Thursday evening was a busy night for MAKE and makers everywhere. While everyone at MAKE HQ was preparing for our first International Maker Meetup, a group of us headed out to an exciting development for makers in our own backyard: the Analy Community Makerspace open house at Analy High School here in Sebastopol. From the moment we arrived at the converted shop class building, the enthusiasm and support from the community was obvious. The space was packed and buzzing with families, students, mentors, and makers young and old. The excitement was twofold: the space was the recent home to Project MAKE, a high school class led by Casey Shea which previously took place at the MAKE offices and as the newly created Analy Community Makerspace, it will also host classes for community members, starting in January. With students showing off tools and projects, fun things for visitors to make, and liquid nitrogen ice cream demonstrations, everyone was inspired for the future of making in the community.
Project MAKE students spent the evening demonstrating and discussing their projects and the tools they’ve learned to use. The MakerBot Replicator was a popular attraction, as was the laser engraver and vinyl cuter, the newest additions to the space. Many of the tools, including those for wood and metal working, were left from the shop class of years past. Visitors could do some simple making of their own, by soldering robot pins or playing with squishy circuits.
The level of organization was impressive, with labeled shelves and sectioned off areas for different types of projects, including a vinyl cutting and screen printing area, and a future bike repair area. It was clear that a lot of hard work and care had gone into creating a makerspace that it’s hoped will grow and thrive.
The opening of the Analy Community Makerspace is a truly exciting development and an inspiring example for other schools and communities. From the level of engagement and connections made between such a range of community members at the open house alone, we are all looking forward to the growth of this makerspace.
Photos by Gregory Hayes and Gunther Kirsch of MAKE.