Stay tuned this summer for the 2017 exhibitor lineup!


From robots that can throw a dodgeball to DIY circuit boards, the Des Moines Mini Maker Faire showcases a variety of Iowa innovations. Though our exhibitors’ interests and skills vary dramatically, they’re all committed to developing Iowa’s innovation ecosystem:

  • Area 515: See electric cars, 3-D printed projects, clocks and the famous Backwards Bike, presented by Des Moines’ nonprofit community of Makers, artists and hobbyists.
  • Barnes & Noble Makerspace: Demo a variety of hands-on products with Barnes & Noble, including Ozobots, Spheros and Dash!
  • CLenz Designs: Learn about the fashion-design process from sketches to the runway with local designer Cody Ritz. See a variety of patterns, fabrics and finished designs.
  • DaftTrooper Designs: Discover the art of homemade armor through the use of simple, low-cost items.
  • Data-Driven Music: Alex Braidwood has spent the last year turning buoy sensor data from the Iowa Lakeside Laboratory into music. Meet Alex, and learn how music can share its own conservation message.
  • Des Moines Drone Users Group: See DM DUG’s drones zip and zoom through the air in live flight demos, and learn about the important role aerial robotics plays in agriculture, entrepreneurship and recreation.
  • Enchanted Menagerie: This local artist creates amazing sculptures from clay, paper mache, wire, fabric, foam and more.
  • FIRST Robotics Team Neutrino: Join this robotics team from Ames as they show off a robot that competes in a medieval-themed game in which robots shoot foam balls into high towers and cross defenses.
  • Flipped Art: Check out the Tiny Studio, a mobile makerspace that invites you to create wherever you are!
  • FRC Team 4646 ASAP: This robot can launch dodgeballs and hit targets with amazing precision.
  • Hook and Loop Penants: Nerd out with this penant artist who loves to mix the flag’s retro feel with modern fandom. See your favorite science superstars, including Neil deGrasse Tyson and Bill Nye, on handmade penants from Chris Kimble.
  • Iowa State University SAE International: Explore high-performance and eco-friendly vehicles with this organization of racing teams! Get up close with an eco-friendly snowmobile, a Baja off-road high performance vehicle, a Formula on-road high performance vehicle and Supermileage vehicle.
  • ISU FLEx: Experience virtual-reality devices, 3-D printing, circuit bending and more at this interactive station. Rethink your world as you test head-mounted virtual-reality devices, see a 3-D printer in action, experiment with Little Bits Robotics kits and more.
  • Laser Lightsabers: Salt water generators power a single laser – a new invention from local light saber Maker Troy Powers.
  • LT-1000 Trainer Board: Discover micro-controller programming with this circuit board and companion books developed by Maker Michael Landon. Use Raspberry Pi technology to light up eight LEDs.
  • Lucite Geodesic Plydome: This Maker creates a 14-foot geodesic dome fit for outdoor display.
  • R2-D2: See a life-size, working replica of the beloved Star Wars robot.
  • Rain Water Harvesting: Give your backyard an eco-friendly upgrade with these rain barrels produced right here in Des Moines.
  • Reimagine, Renew, Recycle: Upcycle socks and clothing items into new items like plush boys and wind blocks.
  • Steampunk Pope: Meet Brother Barnabas Brass-Boilerplate, inventor of a variety of leather goods, including eye patches and more.
  • String Revolution: Make your own string from almost anything. Watch local textile artist Laura Poresky spin everything from plastic bags to grass stems into a DIY cord at this roaming exhibit.
  • Woodturning Demonstration: Get up close with woodworking, and see a lathe in action as exhibitors build spinning tops, wands, Christmas ornaments, kitchen utensils and more right before your eyes.

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