Monday was the official start of spring break, and the Stewart C. Meyer Harker Heights Public Library kicked things off with the grand opening of its brand new Maker Space.
The Maker Space is a joint venture between the library and the Harker Heights Activity Center.
Dozens of area families turned out for the event, with nearly 100 people coming to the library before the three-hour event was even halfway over. And, said children’s librarian Erica Rossmiller, the library also held a “Lego Mania” event in conjunction with the opening of Maker Space, which included Legos, robotics, gears, puzzles and building blocks. building not only in the Maker space, but also throughout the library itself.
Harker Heights resident KerryAnn Zamore-Byrd brought her 7-year-old son Landon Frazier to the event. She said she asked Landon to read the flyer to decide what he wanted to do, and he chose Lego Mania.
“He loves Legos,” she said, adding that it was also “an opportunity for him to make new friends too.”
The couple also planned to attend several of the other events the library had organized for the week.
“I always try to get out there and support the different events right here in our community,” she said.
The Maker Space had several stations set up around the room, some of which contained Legos and other construction toys. Other stations contained painting and coloring supplies; there was also a music station with percussion instruments, an electric piano, and several computer stations for robotics and basic coding.
“It’s about construction, engineering and the creative aspect that goes with it,” Rossmiller said.
Kristina French from Killeen brought her son Elliot, 7, and daughter Vivian, 5, to kick off their spring break.
“He (Elliot) thought it would be super fun,” she said. Elliot agreed that was when he was working on his nautical-themed Lego designs.
Eight-year-old Jonah stayed at his Lego station. “I don’t know what I’m building yet, but I know what parts I want to put in it,” he said.
“(Legos are) one of my favorite things,” he said. “I want to be a Lego Master when I grow up.” His finished product turned out to be a six-story “fortress”, complete with ladders and multiple entrances.
“There’s a fantastic process behind (the construction),” Rossmiller said. “They’re thinking ‘why’.”
Jonah’s mother, Katie, said it was the first library event they had attended.
“It’s good!” she says. “Kids love it, and there’s a lot (to do).”
The Bowles family from Copperas Cove also came out for the event, and while 3-year-old Addy played around with the Legos a bit, it was the coloring station that caught his attention. Six-year-old Steven loved Legos, but also had fun playing the electric piano and playing with other building toys. Her mother, Erin, said they would attend some of the other science events of the week as well.
“Steven loves anything to do with science,” she said, as Steven added, “I want to be a scientist when I grow up!”
Rossmiller said of the event, “It’s been a fantastic success! There is so much interaction between parents and caregivers and children. … We love seeing them (kids) bring out their inner engineers.