(This spring, the Hoefer family had their own MAKEcation event, the "Great Chair Challenge")
Gareth Branwyn, Senior editor at MAKE says:
We're excited about the MAKEcation events we're running on Make: Online through the end of the month. Phil Torrone came up with the idea of the MAKEcation last summer, when gas prices were crazy and people were staying home, their "Staycations" becoming fodder for the evening news' econopocalypse coping stories. Phil figured, if people were staying home, they might as well do something productive with their time — get the family together to learn new things and make stuff. Thus, the MAKEcation was born.
We started off this year's MAKEcations with the Teach Your Family to Solder Challenge. We posted a bunch of pieces with soldering tutorials, tool suggestions, tips for newbies, and ideas for projects. This week, we've added the Cooler Hacking Challenge — mod any type of portable beverage cooler any crazy way you like and send us the pics/video. These events will run through the end of the month and we'll be adding another, a special family vs. family challenge, next week. We have Camp Counselors, too. Dave Hrynkiw, of Solarbotics, is our soldering counselor, and our latest author to join the site, Matt Mets, is the Cooler Hacking counselor. They're around to answer technical questions, chime in with their expertise, and to help us in choosing our favorite MAKEcation projects.
We're giving away $100 Maker Shed certificates to our three favorite entries in all three challenges, plus books and Maker's Notebooks to the top 15 contestants who submit MAKEcation pictures and videos. Adafruit industries will also be awarding their soldering merit badges.