CMNH’s 10th annual NH Maker Fest. Saturday June 4, 10am-3pm.
This Saturday, June 4, 10am-3pm is the Children’s Museum of New Hampshire’s 10th annual NH Maker Fest in downtown Dover, and the day will be filled with hands-on discovery. The Fest, organized and hosted by the museum, is a gathering of over 30 local Makers of all kinds willing to share what they love to do, and curious visitors who enjoy learning new things. “This year we have artisans, crafters, robotics teams, STEM educators, authors, podcasters, dancers, tinkerers and even baby goats and a giant trebuchet!” shared Jane Bard, CMNH President. “It’s going to be a fun day!”
The Makers take over the inside of the Children’s Museum of New Hampshire, as well as outside in the upper part of Henry Law Park, including performances on the Rotary Arts Pavilion stage. “Sages Entertainment will be performing magic, and the students from the McDonough Grimes Irish Dance school will also be showing off their skills on the stage,” said Jane. The Museum educators will be leading hands-on engineering challenges under the CMNH Workshop Tent outside in the park, like “Build an Upcycled Race Car” and “Egg-drop container challenge,” in which visitors can design and build a container for an egg that will be launched from the roof of the museum towards the end of the Fest to test its durability. “It makes cleaning up at the end of the Fest interesting,” said Jane, “But totally worth it and lots of fun to watch!”
“Fun” is the word that best describes the NH Maker Fest, and not just fun for kids. While the Fest is a family friendly event, anyone who wanders into the park on Saturday, will find something that sparks their curiosity. Baby animals will be available for cuddles from Legacy Lane Farms. The Port City Makerspace will be launching ice balls into the Cochecho River with a giant trebuchet, and teaching guests how to solder inside the museum. The Girl Scouts of the Green and White Mountains will have their giant STEM van inside the Fest doing a straw rocket challenge. TreeFort Teens will challenge visitors to build the tallest tower they can using only paper and tape. The Lowell Kinetic Sculpture Race will have one of their human-powered, vehicle sized kinetic sculptures on display. Plastic Recycled will be transforming discarded plastic caps into adorable upcycled sea-turtle ornaments that they will then give away. Individual makers and tinkerers will also be showing off, like Steve from Raymond, NH with his 3D printer and his 3D printed toys. Eric Salmonsen, a history teacher from Milton, NH, will be interviewing guests for his EPS Podcast and encouraging them to be cultural anthropologists as they examine items from throughout the history of pop culture. Author Carolyn Watkins will have her book “The Knock” on display, which is about a military family learning to cope with the stress of a long deployment and its eventual consequences. Carolyn will also be inviting guests to write thank you letters to military members. Many Makers are selling their creations, and other are simply there to share knowledge and inspiration.
All that discovery will work up an appetite! Two food trucks will be circled around the upper part of Henry Law park during the Fest. Kerry’s Culinary Creations and Betty’s Kitchen serve up traditional and not-so traditional family favorites, while Kona Ice and Zuri and Ollies Bakery will offer sweet treats.
While the Children’s Museum of New Hampshire exhibits will be filled with Makers, there are still a few exhibits open for playtime. Entrance into the Fest is by a suggested $5/person donation, and no reservations are required. Masks are optional, both inside, and outside. The museum would like to thank its generous sponsors including lead sponsors Kennebunk Savings Bank, the State of New Hampshire on behalf of the UNIQUE College Investing Plan, and New Hampshire Public Television. Other Maker Fest sponsors include Sprague, Albany International, Alexander Technology Group, Beswick Engineering, Chinburg Properties, QA Café, Loftware, and Martel Plumbing and Heating.
To learn more about the NH Maker Fest, including a complete schedule and list of participating Makers, visit www.childrens-museum.org.