On October 20, the 2018 Be a Maker—Provincial Highway 3 Experience was held at Hsinchu 228 Peace Memorial Park. Activities included the Five Senses Hundred People Handicraft, Picnic Concert, Pet Raincoat Dynamic Show, Hipster Market, and Township Makeover. Many people came, with both adults and children checking out the handicrafts, going to the market, and enjoying the picnic area. It was a perfect way for makers to spend the day.
Hakka community stands
The Township Makeover Exhibition reserved stands for two Hakka communities, the Gaoyuan Community of Longtan, Taoyuan, and the Nanwai Community of Beipu, Hsinchu, so they could showcase the features of their local areas and agricultural products. The Nanwai Community is famous for its many different butterflies. The Nanwai stand sold regional foods and attracted visitors with photographs of the tallest Sanheyuan in their community.
The Gaoyuan Community ran a mugwort stand. Their community is striving to be “low carbon, environmentally friendly and organic.” Since 2014, they have been building the mugwort industry as their core business. They help local farmers to grow mugwort, and recently signed up to a Ministry of Labor program to keep developing their mugwort business.
In order to prepare the soil for growing mugwort, they have turned unused space in the community into non-toxic farms and aquaponic gardens. At the stand, they sold all sorts of mugwort products like mugwort rolls, mugwort sachets, and mugwort pillows. They have also created unique foods like mugwort tea and mugwort steamed buns.
The meadow before the stage was filled with long white tables. People gathered around the handicraft teacher to make handicraft items to be displayed at the Township Makeover exhibition. The products included aromatic mugwort, butterfly dreamcatchers, textile buttons, and custom elastic bags.
The textile button incorporates elements from Provincial Highway 3. It’s made of the winning textiles from the textile competition. The making process is easy and repetitive, and many participants find it very soothing. You can use the textile buttons as earrings, hair clips, and hair bands.
The custom elastic bag was inspired by elastic bags in convenience stores, but combined with a little environmental awareness. Made of leather and other reusable materials, it can become your very own unique item.
The dreamcatcher is a part of Native American culture that symbolizes chasing dreams. Teachers helped students to make their dreamcatchers during the class. Because the Nanwai Community is famous for its butterflies, they also added butterfly designs to their dreamcatchers.
Over at the aromatic mugwort class, each table had a wooden tool to roll the mugwort. Mugwort is often seen in farming families and is used for its health-giving properties and to bathe babies. The mugwort used in this class came from the Gaoyuan Community, and with a touch of cultural creativity was turned into commercial products. Finished aromatic mugwort strips can be lit and used for sterilization or as insect repellent.
A relaxing, musical afternoon
It was a sunny day, and there was plenty of space to picnic. Children were playing in tents made of ribbons, while adults sat talking nearby. There was also a musical performance on the stage. What a great way to spend the afternoon!
The performers were Rou Ye (葉柔), Miss Bac., and Jiaxian Wei (魏嘉賢). As well as popular covers, they also performed their own music.
All the handicraft items you can buy
Apart from the handicraft, performance, and picnic areas, there was also a market by the road selling leather carving, woodworking products, and homemade jam. Many people stopped by to look around.
There were also stands run by Fashion Design Makerspace, the Workforce Development Agency Taoyuan–Hsinchu–Miaoli Regional Branch, and vMaker, showcasing their works and bringing even more content to the event.
Hsinchu Be a Maker 2018 was a great success!