Maker Faire Memories

After almost 9 months of ambitious design work, blasting music in the machine shop, late night chipotle runs, and countless re-done laser cut parts, the DPEA seniors presented their whirlwind of a project, the Physics Arcade, last weekend at the 2016 Bay Area Maker Faire. Below are some highlights from the crazy, exhausting, inspiring 5 day field trip.

Thursday and Friday were spent setting up the tent and furiously working on kiosks to bring them as close as possible to being finished.

Then the crowds started rolling in. To say the least, people were very impressed. “These are the smartest kids I have ever met,” said one man to his friend. “I would spend the rest of my life as a teenager if I could go to this high school,” said another.

image00“We don’t even have kids yet, but we might have to so they can go to this program.”

image10“The best part of this exhibit is that it is still being built and when something doesn’t work you jump in and try to figure it out! That is why your tent is the best one here!”

“This is literally the most impressive exhibition I’ve seen in the whole faire.”

image13“Get away from regular people before they burn you as a witch because there is no physics that can explain that.”

“Are you going to do a version of this for adults? Cause I want to do this, man!”

image04“This is amazing! I’m a physicist and this is the greatest thing I have ever seen. I love this!”

“Bosco [the area manager] told us we HAD to come see this. We can’t believe it even though we are standing right here!”
image11“If iI had this educational experience I wouldn’t have dropped out of high school.”

“Look at those kids. They are the ones we will be working for.”
image14We also brought along last year’s Carousel of Physics to share in its finished state.

image16Despite all of the hard work, there was still time for breaks to play cards.

image32And to take power naps.

image23Students could pick between two dinner restaurants on the second night, which brought out some competition. Which would you prefer: a delicious fajita taco bar…

image01…Or bacon mac and cheese and sliders?

image28Students at the sliders restaurant also got to play Cornhole, where, true to the engineering spirit, they fixed a broken board by shoving Shane Murphy’s shoe under one corner of the board.

image09Collecting all of the free buttons, stickers, bags, and T-shirts also became a competition, and students scoured the entire faire to find the rarest items. (Shoutout to that ultra rare yellow airplane button!)

image15Eli Wopat found a creative sitting position to solve a problem that comes with being 6’5” on a cramped air bus.

image08There was also time for fun activities on the trip. Some students won huge prizes at the arcade.

image26And Mrs. Hemsley, John Clark, Kylie McCue, and Ryan Marley ended mini-golf in an epic 4-way tie, and had to split their already meager $8 earnings between the four of them.


Though there were some unexpected problems and plenty of work to do…

image17…The trip was overall a total success and a ton of fun!
image25In the end, we won four(!!) Editor’s Choice awards and one Best in Class ribbon.

image30It was sad to leave, but 8 students stayed late on Sunday night to pack everything up and head back home after an incredible weekend.

Though our tent was clearly the best (I may be slightly biased), there were hundreds of other amazing exhibits at Maker Faire; some are shown below.
image05One room had all the lights turned out and featured a forest of inflatable, glowing trees.

image03A Van de Graaff generator made people’s hair stand up on end. (Safety first! She was standing on a plastic bucket to avoid being grounded and getting a nasty shock)

image18The Flaming Lotus Ladies made a fiery appearance.

image02Bigger is clearly better when it comes to bicycles.

image20Russell the talking robot giraffe.

image29Lights make everything look cooler.

And finally, some pictures of the cat naps people squeezed into their breaks during the long days of hard work and Maker Faire exhibit exploration:

Ambassadors of Fun, Serina Applebaum and Siena Applebaum, signing out for the last time.


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