Sep 16, 2016 | By Alec

Books and 3D printing. It sounds like an unconventional combination, but it’s less unusual than you might think. Barnes & Noble, the largest book retailer in the US with 638 stores, is a firm supporter (and reseller) of 3D printers. Building on the success of last year’s inaugural Mini Maker Faire, Barnes & Noble have just announced that they have teamed up with Make: to host the second annual Mini Maker Faire (November 5-6) in stores nationwide.

This big announcement underlines the success of last year’s Mini Maker Faire, which drew the attention of thousands of interested visitors in 2015. Like last year, the event will enable local and national makers to demo key tech products and engage customers with the possibilities of 3D printing and making in general. Visitors will be able to participate in interactive product demonstrations and will be encouraged to stretch their imaginations and creative brains to work on original projects.

What’s more, all Barnes & Noble stores will host a Make Workspace during the event – a tech/educational expo space where visitors of all ages can experience the latest technology innovations. Aside from 3D printing, robotics and coding, there will also be opportunities for testing virtual and augmented reality platforms. Products from littleBits, LEGO, Magformers, Squigz, Strawbees and Brackitz will also be present for more hands-on opportunities.

Make is the publisher of Make magazine and the driving force between Maker Faires. While some people doubted whether or not the Mini Maker Faire concept would be a success, all parties involved saw the first edition as a very positive experience packed with special events and educational successes. It just had to become an annual thing. Barnes & Noble has been involved as a sponsor for several other flagship Maker Faires, including the Maker Faire Bay Area and the National Maker Faire in Washington, DC. Barnes & Noble will also be involved with the World Maker Faire in Queens, NY (1 and 2 October).

Why? Well, Barnes & Noble especially see Maker Faires as opportunities for advancing tech literacy and providing an educational platform. “We couldn’t be more thrilled to launch our second annual Mini Maker Faire in partnership with Make, and to react to our customers’ enthusiastic response to the ‘Call to Make’ by giving them more of the authentic Maker Faire experience they enjoyed last year at our inaugural Mini Maker Faire,” said Kathleen Campisano, Vice President of Toys & Games at Barnes & Noble. “Last year, in partnership with Makers, Classrooms and Communities across the country, we worked hard to successfully break down the intimidation barrier when it comes to technology, innovation and creating and this year we plan to take it to a whole new level of engagement as we reinforce our commitment to promoting tech literacy.”

Sherry Huss, one of the founders of the Maker Faire concept (and Vice President of Maker Media) also sees this Barnes & Noble collaboration as an opportunity for increasing their outreach and promoting the maker movement. “This is an excellent way to introduce more communities across the country to the Maker Movement as they meet local and national Makers, participate in key product demonstrations, and enjoy fun Making activities,” Huss said. “We're pleased that we can introduce Barnes & Noble customers to Make: products that have been carefully selected for this event. […] Barnes & Noble is a premier partner and we look forward to continuing to work on achieving our common goal of introducing, educating, and engaging others as to what the Maker Movement is all about.”

More information about the second annual Mini Maker Faire will be released in the upcoming weeks. Barnes & Noble has launched their page where you can find regularly updated making content and guides. The second annual Mini Maker Faire itself will be held during the weekend of 5 and 6 November.



Posted in 3D Printing Events



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