W.Va. Makes Festival offers $10,000 in prizes to makers of all ages

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W.Va. Makes Festival offers $10,000 in prizes to makers of all ages
Prizes will include a $5,000 cash award to the adult champion, a $1,000 prize to the youth champion, and $500 to the People’s Choice winner.

HUNTINGTON, W.Va. — To celebrate the 10th anniversary of the West Virginia Makes Festival, scheduled for Oct. 6, 2023, the Marshall Advanced Manufacturing Center is offering $10,000 in cash prizes to winners of this year’s design challenge.

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According to Kara Mullins, coordinator of the festival, makers of all kinds — artisans, inventors, manufacturers, and students — are encouraged to enter their creations by participating in the festival on the Huntington campus of Marshall University.

“We want to make this year’s festival the biggest and best yet,” Mullins said. “To encourage more participation from across West Virginia and beyond, we’re offering the largest prize cache ever. People of all ages are eligible to compete for their share of the money.”

Multiple prizes will be awarded in adult and youth categories, including a $5,000 cash award to the adult champion, a $1,000 prize to the youth champion, and $500 to the People’s Choice winner, as voted on by festivalgoers.

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“This is a celebration of creativity and ingenuity in all forms,” Mullins said. “That way we encourage makers of all ages, from elementary school-age children to retired adults to demonstrate their creations, whatever they are.”

West Virginia’s largest maker fair coincides with National Manufacturing Day this year. Mullins urged manufacturers of all types to participate in the festival to represent the state’s rich history of manufacturing.

“There are a variety of ways to participate in the Makes Festival,” she explained. “In addition to the design challenge, individuals can demonstrate their creations, register as exhibitors, and offer information about how they support makers, provide making activities or games, or attend as a school or other group.

"We want everyone who can come to join us and enjoy all the festival has to offer, from hands-on making activities, virtual reality, and robotics to music and even a splat-tacular pumpkin drop presented by the June Harless Center at Marshall University!”

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There is no cost to participate in the festival but Design Challengers, exhibitors and groups are asked to register at . Design challengers and other exhibitors are welcome to sell their creations during the event.

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