Bringing the Maker Movement to Waco, TX (Canceled)
Bringing the Maker Movement to Waco, TX (Canceled)
A DIY makerspace and prototyping studio serving Central TX tinkerers, students, startups and makers with tools, classes and mentors!
A DIY makerspace and prototyping studio serving Central TX tinkerers, students, startups and makers with tools, classes and mentors! Read more
About this project
Maker's Edge is a membership-based, DIY makerspace and prototyping studio set to open August 1, 2014. We believe in the mission of making and want to give tool, class and mentor access to the central Texas community of students, tinkerers and entrepreneurs. We imagine a space where thinking and doing are connected and encouraged.
Our community currently has no makerspace shops, yet we have a large network of schools, tech companies and artisans that would greatly benefit from the cooperative experience of creating in a makerspace. The first step is to procure a 3D printer. This one tool can generate excitement and clearly communicate the idea of a makerspace to Waco, and help us create the tools and swag as we seek corporate sponsorships and engage potential members. Also, we hope to have summer youth classes to help ignite the makerspace movement as we move towards our August 1st opening.
Risks and challenges
We have an opening date set at August 1, 2014. However, complete funding hasn't happened yet for doors opening. We are currently seeking potential members and passionate STEAMies who believe in bringing the maker movement to Waco, TX. This Kickstarter is our first step in moving toward completion.
While we have signed a lease, and construction has started, we realize that some tools take longer to procure than others. We may not have every tool by opening day, but we believe we can push through this by having a creative, supportive community flourishing in the space by that time. We have a large group of supporters (50) who are just as passionate as we are in bringing this space to life.Learn about accountability on Kickstarter
After some discussions with future members of Maker’s Edge, we realize that the purpose of this Kickstarter Campaign and our parallel goal of starting Maker’s Edge have gotten a little muddled. So, here is our thoughts and plans.
This Kickstarter is intentionally centered around promoting the maker movement in Waco. Clearly, that’s not totally separate from starting Maker’s Edge, but it is different. In this Kickstarter, we are trying to fund a tool (a 3D printer) that helps us give city leadership, potential investors, STEM teachers and the general public a glimpse of the power of the maker movement. Secondly, (and, frankly, more important to Maker’s Edge) is that we want to get shirts and other items out in the community to build interest and pull together the makers that exist in our community. This helps us to get some advertisement out, but also helps us pull together an identifiable, large community (more about why that matters in a minute).
Opening Maker’s Edge is a profoundly more costly endeavor that won’t be funded by this Kickstarter campaign. Yes, we do intend to pre-sell memberships on another Kickstarter campaign later, but even that will only be a “drop in the bucket” compared to the overall cost of starting Maker’s Edge. The other 90-95% of funding will/has come from personal savings, back loans, philanthropic donations, venture capitalists, and etc. Maker’s Edge has some milestones to achieve before we can say with 100% certainty we’ll be opening on August 1 with a nicely appointed shop, but in terms of generating money, this Kickstarter is a small part.
That’s not to say this Kickstarter campaign is unimportant. In fact, it’s critical. It’s critical because those banks, philanthropists and venture capitalists need to know that there really is a large community of makers that will use this space. This is a difficult effort for them to fund just because it’s a “new” business idea. If we can identify several hundred people buying shirts and joining social media, it helps make our case that there is a demand for a makerspace in Waco and helps us get the sizeable funding we need for a high-end shop. Additionally, although the amount is fairly small, this is a time when most of our financial resources are focused on paying the lease, architects, engineers, construction, and “surprises” that are coming during the build-out process. We would like to get our large orders for shirts and other logo wear going now instead of later. This Kickstarter campaign helps us build community now and in-parallel devote our other resources to the long task of “building out” our space at 1800 Austin Avenue. I’m more and more inspired every day by the people who want to see a makerspace in Waco. You are a group of generous, capable, creative and hard-working individuals.
Some of you have waited a long time for the maker movement to hit Waco and it’s finally happening. So, continue to join in and spread the word. Become a part of the community now, at the very beginning! We’re here to worry about the bigger financial picture...you should get to focus on the projects you’re going to start on August 1st!
Well, it's hard to put into words... but one is "Awesome!" They will all include our logo in some way, either screened or embroidered. And, some items will include the maker motto, "A Maker's Gotta Make". We will personalized for men and women as requested (in the shirts and polos).
As for the sponsorship plaque. This will be an etched piece of metal or ceramic that is inset into a worktable that will be in the common area of the shop. We promise 3 years of prominent placement, as work tables will show wear and may need to be replaced. If they need to be relocated, they will receive a significant, permanent place in our establishment after the 3 years. We want to always remember your contribution to the space.
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