Big Tinkers and Hovershoes: Lemonade

When life gives you lemons, make Community Lemonade in Long Beach with me. Day 78 - We have progress.

Life gave me a lemon so I'm Making Lemonade. I'm taking the opportunity of this unplanned time off to share stories of the many artists and creators in this wonderful city that I love. Come with me on my 100-day odyssey of art and creativity in Long Beach. I call it The Community Lemonade Game.

For those of you who have not been following the goals of The Community Lemonade Game, I will remind you.  My hope at the outset of the game was, by day 100 to find three or four community development roles to replace my one, and parallel to that, to find three or more spaces around Long Beach that might eventually be able to be Makerspaces in some form or fashion.

September 17th was Day 78.  I'd like to tell you about the Big Tinkers Club and the Hovershoes Club of America.

We have been making progress.

There's a single room at the Long Beach Scout Sea Base and Aquatic Center that we can use as a Makerspace.  Now... the room will often be used for other purposes but to me, it's a Makerspace.

A Makerspace is such a generic term, we will need to figure out what type of Makerspace it will be.  Because Makers make anything, it can be a space with woodworking or metalworking equipment, sewing machines and embroidery machines, electronics and 3-D printers.  What this Makerspace eventually becomes is unknown at this point.  The original vision was to have different types of Makerspaces around Long Beach, and that may still be so.  Perhaps each Makerspace will be outfitted with many different types of Making tools.

For now, there are multiple parallel paths:


Making ultimately tries to bring the arts and technology together in any way possible.  One technical platform that has been very popular with Makers is the Arduino.  So we start there.  It's a teeny bit stressful to think of the task ahead.  Adopt a new technology sufficiently to keep a step ahead of the youth and alongside the other adults who might interact with me.  I'm a Maker.  I can do it.  However, I'm as novice as anyone else here.  So I am bringing in some who already know so that we can get a jump start, and that I can learn with the youth and adults in the class.  I hope that some who take the class will become part of this community of mutual learning. 

SparkFun, a supply and education group, is presenting training in two variations of Arduino hardware on October 15th and October 16th.

Hovershoes Club of America - A Making and Invention Club

Making encourages out of the box thinking.  So our club name will be out of the box.  I imagine that the first meeting will include a discussion about why the club is called the Hovershoes Club of America but we're not especially seeking to make Hovershoes.  However, Hovershoes capture the imagination of children, and we will hope to also do this with the club.

Youth 10 and up are invited to join the Hovershoes Club of America.  Meetings will start on October 5th, and run 2 Fridays per month for 3 months from 4:30 to 6:30.  There will be a theme for each series.  The theme for this first series will be announced later this week, but if you wish to apply now, the application form may be found here.

Big Tinkers Club

Starting on October 12th and running 2 Fridays per month, adults and accompanied youth over 10 are invited to an Open Tinkering session.  We will have some sort of demonstration for each, and bring projects to work on.  We will learn how much or how little we all know, and help to remedy that by seeking out and sharing information.  We will decide on technology we want to seek out and do so. Perhaps some of us will come up with group projects.  Some of us will come and still work individually.  We will have guest speakers.  Details are still being worked out.

We all want to progress in some way, to keep learning something new.  Some of us like to do it in groups.  Perhaps we make classes for kids so that we have a reason to direct our thinking toward the class content.  Perhaps we come up with group projects and tinkering clubs.  Perhaps it comes from being of large families.  Perhaps it's because we want to be part of the Maker Ohana.

So.  Progress.  It's Day 78.  We have a Makerspace.

Want more lemonade?  Day 1 Day 2 Day 3 Day 4 Day 4 (2) Day 5 Day 6 Day 7 Day 8 Day 9 Day 10 Day 11 Day 12 Day 13 Day 14 Day 15 Day 16 Day 17 Day 18 Day 19 Day 20 Day 21 Day 22 Day 23 Day 24 Day 25 Day 26 Day 27 Day 28 Day 29 Day 30 Day 31 Day 32 Day 33 Day 34 Day 35 Day 36 Day 37 Day 38 Day 39 Day 40 Day 41 Day 42Day 43 Day 44 Day 45 Day 46 Day 47 Day 48 Day 49 Day 50 Day 51 Day 52 Day 53 Day 54 Day 55 Days 56 & 57 Day 58 Day 59 Day 60 Day 61  Day 62 Day 63 Day 64 Day 65 Day 66 Day 67  Days 68 & 69 Day 70 Day 71 Day 72 Day 73 Day 74 Day 75 Day 76 Day 77

If you would like to contact me, please email me at  info@handmadepenguin.com

Trish Tsoiasue writes about creative and maker topics for Belmont Shore Patch and as Handmade Penguin for the Handmade Penguin Blog.  She is currently playing The Community Lemonade Game.

This post is contributed by a community member. The views expressed in this blog are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of Patch Media Corporation. Everyone is welcome to submit a post to Patch. If you'd like to post a blog, go here to get started.


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