Portland Mini Maker Faire 2017
These photos are from the 2017 Portland Mini Make Faire at OMSI. Scroll through the photos and see some of the cool projects and activities you can see and participate in at a Make Faire.
Astromechs in the ticket line
Thank goodness for these R2-D2 robots that were watching over the ticket line. They kept my boys entertained and enthralled while I stood in line for 20 minutes to buy tickets.
Be smarter than me. Buy your tickets online!
The rusted hulk of an ancient robot has been unearthed on OMSI's front plaza. Young biological lifeforms now swarm over its sleeping form. Some claim to have seen lights flickering on the motionless mechanism. Strange symbols and a decoder card may lead you on an exciting scavenger hunt.
Hall of 3D Printing
Check out the indoor exhibits in the astronomy wing of OMSI where dozens of 3D printing clubs and business have set up shop during the faire.
My kids made off with tons of 3D printed swag. Your results may vary.
There's one 3D printed car race where you can build a wind-up car and experiment with different gear ratios.
Intel's booth is right at the entrance of the main fairegrounds.
They have a table full of Lego blocks for kids to build with, a craft table, an exhibit of soft-circuit clothing. There are robots that you can program with a drag and drop block language on tablets. Try out a 3D game with Occular Rift, and check out their 3D printer that was making little Intel robots.
Look for the throng of squealing, leaping children and you'll know where the bubble machine is now. It makes the rounds blowing bubbles. Catch as many as you can!
Who ya gonna call?
Giant RGB LED screen
Somewhat interactive with different buttons you can push to make sound and change the light sequence.
Experiment with a multi-scale piano and guitar. Other booths had exhibits on making your own instruments.
Learn to solder!
There are several telescopes that you can check out, as well as exhibits on rocks, crystals, and geology.
Lego Bots and Blocks
Climb up on this giant walker beast. If you're around at the right time, you might even get to watch it walk!
Ride the giant bicycle contraption
Make sure to sign the liability waiver when you first walk into the main faireground. Then you can sign another waiver to get up on this awesome bicycle rover and take it for a spin. Peddle hard!
Another giant vehicle
Red Troll Forge
Learn about blacksmithing and check out some cool swords, daggers, axes, and other iron implements at the Red Troll Forge. Just don't feed the trolls.
3, 2, 1, Blast Off!
There are a couple of stations where you can build your own paper rocket and launch it high into the air on a column of compressed air.
Laser Cut Spaceships
Besides projects exhibits and maker activities, there are also quite a few vendors hocking their 21st century artisan wares, from laser cut Millenium Falcons to honey sticks, ugly vegetables, and pine needle baskets.
Wall-E and R2D2
Together at last. And if you ask, you might get a peek inside where a human can sit to drive it around.
My kids' favorite experience at the Mini Maker Faire was the flock of starling puppets that were wandering the faire to promote the NW Children's Theater's performance: "The Starlings present: Amelia Earhart's First Flight". They also had a stage performance later in the day with a song number. Check it out if you have little kids.
Hop on the Hovercraft
Robot Control and Obstacle Course
A scurrilous bunch of privateers are manning a booth for PDX Yar. They have flintlock firearms and grog. Ask them about their childcare rates!
This booth lets you invent contraptions by cobbling together bottle caps, wooden dowels, CDs, and plastic bits. What can you create?
Technology of our ancestors
Several booths focus on the honored technologies of the past: fire-starting, toolmaking, archery, and the recognition and uses of helpful plants and animals. Try your hand at archery and fire-starting with a fire bow.
The Portland Children's Museum has an exhibit that lets kids crawl around and modify a labyrinth or fort made of carpet and plastic fasteners.
Acknowledgments, Credits, and Bibliography