First things first! Rail Festival is this weekend at Carillon Historical Park. This is a great time to see some highly skilled makers showing off their model train displays. Make It Dayton will also be there, so you’ll have one more chance to get your official Dayton Mini Maker Faire photo booth selfie before August.
Secondly, we’ve had a lot of questions from prospective exhibitors and attendees, so we thought it was time to launch our Frequently Asked Questions. We hope this gets you up to speed, but if there is something we forgot to address please leave a comment below and we’ll get you an answer ASAP!
Q: What does the “mini” in Dayton Mini Maker Faire mean? Is the event really small?
A: With 65 acres and an expected 50+ exhibits, our Mini Maker Faire is huge! “Mini” is a designation that Make Magazine, the originators of the Maker Faire concept, give to any newer regional event under the Maker Faire umbrella. Once a Mini Maker Faire grows to impact more than just the local city where it’s held, and starts pulling attendees from a wider area they can be promoted to “Featured” and get to drop the “Mini” from their name. Our nearest Featured Faires are in Pittsburg and Detroit. Help Dayton grow to a Featured Faire by exhibiting, attending and telling your friends! Learn more here.
Q: Is the Dayton Mini Maker Faire only for kids? What age is the event geared towards?
A: Maker Faire is for all ages, so bring Grandma, Grandpa, along with all the kids. There will be just as many hands-on activities and inspiring exhibits that interest adults as well at the little ones.
Q: Is this another science festival? Dayton has a lot of those…
A: The Dayton Mini Maker Faire is NOT a science festival, but you can certainly learn a lot of science by attending! Maker Faire is about making and doing – learning with your hands and creating new things. Sometimes that involves a lot of science, but it also involves art, technology, crafting, and many other skills. Where else in Dayton can you build a model rocket, learn to knit, see woodworking demonstrations, learn to solder, and become a certified amateur radio operator all in one weekend?
Q: Do I need to pre-register for any of the events at the Dayton Mini Maker Faire?
A: Yes and no. Most of our activities and events run all day and do not require pre-registering. However, there are 2 notable exceptions – KB6NU’s 1-Day Amateur Radio Tech Class and the Boneyard Build-Off. You can register for a seat in the 1-Day Amateur Radio Tech Class HERE, and you can apply for a Boneyard Build-Off team HERE.
Q: Can I buy tickets in advance?
A: We are working on setting up advanced ticket sales at Mendelson’s, MCM Electronics and Proto BuildBar. Stay tuned for more details! Of course, you can always buy a ticket day-of at the door, or purchase a Dayton History Membership for yourself or your family which gives you access not only to the Dayton Mini Maker Faire but all the other awesome festivals and events at Carillon Historical Park.
Q: Will there be places to eat at Maker Faire? Can I bring a lunch?
A: Yes! Culp’s Cafe, Carillon Brewing Co. and many other food options will be available inside the park. You are also welcome to bring a packed lunch and take advantage of the picnic shelters on site. For more information visit daytonhistory.org.
Q: My iguana loves to crochet, can I bring him to the Dayton Mini Maker Faire?
A: While we’re sure your iguana or other pet may find the Maker Faire entertaining, we find that opposable thumbs are generally helpful for our many hands-on activities. We ask that you please leave your animal friends at home and fill them in on the fun you had later! (Service animals, however, are always welcome!) (learn more here)
Q: Do I have to be a professional maker or business owner to have a booth at the Dayton Mini Maker Faire?
A: No! Amateur makers, such as hobbyists and students are encouraged to exhibit their projects too. Professional makers are definitely welcome, but Maker Faire embraces all skill levels because the important thing is to inspire others to get their hands dirty and make something.
Q: I’d really like to show off my project, but it isn’t done yet. Can I participate next year?
A: Who said your project needs to be finished to exhibit? We love works in progress at Maker Faire. Whether you’re building your own 3D printer or creating an oil painting of your cat, sign up for a free booth at Maker Faire and work on your project while getting input and help from other makers! Sign up today at http://dayton.makerfaire.com/call-for-makers/
Q: I’m a vendor for such-and-such, can I sell my product at Maker Faire?
A: We do welcome maker and maker-related vendors at Maker Faire, but we have some guidelines. First, all vendors need to fit in one of these categories: 1) selling products that they have made themselves (like handmade polymer clay dragons or a book they wrote and published), 2) selling supplies for other people to make things (like electronics kits or alpaca yarn), 3) selling a newly launched product they have created as a maker and started a business around (like an indie boardgame or agricultural robots). We cannot accept vendors who are selling things they had no direct part in creating (such as direct sales, in-home party sales, and catalogs) or that do not directly encourage others to be a maker (like home improvement/handyman services).
Q: I can’t commit to a full weekend but I want to show off my skills and projects. Can I do only one day?
A: Absolutely, and you have a couple of options. If you’d like to do a booth, please select the one-day option on the Call for Makers form when you apply: http://dayton.makerfaire.com/call-for-makers/. However, you should also consider signing up to be a speaker or do a live demonstration on our stage – this gives you the flexibility to only spend an hour or so presenting and then take the rest of your day to enjoy the full event. If you’d like a spot on our stage, please sign up as a Performer when you fill out the Call for Makers form.
Q: I’m a programmer/coder/web developer and my projects would be pretty hard to show off in a booth setting. Are there other options?
A: Yes! Please don’t hesitate to ask for a non-traditional setup for your project. Maybe you need a classroom setting for a short workshop, or perhaps a showing a video on our big screen on the stage would be a better format. Tell us what works best for you, and we’ll do our best to accommodate you. Send any questions to firstname.lastname@example.org
Q: I’m an artist. The Dayton Mini Maker Faire looks like it’s all about technology. Do I fit in?
A: YES! Artists are makers too. Maker Faire is about all kinds of making, not just technology. In fact, many of the coolest exhibits we’ve seen are where art and technology come together.
Q: If I exhibit, what am I going to get out of it? What’s in it for me?
A: In addition to showing off your exhibit, the Dayton Mini Maker Faire is a great place to meet like-minded people who share your interests, network with folks you might not have met otherwise, and encourage people to share your hobbies.
Q: I know some awesome makers, how can I let you know about them?
A: If you know someone you think needs to be a part of the Dayton Mini Maker Faire, point them to our website, specifically the Call for Makers form at http://dayton.makerfaire.com/call-for-makers/ so they can sign up for their free booth or timeslot on our stage. If they have questions, send them to email@example.com.
To wrap things up, don’t forget Call for Makers ends July 4, so get those application forms in! You can sign up for your free exhibit space here. We hope to see you this weekend at Rail Festival!