Excitement at Maker Faire

 Reflo’s Jose Basaldua shows the Virtual Water Table to guests at Maker Faire on Sept. 29, 2018.

Reflo’s Jose Basaldua shows the Virtual Water Table to guests at Maker Faire on Sept. 29, 2018.

We are proud to report that we engaged over 1,000 guests with the Virtual Water Table at this year’s Maker Faire at State Fair Park on Sept. 29-30, 2018.

It was our first year at the Maker Faire, and we had a great time. There is something ineffably compelling about the Augmented Reality Sandbox that inspires childlike curiosity and imagination in young and old alike.

We heard numerous times, “This is the coolest thing I’ve seen all day!” Many people asked how to build their own or expressed a desire to buy or rent ours. Some were surprised that a nonprofit was capable of creating something so innovative. Others imagined ways they would want to expand the programming. Educators came by to network with an interest in collaborating to share the value with their students. Parents and grandparents in some cases had to pull their young ones away or they would have played in the sandbox all day.

We are proud of the work and passion our team has invested in this project. In a few months we aim to mobilize the Virtual Water Table among schools in concert with motivated teachers hungry for an engagement tool aligned with water-related curricular connections.

Special thanks to all team members who volunteered their time to showcase this novel resource: Jose Basaldua, Mike Rea, Bryn Summers, Justin Hegarty, Wilniesha Smith, Michael Timm.

 Reflo’s executive director Justin Hegarty shows how to make it rain on the Virtual Water Table.

Reflo’s executive director Justin Hegarty shows how to make it rain on the Virtual Water Table.

 Reflo’s Jose Basaldua watches as a family explores the Augmented Reality Sandbox.

Reflo’s Jose Basaldua watches as a family explores the Augmented Reality Sandbox.

 At Maker Faire we also demonstrated the updated MKE Waterscape role-playing game.

At Maker Faire we also demonstrated the updated MKE Waterscape role-playing game.

 The Virtual Water Table promotes intergenerational interaction, reminding us of our human instinct to touch and connect.

The Virtual Water Table promotes intergenerational interaction, reminding us of our human instinct to touch and connect.

 The game design team poses for a group shot during Maker Faire 2018. From left to right: Justin Hegarty, Mike Rea, Bryn Summers, and Michael Timm. We bid Bryn a fond farewell as she moves on to an exciting new job! Thank you for sharing your time, talent, and enthusiasm to collaboratively create something amazing.

The game design team poses for a group shot during Maker Faire 2018. From left to right: Justin Hegarty, Mike Rea, Bryn Summers, and Michael Timm. We bid Bryn a fond farewell as she moves on to an exciting new job! Thank you for sharing your time, talent, and enthusiasm to collaboratively create something amazing.