Our Top Tips for attending a Maker Faires
Hands-freeMake sure you carry a backpack and keep your hands free to get stuck in with activities. Pack light and get the kids to help spread the load with their own bagpacks. Remember to keep some space in the bagpack for things you buy or make at the faire.
Survey the landSometimes there is a timed entry to control the number of people in the venue at any one time. Once you're in, quickly work your way around all the stalls to get an overview of what there is and what you would like to spend time on.
Sign up for workshops earlySometimes there are workshops that you can sign up for in advance, sometimes you need to sign up on the day. Make sure you're prepared so you don't miss out. We missed out on workshops at our first faire, so this year we are definitely going for the sign-up sheets first.
Show me the moneyBring cash, most of the exhibitors are showing off the new gadgets, and you may want to spend your pennies to own the latest tech. In our experience all the activities were payable in cash.
Split upIf you can, bring an adult for every child, that way each child can enjoy what they would like to engage in and adults can keep a watchful eye (and off course get involved too). This worked really well for us at our first faire, my husband and I swapped children halfway through the day so we both got to experience different things.
Try something differentWe are creatures of habit and so naturally will gravitate towards things we are familiar with. A makers faire is a great opportunity to be creative and try something you have never done before. Experiment, create, explore
Take picturesSee something you like, take a picture and try it at home or look the company up at home to find out more about their product and what they have on offer
Where to find Maker FairesThere is a main global website for Maker Faires around the world: http://makerfaire.com/
You'll be able to search for a Maker Faire near you. They are a celebration of makers and projects can range anything from knitting to high-tech robots. If you are a maker of something (you don't have to be earning money from it), you may be interested to show off your skills and wares at one of these faires. Most of these events are volunteer led, to inpsire making and creativity in a community, so if you do choose to go and can afford it, help them along, by making a donation.
We've booked our tickets for this year - go on, find a maker faire local to you and do something different with the kids.