a sample of what to expect next Saturday.


Jewelry making can be fun, therapeutic and lucrative. Visit Beverly Singleton of Brilliant Designs by Bev to discover basic tools kids can use to get started in this ancient art. Experience this art by making your own jewelry with your choice of beads. Learn about additional workshops to further your knowledge.


Humanoid robots anyone? InMoov Rob Otto is an open sourced full sized humanoid robot that anyone can download, print, build, and program. See how far Dwayne Williams has gotten with his robot build as he takes it through its paces, learn about his process and see his homemade 3D printer he used to print his robot. As you watch the 3D printer work, share with him your love for robotics.


Speaking of open source, visit the folks from Mobileduino to explore their open source, Arduino compatible kit that converts any RC car into an insanely fun robot that you can control with your Android or iPhone.  The Mobileduino makes for a great weekend project for the family and doubles as an electronics learning tool. Programming is SIMPLE and there is no minimum age limit to get hacking!

And there’s much more to come!

White House Maker Faire!

Last month the President hosted the first ever White House Maker Faire!  Makers across the country celebrated the  Maker Movement using #NationOfMakers to share projects.

Check out the designs, creations, and inventions that were featured and get inspired to bring your ideas to life!

Find the full story here:  http://www.whitehouse.gov/maker-faire

And don’t miss out on the Chicago Southside Mini Maker Faire coming up on August 2nd at Ford City Mall!  Reserve your FREE ticket now:


Thank you, Donors!

Our Indiegogo fundraising campaign closed last night*, and we are overwhelmed by the support of our donors who contributed $3,677 to this event!  Continue reading