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News release from TekVenture:

TekVenture Has a New Home!

(May 30, 2014) – Located at 1800 South Broadway, TekVenture will soon open at the former American Sweeper Company immediately south of the General Electric complex. Built circa 1949, the building is currently owned by the Skaggs Family who reached out to partner with TekVenture.

As a unique twist, after learning the building received a 2014 Commercial Facade Grant awarded by the City of Fort Wayne, we were contacted by old friend Johnathan Brouwer, grandson of the building’s builder. Brouwer said, “It’s really neat and fitting TekVenture will be located in this building based on it’s rich heritage of innovation starting with my grandfather’s automotive and tire business, to an electronics company to the American Sweeper Company. Now TekVenture Makers can carry on that tradition.”

For over 3 years, TekVenture has operated in a 50 ft. trailer in partnership with the Allen County Public Library. We are pleased to announce that while maintaining this partnership TekVenture will soon open Fort Wayne’s only full-service Public Art and Technology Lab & Workshop.

Community members can participate through unique hands-on workshops and will have access to a wide variety of traditional and digitally-controlled tools, materials and mentors for making things. Additionally, paying members have greater tool access, storage space and, space for projects as needed.

TekVenture will initially open in July operating out of what has been the “retail space” of the vacuum business. This will include “quiet” and “clean” work areas such as large format printing, industrial sewing, electronics benches and new technologies such as 3D scanning and printing. A retail component featuring projects by our Makers will be added later.

Late fall, TekVenture will open metalworking, welding, machining, woodworking, glass blowing and other areas which are loud, messy, need exhaust, etc. Soon after spaces will be made available to businesses, artists, technicians, or others who need work or studio space.

TekVenture is a 501(c)3 not-for-profit, community-driven organization. If interested in learning more, becoming a member, volunteering, or funding in some way, visit TekVenture.org or contact us at info@tekventure.org.

 

Why TekVenture is a Good Bet
We are often asked why should people invest sponsorship and other support for TekVenture when we can’t say who will be our members or what our Makers will be making.

Recently one of our Makers finished a project in which he was commissioned by a gentleman from Bloomington, IN who found TekVenture online. He didn’t want to learn how to use tools nor did he need the fellowship we offer. Rather, he wanted to fulfill his father’s dream of taking a product to market that helps people with balance problems to better right themselves for a more fulfilling lifestyle.

With that, a team of our Makers got together to brainstorm the problem. A TekVenture Maker Mentor eventually produced a prototype used for submission to the US Patent Office and the man is one step closer to fulfilling his father’s dream.

This is just one example of the type of things that have happened and will continue to happen when we have more space for our Maker’s projects.

 

Tag Sale Dates Announced
The owner of our new building was a “collector” of many things. In addition to a world-class vacuum collection, our urban archeological dig has unearthed many, many treasures.

Don’t miss this opportunity for great garage-sale bargains in furniture, tools, parts, materials, used vacuums and other Artifacts and Oddments! All proceeds help build, finish and equip TekVenture! Get a preview of the new TekVenture facilities! Become a Charter Member! This might be your only chance to shop bargains at “the old tire garage.”

 

Where: 1800 South Broadway

When: June 13, 14 & 15 – Friday, Saturday & Sunday

Times: 8am – 3pm each day

 

If interested in helping out at the sale, let us know at info@tekventure.org. Volunteers get access to first viewing.

If interested in donating items for the sale, let us know. These items should be in decent condition and limited to tools, sporting items, office equipment, kitchen, knick knacks, and scrap metal. Electronics or other items that must be recycled are prohibited.

 

Volunteers Needed
TekVenture volunteers have put in literally thousands of hours to bring you this project but help is still needed. Whether cleaning, painting, building out spaces, fixing old tools, etc., we sure could use some of your time. Be ready to learn something new and get dirty during the following open work hours:

Wednesdays – 6pm to 9pm
Saturdays – 10am to 4pm
Sundays – Noon to 4pm

 

Summer of Making Workshops Now Available

We have conducted over 300 workshops or demonstrations for those 12 and older since the Maker Station was unveiled at the 2011 Fort Wayne Regional Maker Faire® – Powered by TekVenture.

Workshops are currently scheduled through the end of July. Get a sneak peek at the new building and 3D scanning at “Scanning Techniques for 3D Printers”, a hands-on workshop scheduled Saturday, June 14. Space is limited so register early.

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