Shout out for Fun Ideas to Do at Community Events

We’re due to attend on of our city’s big community events in early September, and are looking for ideas of fun activities to do that attract people over and lead to conversations.

In the past we’ve tried running little Repair Cafés (but most folk aren’t attending and bringing broken things with them), and we’ve also done ‘How to Sew on a Button’, ‘How to Change a Fuse’, but haven’t had great draws.

Wondering if anyone has any ideas from things that they’ve done sucessfully? Could even be a simple/silly game, or something people pay a small amount for to enter to win something…guess the weight of the teddy, but with a repair twist?

Flood me with your creative, fun ideas :slight_smile:


Hi Clare -

I wired up a mains plug with everything possible wrong with it and asked people to spot as many things as they could.

(8 things wrong with this!)

A multimeter and a bag of fuses to test, including just one or two dead ones is good and can amuse quite young kids. And a bunch of batteries to test, some good, some not so good and some bad, likewise.

A portable CD player or similar gadget with all (or practically all) the screws taken out so you can demonstrate disassembly and point out the main components such as the laser, spindle and leadscrew motors, power supply, electrolytic caps etc.

A component tester such as one of these plus a bag of assorted components can be a good converstation starter.

If you can’t find all 8 faults with the plug, here’s the answer:
簺籃籌类籪籬籴籮籭 籹籵籾籰 籼籱籮籵籵簷
簻籃籗籸 籼籬类籮粀 籲籷 籮籪类籽籱 籹籲籷 簱籪籵籵 籼籬类籮粀籼 籶籾籼籽 籫籮 籽籲籰籱籽簲簷
簼籃籗籸 籯籾籼籮簷
簽籃籕籲籿籮 籪籷籭 籷籮籾籽类籪籵 粀籲类籮籼 籼粀籪籹籹籮籭簷
簾籃籋类籸粀籷 粀籲类籮 籲籷籼籾籵籪籽籲籸籷 籼籽类籲籹籹籮籭 籫籪籬籴 籽籸籸 籯籪类簷
簿籃籋籵籾籮 粀籲类籮 籭籲籽籽籸簵 籪籷籭 籱籪籼 籵籸籸籼籮 粀籱籲籼籴籮类籼簷
籀籃籌籪籫籵籮 籬籵籪籶籹 籼籱籸籾籵籭 籰类籲籹 籽籱籮 籸籾籽籮类 籼籱籮籮籽籱 簱籪籷籭 籫籮 籽籲籰籱籽簲簷
籁籃籋类籸粀籷 粀籲类籮 籱籪籼 籫籮籮籷 籴籷籲籬籴籮籭 籸籷 类籮籶籸籿籲籷籰 籽籱籮 籸籾籽籮类 籼籱籮籪籽籱簷
(Translate from Chinese at


I like Philip’s suggestion - linking to care, repair and reuse helps reinforce the message.
Maybe like Philip’s suggestion you could run a quiz with a few similar questions or ones related to impact / repair. you could use. one of my pictures and ask How much material is used to make a typical phone … or How much electronic waste is properly recycled … as a tie-breaker. Let me know I can create something quickly if you need it.

Maybe give the 'winner’s membership or a voucher for your new Library of Things?


Thanks @philip & @Mark Have just found out that we no longer have space at the event, so will hold the ideas for our next opportunity.

Some nice stuff here

I’m planning to have a couple of dead laptops to disassemble, but I’ve got some of those component testers around somewhere, and think that’s a great idea

Tearing down old phones can be a good one too.

If you can get your hands on a Nexus 4, then you could use some of the Materials Matter materials:

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This is an excellent workshop, do you think it would work at a street fair event?

I could assign one phone for this I think

I think so yes - @panda ran this as part of a stall we had at MozFest one year, which was a busy event with lots of people coming and going, and it worked well I think.

I think @james has taken this out to a few different venues, might be able to offer some tips!

Ah yep, I’ve run this in a few different places. For a street fair, I think it could work well, especially if you can set up a bit of seating at a table (can be fiddly).

One thing to look out for is dropped screws - if they fall on the floor they’re a real pain to find. In the past I’ve had a phone with screws and one with all the screws already removed (so the parts simply come apart) to give people the option.

If you can get a phone that still turns on, people tend to respond really well if they can take it apart, reassemble it and then switch it on successfully afterwards.