Fund This! Halloween, A Kid Detective, and the Exploratorium

Happy October! I will be your regular Fund This guide from now on, choosing projects from crowd funding sites that I find compelling and exciting. I am interested in showcasing a variety of creative ideas in science, technology, and art; balancing ideas that are practical, beautiful and/or innovative. I receive no benefits from any of the projects I feature.

I’m going to start off this month with three projects that caught my attention in three very different ways:

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Take Back Halloween

The ladies at Take Back Halloween are at it again. Easy DIY, mostly no sew costumes of famous women in history and mythology. I could not be more impressed with their creativity and selection. Incredible, powerful, empowering. If my daughter wasn’t demanding I be Marceline to her Princess BubbleGum this Halloween, I would be all over that Morrigan costume. I could easily see one modding these down to girl size as well!

Contribute to their campaign to help them offer a whole new selection this season! This Kickstarter has a goal of $4500 and ends on November 1.

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Dewey Mac, Kid Detective Book

Fourth grade teacher Michael Carroll is designing a comic book about a kid detective that uses STEM skills to build his own equipment and solve crimes. The book will include instructions along the way so the reader can build the same real, working gadgets out of common materials as they move through the story.

I could really see kids getting into this idea and feeling empowered as they make projects that allow them to become detectives themselves. This Kickstarter has a goal of $5000 and ends October 20.

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Exploratorium Innovation Zone

The Exploratorium is an amazing museum, in many ways setting the standard by which other museums and science centers connect their visitors to science, technology, and art. They have recently had a rough time of it, needing to lay off 18% of their workers after unexpected drops in attendance after a huge move and remodel. But I like their innovative spirit and resourcefulness. If the public won’t come to them, they will come to the public. Thus we have their new campaign: The Innovation Zone.

This project will bring their unique learning approach to the streets in the form of installations that use art and science to engage the public as they pass by. It is my hope that they will create a blueprint for other cities to bring the same kind of public interactive installations to new communities- especially those who do not have access to this kind of  intersection of ideas and learning. This IndieGogo Campaign has a goal of $75,000 and ends on November 12.