When Maker Media, the company behind Make: magazine and the national Maker Faire, shut down in 2019, the Philadelphia outpost decided they’d continue on.
That year, the Philly Mini Maker Faire even came back in full swing in October. Throughout the pandemic, in-person gatherings fell away. But Philly’s maker community grew anyway; many creators jumped into making PPE (and soft pretzel warmer-slash-mask sterilizers) in the early days of the pandemic, for instance.
And with many makerspaces across the city back up and operating at full capacity, organizers of the Philly Maker Faire have launched an audio show celebrating the creators, builders, inventors and artists bringing their visions to life. The aptly titled Philly Maker Faire Podcast features interviews and announcements about the maker community in Philadelphia and its surrounding areas.
Hosts include organizer and entrepreneur Laura Chenault, Johnson & Johnson customer logistics pro Chiamaka Valerie Chikwendu and musician Jeremy dePrisco. In their inaugural episode, they talk to Cocoa Press maker Ellie Weinstein about her 3D-printed chocolates. Weinstein works out of the Pennovation Center and started the company in 2014, when she was a senior in high school.
“I was in engineering class and kind of thought that I could build anything,” Weinstein said. “It was meant to be a project in my senior year and here I am seven years later.”
In their second episode, hosts talk to Mel’s Butter Blends founder Melissa Lamarre about her journey to creating her line of natural cosmetics and skincare. It started with realizing how segmented cosmetics products and toiletries were, she said: There were women’s and men’s and kids’ and ethnic products all kept separate and marketed in different, confusing ways.
“Why is personal care, beauty and cosmetics like this?” she recalled asking herself. “There has to be a better way, something more universal than this. This has to be usable by more than one type of person.”
In the third episode, the podcast features Kel Smith of Suss Müsik.
The Philly Maker Faire Podcast has released podcasts weekly since June 1. Check out the first three episodes and keep an eye out for upcoming ones by following on your streaming service of choice.
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