And Makerspace Shenanigans commence!

At the Mini Maker Faires we are used to putting together combustible materials, fire, electronics, sharp objects. And we work hard to have good safety plans in place to ensure the safety of all participants. Still, this year, at the Denver Faire, we have some combustible elements coming together for which there is no control….

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Pikes Peak Makers Preparing for….?

At the request of DenHac’s leader, Robb, we have put most of the makerspaces from along the Front Range in one Atrium.  Usually peaceful when seen individually, in the wild, who knows what shenanigans will break out when these highly creative, fun loving and a teensy bit competitive people are gathered in a confined area?

Makerspaces are not only known for being places where you can access the tools, knowledge and support to create and build things, they are also hotbeds of creative community fun- where game nights, creative competition and geek culture abound.  At the Denver Faire you’ll be able to find the space closest to you


TinkerMill Team Strategizing…


and experience the warm camaraderie and sharing ethos of the maker movement. But be careful crossing between two spaces – who knows what could happen in the crossfire??

Once you see the marvels being created by these spaces, you’ll want to know where and how you can become a part of these maker communities. Come check them out this weekend at the Faire! They always bring the coolest creations to play with – from exploding circuits to the Artemis Bridge, you’ll be amazed.

And if you are outside of the Front Range, take a look at the statewide map of makerspaces at our website, they are listed under the Community tab.


Meet Visitors from other Planets!

Travelers of Time and Space! Come to the Denver Mini Maker Faire and….

13323360_797809833653772_5111364813268384159_o-2Be ready to run when you hear “Exterminate,
Exterminate!” and see this Dalek coming towards you. 






Hang out with R2D2!20141004 Saturday-46_WEB-XL







Become a member of the Star Trek Bridge crew and play a live action 12087896_926443440742548_8026766821784749053_oARTEMIS game with DenHac creators.






Imagine your next planetary stop as you hear the sounds of the Tardis. 












Come Fly the Planetarium with the Denver Museum of Nature & Science planetarium. What an extraordinary opportunity to bring galaxies, stars, and the universe to you!

DMNS planetarium



Making with Metal

Some very talented metal makers will be with us at the Denver Faire – are you ready to create with them? 

Metalsmith/Artist Ira Sherman will be bringing his Toys that Play with People: perform “toy dissections” and explore ways to connect the electrical toy circuits to mechanical pneumatic components.

The Naja Tool & Supply/Denver School of Metal Arts
Working with copper, stamps, a tabletop hydraulic press and various hand tools, you will be able to stamp letters and form your own designs to create your own necklace/charm/zipper pull.

Get Welding !
This hands on welding activity allows participants to try real welding with a welding booth that is self contained and allows participants to try real welding in a safe manner. Participants use the built in gloves and eye shield to MIG weld (a type of Arc welding) to pieces of metal together. Participants as young as 6 (with parents/guardians present) have successfully welded using this booth.  

Join Colorado Sheet Metal Apprentice Center to build your own toolbox.

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And don’t forget to stop and say hello to our mascot, Pokey the Fire Breathing Dragon, built for the first Denver Faire by Ed VanDyne with help from Holden Sherard and eyes made by glass artist Dina Kalahar.  




Meet the Maker: Artocade


ArtoCade will be part of the Denver Mini-Maker Faire June 11/12, 2016

 Yes, the rumors are true, ArtoCade will once again need Mini-Maker Faire attendees to help us make an art car that will then be included this Fall in the ArtoCade Festival held in Trinidad, CO – September 9 & 10.

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What the heck is an art car? These kooky conveyances are artfully embellished vehicles created by “cartists” young and old. Simply put…… “If you can’t drive it, it’s a float.” So, any drivable art vehicle > cars, trucks, motorcycles, bikes, trikes, scooters, golf carts, tractors, ATVs etc < can be part of the fun. Some vehicles are rolling sculptures that took years to construct while others are cool but temporary creations. Not many rules in the “Art Car Nation”… Creativity is the name of the game.

