The Cape May County 4-H Fair invites guests to build, craft, create and learn what it takes to become a "maker" at a new Maker Space, located in the Lockwood 4-H Youth Center.
Just what is a maker? Simply put, a maker is someone who creates something. And the Maker community consists of a wide variety of interests and skill levels, from industry experts to garage tinkerers. For some it's a full-time job, while others are weekend warriors. The types of people who identify as makers is just as varied, from those who focus on home crafts, baking and preserving, to electronics experts to woodworkers, welders and 3D modelers.
Many makers are hobbyists, enthusiasts or students, but they also offer a wealth of innovation, a passion for creating new products and for producing value in the community. Some makers become entrepreneurs and start companies.
Maker Space is an interactive experience at the 4-H Fair where invention, creativity and resourcefulness, and the people that make it happen, all come together.
“We’ll be running the space all day, each day of the fair, with demos that will run all day long and projects displayed based on a schedule we’ll post early each day. Projects and demos will include circuitry and electronics, programming, robotics of various kinds, crafts, and the intersection of all these things,” explained Aaron Day, who is the Emerging Technologies Librarian at Cape May County Library.
The Cape May County Library is generously partnering with 4-H to make this dynamic new addition to the fair possible. The Fuzzy Logic Robotics 4-H Club will also be on hand with robotics projects for kids to try.
It won’t all be high tech at the Maker Space. Members of the Needle & Thread 4-H Sewing Club will be in the space with fun hand sewing projects. Erin Peek and Jody Clark, who spin wool and weave, will be on hand with demonstrations and even live baby alpacas and lambs.
“We would love for members of the community to stop by and show us what they’ve made – DIY projects or programs they wrote or anything else,” he noted.
“We hope kids and adults alike will be inspired to take the initiative and find out what the maker movement means for them,” Day said. “The potential for original, inspirational ideas to become reality through exploration and lifetime education is something we endeavor to support in all facets.”
Fair-goers can expect to see many of the things they have come to enjoy at this year’s July 16-18 fair, including livestock and equestrian shows, chicken BBQ, live music, vendors, pony rides and a farm market. But there are also other new attractions, such as mountain bike stunt shows on Saturday at 1:00 and 5:00 p.m., an expanded Children’s Discovery Farm, a 4-H Color Fun Run on Saturday at 8:00 a.m. and a 4-H Friends and Family Alumni Tent.
Mark Your Calendars for the Fair: The annual 4-H fair runs July 16 – 18 at the 4-H fairgrounds located at 355 Court House – South Dennis Road in Cape May Court House. Public hours for the fair are noon to 9 p.m. Thursday and Friday and 10 a.m. to 10 p.m. on Saturday. Admission is free and there is a host of fun events Thursday through Saturday. Limited premium parking is available at the Atlantic Cape Community College campus, located next door to the fairgrounds, for a suggested $5 donation.
Free parking is available at the Crest Haven Complex with shuttle bus service to the fairgrounds starting at noon from the Cape May County Technical School on Thursday and Friday and 10:00 a.m. on Saturday. Buses are comfortable, air-conditioned and fully handicapped accessible. Look for parking signs at exit 11 East off the Garden State Parkway.
The 4-H Youth Development program is part of Rutgers Cooperative Extension of Cape May County. Volunteers are always needed to assist at the 4-H Fair. Please call (609) 465-5115 ext. 605 for more information. Learn more about the Cape May County 4-H Youth Development Program and the 4-H Fair at the 4-H Foundation website cmc4h.com