This month in the LAB

Repair Cafe the first Saturday of each month from 1:00 - 4:00 p.m.
Where you can bring your broken items to get fixed with us!
Electronics Hour circuits, robots and computers Wednesdays at 12:00 p.m.

Remember these programs are for everyone!
Youth – Adult, we have something for everybody.

 Our town may be small but that doesn’t mean it is not interesting. There is so much happening every month that no one can take it all in. Savory food choices, art collectives and activities, sports games and music events are among the many offerings. One of the hidden gems of Ignacio resides in a small space on the second floor of the Library. The IDEA LAB is your makerspace and digital media and activities here continue to advance both in offerings and complexity. Many folks believe that the makerspace is only available to youth but I assure you that all programs and activities are appropriate for all ages. In fact for a few months this year we had more adult visits than from those under 18. 

     The sewing group has been very popular. Susan Couch and Alethia Ward assist new and intermediate sewing enthusiasts in learning and improving their sewing skills. Most participants are bringing in their own sewing machines but there are a couple of machines available for folks who do not have access to one. Electronics hour has folks who are learning the basics and then putting that knowledge to use repairing equipment and working on illuminated jewelry. Several pieces of equipment that were headed to the trash or would have been prohibitively expensive to repair by professionals have been brought back to productive use. We are currently considering adding a “repair cafe” to our slate of regular events. Occasionally true experts in the electronics field drop in to share their diverse experience. Many folks are still learning and practicing with the 3D printer and learning design. A few more of the staff members have learned how to use and share their knowledge with patrons wishing to explore this still new and ever advancing technology. 3D printing basics are easy to grasp and can be learned in a few hours but a lifetime would not be enough to learn all there is concerning these machines. Recently we have been working on a project to create a clay stamp for the Dancing Spirit Artist. Original designs can be set up to print on one of the 3D printers and then tested and adjusted as needed. Many design projects can use the free programs available in the IDEA LAB. Another recent successful project included creating a stunning business card for a local resident. 

     The IDEA LAB also occasionally goes on the road and shares knowledge with local schools. Earlier in the year we collaborated with the IHS wood shop by loaning one of our 3D printers for use in their shop and assisted sophomores in water science data collection. Then we visited the HCCA during mad scientist’s day and wowed the students with electronic demonstrations and another day found us at Silver Spruce Academy assisting the staff with their 3D printer. The exciting news that ICL will soon be on the road with a mobile library will have us taking maker programming to all corners of our community.

     As the IDEA LAB becomes more established we are constantly on the lookout for community talent and resources to help us in our mission of bringing people and ideas together. A successful makerspace involves a group of people sharing talents, experiences, equipment and resources in a free and open source community. If you have something you think you could contribute to the IDEA LAB please drop in. Open makerspace hours are Friday and Saturday from 2 to 4 pm,  electronics hour is Wednesday and sewing hour is Mondays, other times can be made with a reservation.