Open hours are available from 3 to 8 p.m. on Wednesdays and Thursdays, and from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. on Saturdays.
BELMAR, NJ — Creativity certainly meets technology at the new Belmar Community Makerspace.
And the public got its first look on October 10 at how this new facility at the Belmar Community Center/Library Annex is making that happen. During an open house, some 50 people toured the innovative hub uniquely designed for creators, builders, innovators and artists — a project of the Belmar Public Library.
“We are here to introduce the community to the Makerspace and what it has to offer now and in the future,” said library assistant Luis Pulido, who manages the Makerspace, situated on the second floor at 503 Seventh Avenue.
The new facility includes 3D printers, computers, sewing machines, video and photography equipment, basic workshop and electronic supplies, and a large flat-screen television for workshop instruction and presentations.
“The Makerspace gives people the opportunity to learn something new and creative something cool,” Pulido said, as he showed visitors the various stations of innovation, where volunteer members of the project’s ad hoc advisory committee offered hands-on demonstrations of the technology.
Committee member John Hutchinson of Belmar, an engineer by trade, was busy throughout the open house showing the capabilities of the Makerspace’s electronics workshop. “We have to learn how to make things and how to do things, and we can help with that right here,” he said.
For example, committee member Louise Krasniewicz, Ph.D., of Belmar had a captive audience at the 3D printers, where red and blue pyramids were being built, layer by layer. Also at the station was a diorama from a scene in “The Birds” movie — created from tiny black crows she designed and printed using 3D technology.
And then in another area of the Makerspace, committee member Carol Robbins of Bradley Beach had visitors interested in a technology that dates back to the 19th century — a bank of sewing machines, where fabrics and samples complemented the other more-advanced options for creativity.
Other committee members who lent their talent to the project included Pat Hutchinson, Marc Natanagara and Donna Falk, all of Belmar, and Laura Doyle of Tinton Falls. “They all have volunteered their time, experience and knowledge to help ensure that the Belmar Community Makerspace is properly designed, equipped and operated,” Pulido said.
The Makerspace is designed for people to both learn and refine their skills, whether they take a workshop or class, or visit during open hours to work in their own personal projects.“The Makerspace provides a place for people to work and use their creativity to build on their skill sets — wherever their interests may lead them,” Pulido said. “This is just the beginning. As time goes on, we will be adding more skill sets and projects, workshops and equipment."
Open hours are available from 3 to 8 p.m. on Wednesdays and Thursdays, and from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. on Saturdays. People who missed the open house are welcome to visit during these times, and Pulido will give them a tour and answer questions.
In addition, individuals already skilled in sewing, photography, video editing or 3D design — but need space — are invited to work on these projects during these open-hour sessions.
The Makerspace is open to all Belmar residents, although a Belmar Public Library is required. Nonresidents are welcome once they acquire a Belmar library card for a $25 lifetime fee.
For more information, call the Belmar Public Library at 732 681-0775 or email Pulido at firstname.lastname@example.org.
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