What in the world (or should we say, “out of this world”) is ArtoCade? It’s a festival held annually on the second weekend in September in Trinidad, CO. In only their third year, ArtoCade was selected as the recipient of the prestigious “Governor’s Award for Downtown Excellence – Best Festival.”ewf 03

Listen people…… ArtoCade is way more than your typical parade. It’s a visual explosion that elicit jaw-dropping awe along with the infectious smile of your inner kid. You will be amazed, humored, baffled, astounded and inspired by what rolls down the historic brick streets of Trinidad. You see, after the “cargantuan” parade the kooky conveyances stay downtown on Main St. for countless photos and an opportunity to meet the quirky and creative souls that made them. There’s also a wide array of booths filled with art, crafts, food and fun.

On the Friday night, there are numerous activities and some pretty darn extraordinary art shows. In years past there have been exhibits called “Auto-Motivation” and “Hubcapalooza” and this year there will be “Traffic Cona Lisa” at Galerie Vivante. Also there is the mostly impromtu gathering of art cars on Main St. After the art shows, there’s an opportunity to hang out with the cartists at BRIX sports bar for some good grub, adult beverages and witty banter.

On Saturday night after the parade and the afternoon madness, the fun shifts kicks into high gear at the CarDango Dance/Party/Circus/Revue. This gala includes 2 bands (“Vehicle” and “Crystal & the Curious”), some truly unique performances, dancing, and odd acts (like the Firecracker Hats) that will delight and amaze you. Note: This is an evening of entertainment not recommended for children >>> That should tell you something. It costs only $20-$25 for what is guaranteed to be a memorable evening of the unexpected.

So Mini-Maker Faire folks…….. Come on down to the Denver Mini Maker Faire on June 11/12 and be part of the fun. We need your help in making a brand new art car for ArtoCade 2016. Then in September, you and all you friends can come be part of the most absolutely “carvelous” festival in all the land.

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AVC and SparkFun – fueling DIY fun!

AVCHave you always wanted to enter or attend SparkFun’s Automated Vehicle Competition (AVC)? Now in its 8th year, the AVC gets bigger and more fun every time. Happily for those of you wishing for a little more time to get your team and vehicle together, AVC has been moved to September 17th in 2016!

Traveling around the Front Range talking with makers, I am struck by how making and SparkFun are completely intertwined.  Last week, talking with a Robotics maker about his new arm design “I started with a SparkFun controller…”, then off to the Intel Makers/IoT Hackathon meetup “one of our preferred kits is the SparkFun…”, and talking with wearable fashion creators “we incorporate the SparkFun lily pads in…”.  SparkFun truly does fuel the DIY movement.sparkfun logo

As we spend a lot of time in maker and STEAM organizations, I also view firsthand what a fantastic corporate citizen SparkFun is. Just about every event or organization I visit has some participation from SparkFun and their team members – makerspaces, Girls in STEM, youth maker programs, museum programs, classes. We deeply appreciate how generous the team is with their time and technology across the maker community.

Check out this fascinating video of SparkFun’s Founder and CEO Nathan Seidle along with Ross Ingram, Community Manager of Sphero and Erik Schweikardt, Founder and CEO of Mod Robotics talking about the cross section of play and tech innovation.   This talk was given during the 2015 Denver Mini Maker Faire. SparkFun has been a founding and continuing sponsor of the NoCo and Denver Mini Maker Faires since our inception in 2013. Their booth is always one of the most popular and we can’t wait to see what they bring this year to the Denver Museum of Nature and Science on June 11/12!

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Creating Music on the Big Screen!

We’re excited to bring to the Denver Mini Maker Faire an interactive, digital music project created by Serenity Forge.  Participants at the Faire will have a larger-than-life experience making music in concert with the DMNS wall of digital screens.  Using the motion of your arms and hands, Denver Faire participants will create magical lines on a screen that interact with falling objects to generate music. Watch and listen as the objects bounds around the lines, creating a symphony of sounds that come together like magic.


Are you a maker of amazing things that would like to join Serenity Forge and many more creative makers at the DMNS for the 3rd annual Denver Mini Maker Faire? The Call for Makers is Open – click on the Makers page to learn more.

This amazing project is developed by Colorado’s own Serenity Forge. Serenity Forge aims to bring value to your life by creating meaningful interactive experiences that challenge the way you think. Video games can be so much more than just games. We believe that they can become a vital part of art, culture, and education. Ultimately, we are in the business of improving people’s lives.

