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PLYMC's "Technology Playground"

The Public Library of Youngstown and Mahoning County, OH

Contact: Heidi Daniel,

Community Partners: OH WOW! Science Museum


PLYMC is preparing to introduce our first Maker Bot 3D printer in to our Technology Playground at our Main Library. (We are actually waiting for a replacement part to put it out on the floor). The Technology Playground brings together different types of devices for the public to “play” and experiment with. Although this has been focused entirely on computers and tablets, with the introduction of the Maker Bot PLYMC plans to shift its focus to activities where the community can actually make different projects ranging from arts and crafts items to practical items. The 3-D printer will introduce the public to the modeling software used to create a product, as well as the printing process and technology.  

Accompanying the 3D printer will be informational handouts including information from America Makes- formerly known as the National Additive Manufacturing Institute- a federal government initiative located in downtown Youngstown, to help educate the community on additive manufacturing. This is an important tie-in for our local area.  

In the fall, we plan to begin demonstrations and formal programs in utilizing the 3D printer. The hope is to create a more extensive maker space by 2015, primarily focused on education in manufacturing.

Additionally, we have a partnership with our local children’s science and technology museum, and offer kits that encourage home experiments and a weeklong family pass to the museum, where families can participate in “Plan-Do-Check-Act”: hands-on maker activities that focus on the analytical process used in many types of manufacturing.


Because it is so new, we do not have outcomes yet to report. However, we have been successful in creating conversations with the local Manufacturing Coalition, America Makes, a local software company, and the science museum. We believe these collaborations will lead to a more comprehensive offering for the community -