Fab Fest Grand Opening & Ribbon Cutting
Time & Location
About the Event
Spring 2021 has ushered in a lot of change, and there is another reason for optimism in downtown Sharon. Growth and renewal are in the air once again, and it’s time to celebrate the beginning of new ventures. The Valley Fab Lab (VFL) operating partners, Whole Life Services, Shenango Valley Chamber of Commerce, and Laurel Technical Institute (LTI), are pleased to announce the Inaugural Fab Fest.
The event is open to the public and will feature tours of the new facility, youth activities, interactive displays in the Fab Lab, information on VFL classes and how to become a Maker. A Fab Lab, also called a Maker Space, is a collaborative community space for creating, designing, making, learning, exploring and sharing that uses machines like 3D printers, laser cutters and digital sewing machines. Anyone can be a “Maker” – visitors to the VFL don’t need to know how to use equipment. The VFL staff can help with design, creating and how to use machines. Makers just need to be curious and want to make!
This Fab Fest will have the distinction of being the Valley’s first-ever maker festival. Just a few short years ago, to many, the concept of “makerspaces” in the Sharon area was just a fledgling idea. Since then, makerspaces or fab labs have been launched throughout our region and even in many schools. The VFL brings these technologies front and center to the Shenango Valley to better cultivate our rich heritage of ingenuity and invention. According to VFL Coordinator, Jake Morgan, “If you see it on Etsy, you can make it here. This could be a parent trying to spruce up a party, a business trying to lower overhead, a crafter trying to differentiate at events, or DIY hobbyists who love to create novel items.”
The Valley Fab Lab is a collaborative project between Whole Life Services, Shenango Valley Chamber of Commerce, and LTI. It is a separate entity housed in the LTI Sharon Campus building. Whole Life Services holds the international Fab Lab Charter in partnership with the Shenango Valley Chamber of Commerce who launched the VFL. Laurel Technical Institute assists the partnership with daily operations and City the Sharon supported the project’s initiation.