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The Call for Makers is Open!

On June 11/12 the third annual Denver Mini Maker Faire returns to the


Are you ready to join this exceptional tribe of makers and creators?

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Lumenexus Interactive Light and Sound Sculpture
Created by a team based in Solid State Depot including John English, Kevin McWilliams, Austin Glaser and Claire Lay.

Strut your stuff in front of 5000+ attendees over this two-day extravaganza of making. This unique, family-friendly event draws makers from across Colorado and over 13 states to celebrate their unbridled curiosity, engineering/building skills, and creativity. Our theme for 2016 is Building the Future – so we are developing exhibits that show the future of wearable tech, interactive gaming, biotech, fabrication technologies and more. The Denver Mini Maker Faire team is looking for a wide variety of eclectic, diverse and out-of-the-box ideas that highlight the tinkerer spirit.

“Inspiring people of all ages to actively create, invent, and problem solve is part of our mission,” said Nathan Seidle, Founder and CEO of SparkFun Electronics. “We are proud of our ongoing work with The Denver Mini Maker Faire–this event is not about a one-weekend experience, it is about connecting people to leading-edge technology and motivating them to innovate for the future.”

Show off something from the categories below – or make up your own!

Engineering and Building:
Last year we had the TrotBot created by a youth engineer club, a city built of cardboard and LEDs, metals arts and sculptures. What are you dreaming up this year?

Fashion Forward and Wearable Tech:
Tech fashion, RAFT’s recycled fashion creations, CosPlay, unique textiles

Inventors Fun & Games:
Inventors Design Studio, lifesized Interactive arcade games, Toy Hack

Rocket and Robots:
Robotics experiences, aerospace, rocket propulsion, Drones and things that Fly.

Tech tinkerers:
Electronics, Arduino, Raspberry Pi and the amazing things you do with them!

STEAM Celebration:
Innovation in education and youth STEAM projects (STEM + A for Arts).

Mad Scientists:
Denver Mad Scientists, Colorado Labs – NIST, NCAR, CIRES…science exhibitors

Character Creators and Creative Arts:
R2D2s, Stormtroopers, Daleks, TARDIS, Urban arts and Art Cars

Design and Fabrication:
From 3D design to creating with tools such as metal working, woodcrafting, CNC milling, welding

This is a hands-on event, so please have your exhibit be something that demonstrates making. If you want to discuss your ideas to exhibit or already know what you are working on, hit the MAKE button and tell us all about your awesome project!

The Call for Makers is open from now through March 30. After this date we will accept projects on a space available basis up through May 15. Last year our maker spaces filled up early – don’t wait to let us know you are interested. Don’t be shy about putting your project in, we’ll give you a call and talk through your creative ideas before confirming your space at the Faire.

The Denver Mini Maker Faire is generously supported by Presenting Sponsors SparkFun Electronics, The Denver Museum of Nature & Science, and Make Magazine as well as builder sponsor Epilog Laser.  The Denver Mini Maker faire is independently produced by the Colorado Maker Hub 501(c)3 in collaboration with Maker Media.

Apply to Exhibit as a Maker:


A Maker Christmas!

What a Maker Christmas we are having!

Last night we visited a maker’s musical christmas light show – check it out here.

When we got home it was clear one of the cat’s had attacked the tree and my family stained glass ornament was broken.  Thanks to our handy dandy Sparkfun soldering iron that was quickly fixed and back on the tree.

IMG_0599This morning I woke up to a wonderful laser engraving of one of my favorite photos of my daughter.  Thanks to my husband Ed VanDyne with help from Joel at the Loveland Creator Space and Epilog Laser!  Wow, what a gift!

And this evening we are hosting a makers Christmas dinner with makers from around the Front Range.

However  you are spending this  holiday – we hope it is merry. We are grateful for our amazing maker community and look forward to seeing you soon!

You haven’t heard much from us this month because we’ve been working hard on a bunch of exciting things for 2016. Next week we’ll unveil it all!

Come up for Sunday Fun at the NoCo Mini Maker Faire!

