Dig Baton Rouge

DIY Magic

By Tara Bennett

Michael Brandyberry is a jack of all trades when it comes to technology. At the East Baton Rouge Parish Library, he is the Maker Space Technology Engineer, has developed a 3D printing program for the library, teaches classes on 3D printing, and anytime there is new technology, he tests it out. Another of his many jobs is serving as the project coordinator for the Baton Rouge Mini Maker Faire. The annual Baton Rouge Mini Maker’s Faire makes its return to East Baton Rouge Parish Library this weekend on Saturday, Sept. 26. The faire will be held from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. at the EBR library and is free to the public.

“I think it’s a really great way to show how the Baton Rouge library system has changed with the times to offer exciting new things to their patrons while retaining the more traditional services,” said Brandyberry.

Considered as part science fair, part craft show, and part something new entirely, the Mini Maker Faire brings in people of all ages who define themselves as tech enthusiasts, artists, engineers, and inventors. The Baton Rouge event was inspired by the Maker Faire in the San Francisco Bay Area in 2006, which demonstrated huge popularity among those interested in DIY. Baton Rouge saw its own success as more than 3,000 people attended the first Mini Maker Faire held last year. According to Brandyberry, he’s expecting the number of people to increase this year.

“It was the single biggest event the library had ever done,” said Brandyberry. “In terms of attendance it blew pretty much anything else they had done out of the water.”

The event will be full of interactive displays and projects from Makers right here in our own community, including robotics, 3-D printing, textiles, soldering, crafts, and more. Last year there were 50 exhibitors and this year there are over 80 exhibitors with many returning from the first year, as well as brand new. Some of the returning makers include Doug Staas and Emily Dilts with their flame cannon that will shoot a huge ball of propane in the air at random. They will also perform fire poi at this year’s faire.

“I always love the fire cannon,” said Brandyberry. “I did make time to hit the big red button and that was great.”

Food trucks will also be on site, including Arceneaux’s, Cupcake Allie, Pullin’ Pork and Taco de Paco. Presentations will also be held throughout the duration of the faire with Brandyberry holding a session on 3D printing.

“I’ll cover what 3D printing is, how it’s implemented, why it fits in the library and how people can take advantage of it here,” said Brandyberry.

According to Brandyberry, the library is a perfect place to host the fair due to the connection with STEM learning that a lot of the exhibitors implement, which is currently popular with children and young adults.

“A lot of this stuff is based around STEM, a very popular learning feature right now,” said Brandyberry. “And we have all kinds of classes and resources that people have come in here to learn how to do these things.”

One of Brandyberry’s favorite aspects of the faire is the chance for like-minded individuals to connect and network with people they weren’t aware of before.

“Not only are they getting to show off their stuff to our patrons, they’re starting to make connections between themselves and collaborating on projects,” said Brandyberry. “And this year when they come back, they’ll come back with something even crazier.”

For more information, visit makerfairebatonrouge.com.


2015 Exhibitors

10/31 Consortium (arts, crafts, kid-friendly)

2-DYE-4 (crafts)

3D Printing for Young People

Acadian Robotics (3D printers)

ARCS: Acadiana Regional Consortium of Steampunks (crafts)

Art by Amber Damare

Atmosphere Aerial (electronics & high tech)

Batik for the Modern Artist (arts, crafts)

Baton Rouge Quilts for Kids (crafts)

Baton Rouge Red Sticks (crafts)

Baton Rouge Woodworkers Club (woodworking, home improvement)

Beaser Bags & Pattern Co. (crafts)

Blue Reverie Metal Smithing (metal smithing)

BR Amateur Radio Club (electronics & high tech)

BR Astronomical Society (science/experiment)

BR Gem & Mineral Society

BRASS — Baton Rouge Area Steampunk Society (crafts)

Composite Effects – Air Cannon and Simple Moldmaking (visual effects and prop making)

Conkerr Cancer, Charitable sewing

DC225 (electronics & high tech, science/experiment, security)

DIVA Lab: 3D Imaging & Printing (electronics & high tech)

EMDM, LSU School of Music (electronics & high tech)

Evasion (video/board game, kid-friendly)

Everything is Possible (crafts)

Floppy Music (electronics & high tech)

Gavin Michelli (art)

Heartsleeve (crafts, kid-friendly)

Introduction to Soldering (electronics & high tech)

Katherine Prejean – Metal Clay Jewelry (arts)

Knock, Knock Children’s Museum (electronics & high tech, arts, science/experiments, kid-friendly)

LA Homebrew (crafts, homesteading)

Laura Teague Jewelry (arts)

LaWit- Scratch Programming (electronics & high tech)

Layar (electronics & high tech)

Life Casting (arts, crafts)

Lo Squalo (arts)

Louisiana Culinary Institute (culinary arts)

Louisiana Rocketry (science/experiment)

LPL Maker Projects (electronics & high tech, arts, crafts)

LSU ACM Arduino (electronics & high tech)

Make.br (electronics & high tech, arts, science/experiment)

My Oh My Firefly (crafts)

Mystic FX (arts, crafts, kid-friendly, costumes)

Polymer Clay & Fiber Jewelry (arts, crafts)

PVC Irish Flutes (crafts)

QuickCure Clay (arts)

RAW BR (arts, homesteading, upcycling)

Rebekah’s Garden Halos (arts, crafts, kid-friendly)

Red Pen Travelers (crafts)

Red Stick Studio – Leather Mask Making (arts, crafts)

Sara’s Soy Candles (crafts)

Scandy/Entrescan (electronics & high tech)

Seasonal In Louisiana (arts)

Silvermari Crochet (crafts)

SJA STEM Lab Showcase (electronics & high tech, arts, kid-friendly)

STEMup BR: Making a Co-Motion (science/experiment)

Tadpole Treble (electronics & high tech)

Think. Print 3D (electronics & high tech)

Thinkerella (science/experiment, kid-friendly)

Tokens of Praise/quilting (crafts, kid-friendly)

T-shirt Screen Printing (crafts)

Vintage Thread Works (crafts)


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