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88Nine Radio Milwaukee

Today's stream is sponsored by Maxie's

Milwaukee Makerspace / Community Stories Summer 2012

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For the audio version of this story, click the podcast player below.

It's part underground art, part secret society, and kind of ... strange.  Walk into Milwaukee Makerspace and you're guaranteed to see something new.

Inside a massive Bay View warehouse, its 65 members are constantly at work.  They call themselves "makers," and they create art, electronics, robots, sculptures -- anything you can imagine.

"Really the common thread is you like to make something. And all of our equipment here is all member-donated.  It's actually leased to the space, so it's all owned by the members," said Jason Gessner, Vice President and Treasurer.

From woodworking and welding, to sodering and laser cutting, there's a tool for nearly every project.  The diverse pool of members brings experts from a variety of fields, and the projects are just as diverse as the people who make them.

During my visit, I crawled into an full-immersion acoustic chamber, saw a colorful visualization of the magnetic data stored on credit cards, watched a modified Power Wheels pop wheelies, and learned how to play the cacophonator.  

Interested?  To see it for yourself, you can drop on on Tuesday and Thursday nights after 7 p.m.

For directions, visit the official Makerspace Website.