Yesterday, October 10th, was Colorado Maker Day and the creators were out in force at the NoCo Mini Maker Faire.  Still going on today from 10-5!  Here is Dave Taylor’s Go Fatherhood blog on his day at the Faire.   Take a look at some of the cool things you can do today and the amazing speakers still to come!

Talk with Inventors and find out the Winner of the Inventor’s Showcase at 1pm! 

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Check out a B25 bomber simulation or fly a MESA ARC foam flyer!

Play life sized versions of your favorite arcade games or pilot the Starship Enterprise!

Come in costume and meet with Steamship captains, Tardis creators, R2D2 and more.  Check out a Jurassic park Jeep and a landspeeder!

Compete in the Rover Rally!

We are here from 10-5 today and the price for a day of fun is less than going to a movie. And much more interesting.  Come join us!!

Pluto, Patents, Physics and Play – Oh My!

Check out these workshops and presentations that will delight the curious, engage the philosophical, and amaze the scientific!

Pluto New Horizons Mission briefing in a joint presentation with Build your own SpaceBling workshop
Kimberly Ennico Smith, deputy Project Scientist on the New Horizons Pluto Fly-By with NASA/Southwest Research Institute has teamed up with Susanna Speier, space jewelry creator on Sunday October 11th.
Kim will answer questions and discuss the New Horizons Pluto mission while Susanna Speier leads the Build your own Space Bling Workshop.  During the Build your own SpaceBling workshops Susanna provides materials for kids who want to design their own necklaces and keychains using resin pendants built from the New Horizons spacecraft line drawings.

Every mad scientist needs a scope and heres how
you can get a free one
Eric Bogatin, Dean of Signal Integrity Academy

Craft Works: Stitching Together Digital and Analog Media with Free and Open Source Software
JR Nielsen is the co-creator of Dototot and co-producer of The Hello World Program.  He seeks to educate and empower young and old to make their own media and engage critically with contemporary advances in technology. As a proponent of open-source technology, most of his creative works are produced on Linux-based machines using free and open-source software.

Lazy Person’s Book Club
Sharon Glassman will be performing an episode and songs from her STEAM-powered romcom, Blame It On Hoboken, whose brainy, visionary main character, tour guide Caroline Cates, is using Euclid’s Proof of Perfect Numbers to find true love and happiness on a deadline. She’ll also answer questions on how/why mixing science, math and performing arts is such a powerfully fun combo…and why breaking the rules = making art.

Re-building the B25 Bomber
Scott McEwan and Young Aviators Club
Follow the experiences of Scott and the youth makers and their mentos that have built the forward third of a full-scale North American B25J “Mitchell” bomber from scratch. Through this project the young aviators (YAs) learned how to handle aluminum, measure, cut, drill, debur, rivet, and use power and hand powered tools, just like “Rosie the Riveter” did during WWII.     

It Doesn’t Matter
As a 13 year old maker, 
Katt Hendershott embodies her topic, It Doesn’t Matter. One of the great revolutions of the maker movement is that your age, size, gender, color or income level don’t matter.  What matters is your curiosity, creativity, and capabilities.  Come and be inspired on what you can do!    

Katt is in the gifted and talented program at school, and active member in Technology Student Association, and resident expert on the laser cutter at denhac. She is building a high tech cosplay for the upcoming Supernatural convention and hosted her own booth teaching visitors on glow science at the Denver Mini Maker Faire at the Denver Museum for Nature & Science.

Maker’ a Business: Taking Your Wares to Market
In this interactive talk, Ariana Friedlander shares the 6 counter-intuitive things she has learned about building and growing a viable business in the 21st century marketplace. Makers will walk away enlightened and enlivened, as they develop a deeper understanding of how to turn an idea into a business.

Ariana Friedlander, MPA is the Founder and Principal for Rosabella Consulting, LLC and has over 11 years of experience working with small businesses, nonprofits and government agencies to create strategies for successful organizational growth.  Ariana specializes in translating complex ideas to simple, comprehensible points and finding connections when duality appears to be the norm. 

Confessions of a Fiber Addict
Lori Lynn Barker

This is just a sampling of the amazing workshops and presentations coming to the NoCo Mini Maker Faire.  Check out the full list and the schedule under Makers/Speakers on this website.