Santa Cruz Mini Maker Faire
Gateway was the first school in Santa Cruz with a maker space, and we’re the only ones with the Maker Faire!
What is the Mini Maker Faire?
The ultimate form of Show and Tell, the Santa Cruz Mini Maker Faire is enter in its fourth year as the region’s premier gathering of makers, crafters, artists, and enthusiasts. Part science fair, part county fair, the event seeks to inspire the public through Do-It-Yourself science, technology and art, hands-on workshops, panels, and much more. The Faire has featured electric race cars, interactive kinetic sculptures, laser pianos, digital sandboxes, boat- and bridge-building engineering challenges, aerial arts demonstrations, First Robotics teams, fire-breathing dragon sculptures, and much more. Learn more at santacruz.makerfaire.com.
Why does Gateway host this super cool event?
Gateway is proud to be the founder, organizer, and primary sponsor of the event. By hosting the Faire, our students see first-hand that the “making mindset” drives many people, whether amateur hobbyists or professional entrepreneurs. This event is an extension of our mission to inspire children to lead lives of purpose, and our goal for students to discover their individual and collective potential to make positive change in the world.
We also love how the Faire builds and connects the local community! This family-friendly event celebrates the creativity and inventiveness of companies and individuals in the Santa Cruz community. Creators and tinkerers to showcase their work to the community, while the public comes to enjoy hands-on, interactive experiences, connect with like-minded people, and to be inspired. Maker Faires support the ideas of passionate innovation, collaboration and joyful connection with others, and hands-on doing as a way of experiencing the world.
Who exhibits and participates?
The inaugural Faire was held in April of 2016. This first year was breakout success, with over 1600 attendees from all over the Monterey Bay area. The Faire featured 46 exhibitors, 8 food vendors, and 11 performers — 95% off whom were from Santa Cruz County. See some great coverage by the Santa Cruz Sentinel.
The Second Annual Faire took place in April 2017. Local company Plantronics — which built the radios for the Apollo missions — joined the event as lead sponsors. Over 1100 attendees enjoyed demonstrations and workshops from 47 vendors and exhibitors, 10 food and beverage vendors, and 10 performers. We began to attract attention from over the hill, with about 20% of our participating makers having exhibited at other Maker Faires previously.
The Third Annual Faire was held in May 2018. Gateway entered a strategic and venue partnership with Cabrillo College, which hosted the event at the Visual, Applied and Performing Arts (VAPA) complex. Almost 1200 attendees enjoyed many new exhibits, including a Drone Racing Course, among the 55 exhibits, 12 food and beverage vendors, and 12 performers.