MakeFest Memories 4 – Les Pounder

2 people stood in the discover space, Josha Lowe and Les Pounder
The man himself, Les Pounder to the right, on the left Joshua Lowe who we’ll see much more in future.

It’s Monday and you know what that means, it’s makefest memory time again! The 4th edition already, they’re multiplying faster than Police Academy sequels. In previous weeks we’ve heard great stories from Caroline and Mark S, plus some idiot (me) going on about pizza. This week we have a post from another man who appreciates a good pizza but is also quite partial to a pi(e), be it Raspberry Pi, steak and ale or any other variety. It’s Blackpool’s finest, Les Pounder. The man who got me involved in makefest back in 2015 and our legendary crew leader from OggCamp. Today he brings an important message about the wonderful volunteers who work so hard behind the scenes each year, so take it away Les…

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They say that an army marches on its stomach, and this is also true of volunteers. Behind the scenes of Liverpool Makefest there are an army of volunteers who give their time to ensure that your day is fantastic! Volunteers that help you find that elusive maker, direct you to the toilets, or tell you where the best restaurants are in Liverpool (top tip Mr Chilli on Seel St is the best Chinese restaurant.)

Workshops a plenty were run by wonderful volunteers. They should be applauded!

Volunteers need to be rewarded and the ultimate reward is pizza, so back at the very first Liverpool Makefest the honour of sourcing food for the volunteers fell upon Dan Lynch and I. We had already agreed with a local pizzeria that they would provide a vast quantity of many different pizzas, we also agreed that they would be pre-sliced…..yeah… The first few pizzas were pre-cut but after a while they must have given up and we didn’t check. So Dan and I happily loaded many pizzas into Dan’s trusty car and then drove them back to the event.

The back of a car loaded top to bottom with pizza boxes
That’s a car full of pizza, destined for MakeFest.

Disaster! Upon opening the pizza boxes we discovered that the majority were whole, so we needed to slice them up, but where does a library keep its cutlery? Well it turns out the Costa on the ground floor of the library were very helpful and loaned us some knives. The crew were fed, the stallholders too and all it took was a little trust and a lot help.

A photo of the Discovery room at Central Library packed with people perusing the stalls
The Discovery space was busy all day, so many stalls, all staffed by volunteers.

So when you are at Liverpool Makefest, look for a badge that says “CREW” or “BOSS”, these are the people that make your day! So say thank you and have a chat with them, they will have many more stories to tell!

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Well said Les, like any event Liverpool MakeFest really comes together thanks to a huge bunch of volunteers, from the organisers themselves, to the crew, to the makers, to so many others. It’s a real labour of love. So thank you to everyone who so generously gives their time each year to make other people’s day that bit more enjoyable.

All the photos in this post are from the Flickr album Les made.

Les is heavily involved in the UK Maker scene so I’m going to embarrass him now by shouting some of the cool stuff he does. He’s an educator who collaborated with MakerLife to design an introductory electronics kit for kids. It uses the Raspberry Pi Zero W and contains everything needed to start young makers on their creative adventure. He also writes for many tech publications. Check out recent guides from his own website on how to make your own Harry Potter inspired animated picture or take your first steps with Node-RED and control electronics. You can also stalk him via Twitter to see what he’s up to.

We’ll have more makefest memories in the near future and don’t forget if you’d like to contribute some of your own we’d love to hear from you. You can email us via lpoolmakefest@gmail.com or use any of the methods listed on our contact page. We look forward to hearing from you.

Until then, take care out there and keep making memories!

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