I’m at the New York Hall of Science (NYSci pronounced Neye Sigh) Flushing Meadow, Queens in New York for the 6th Annual World Maker Faire. Friday is the main setup day for exhibiting makers ahead of the weekend event. Staff and Maker Faire crew have been here for over a week setting up the huge site. Getting the scale of the event across in photographs is fairly difficult as the site is so large. For me this really is the greatest show and tell on earth and my Maker Faire of choice to visit.
To put the scale in context the crew have their own canteen and rest area which is packed with bicycles for them to get about site. They have a fleet of telehandler fork trucks, dozens of golf buggies wizzing about. The Faire uses 250 radios across 16 fully monitored channels for the crew. There are 800+ booths (Bay Area has 1200+ and so is the larger Faire) for makers ranging from huge pavilion sized corporate sponsors to individual young makers. The budget for the Faire is over $2millon.
The Faire covers (indeed literally take over) the NYSci site itself and pushes out into the Flushing Meadow park area (the home of the 1964 Worlds Fair). Staff at NYSci have been instrumental in the success of the Faire and it’s a great partnership for Maker Media and the Faire has reportedly changed the fortunes of the museum this being their flagship event. For the first time this year the Maker Faire has setup a stage next to the Unisphere for Eeppy Bird to perform Coke Zero & Mentos free of charge for the public, especially the residence of Queens who the Faire effects the most. The ambition is to push the Faire further and further into the park as it continues to grow.