Throughout 2014, Open House New York’s and New York City Economic Development Corporation’s Making it Here series has taken hundreds of New Yorkers into a wide variety of different manufacturing spaces to learn about how dynamic the city’s contemporary manufacturing sector is, and how it continues to impact the way our city looks and functions. During the 12th Annual OHNY Weekend next month, Making it Here will expand its reach through two very special programmatic series: Factory Friday, announced last week, and a track of makerspaces across the city that will all open their doors to the general public on Saturday and/or Sunday, October 11 & 12.
According to Makerspace.com, “makerspaces are community centers with tools. Makerspaces combine manufacturing equipment, community, and education for the purposes of enabling community members to design, prototype and create manufactured works that wouldn’t be possible to create with the resources available to individuals working alone.”
These vibrant, creative places are the physical manifestation of the “Maker movement,” a growing social movement that encourages individuals to make things for themselves. For evidence of the Makers’ impact on New York’s economic and cultural landscape, look no further than the rise of artisanal Brooklyn and craft markets like the Brooklyn Flea, or the growth of businesses like Makerbot and Adafruit Industries, firms that started out tinkering in makerspaces before developing popular products and building their businesses into local tech success stories.
Makerspaces come in many different shapes, sizes, and forms, and can feature everything from woodworking and metalworking shops, to laser cutters, 3D printers, and other advanced manufacturing technologies. By giving more people access to these tools, these spaces encourage people to experiment, to try new things, and to build things with their own two hands. During OHNY Weekend, you’ll be able to visit nine participating makerspaces to learn about their different models, and how you can get involved and become a Maker, yourself!