SparkFun West Coast Tour 2012

We'll be headed west before you know it, so check out the latest details!

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We've been posting a few things about our up coming trip to the west coast. We've got a few details to share, and maybe a few chances for you to catch up with SparkFun's Dept. of Education! Here's the rough schedule:

Chandler, AZ - Oct. 14
LA - Oct. 15-19
Central CA - Oct. 20-21
Bay Area - Oct. 22-23
Rocklin, CA - Oct. 24
Portland, OR - Oct. 25-28
Seattle, WA - Oct. 29
We leave Colorado on October 13th and head straight to Arizona! Our first stop is a teacher training in Chandler on the 14th. From there we head due west into LA. We have a bunch of workshops in LA and many are opportunities for folks to participate.
On the 15th, we'll be doing an intro to Arduino and Lilypad with the LilyPad Arduino development board. This workshop is at the Seabase Aquatics Center and is listed here. On the 16th we'll be doing a full day again at the Seabase Center; this time we'll be going through a full introduction to Arduino with the SparkFun Inventor's Kit. This listing can be found here.
On the following days (the 17th and 18th) we are working with the Exploratory doing some things aimed at the younger crowd. We'll be doing crafts and embedded computation using LilyPad and the Picoboard with the Scratch programming environment. For more info on signing up, contact These LA workshops promise to be a great time and we will be happy to help you get more info, as well as point you to the folks leading them.
We also get to spend some time with the folks at NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory in Pasadena, CA. This is the place that recently sent a truck-sized rover to Mars; we're super excited to get to go and we promise a blog post about our visit there.
On October 19th we'll be headed to Santa Monica to do a classroom visit with a local school, and an after-school event as well. From there we say goodbye to LA and head up the coast to spend the day doing a Saturday workshop with our friend Quin. The common feeling at SparkFun is that we are really lucky to get to hang out with great kids and this is a case in point. We love Quin's website and he's a talent to be reckoned with.
We have a nice day to relax on Sunday before heading into the Bay Area for a couple events. We are doing a Surface Mount Soldering Workshop on the night of the 22nd at Noisebridge in San Francisco. Noisebridge is the vaunted hackerspace in SF, and we are thrilled to be working with Mitch and the folks there. You can register and get more info at the Noisebridge website. We have another school event the following day, and then we are on to Rocklin, CA, where Parallax and SparkFun are happy to announce their first ever collaborative effort! In late August, we invited Parallax president Ken Gracey and Chief of Engineering Jessica Uelmen to present a seminar at SparkFun about the Propeller Chip. Afterward, in an intense and raucous sit-down, Ken and Jessica asked if we’d like to do a workshop at their facility in California while we’re on our West Coast Tour. We jumped at the chance to work with our friends – so here we come! On October 24th, we’ll be running a ProtoSnap LilyPad Development Board workshop at Parallax in Rocklin, and we invite you to attend. Signup can be found under the classes and events section at
From Parallax we'll head to Portland for a couple days. All our events in Portland are school-oriented, so we won't have the chance to do any public workshops. We're sad about this, but we'll try and make more openings to travel and do things with the folks we don't get to see on this tour.
We have a quick swing through Seattle for some classroom time with a teacher who's using Arduino, and then we're hoping to get home for Colorado's renowned Halloween/Day of the Dead celebrations. That will about cover it for the tour, and we hope to see some some of you on our travels!

Comments 18 comments

  • LC / about 12 years ago / 3

    Hi all, These are just some prototypes of our educational mobile endeavors. You guys know how we are... we'll do it. Learn from the experience and then do it again a little different. We definitely want to visit all the places. Texas will definitely see some SparkFun EDU personell when the opportunity arises. As far as the UK goes- We'd love to and Nate has told us we should be thinking Global. Which we do... but being a very, very young department we have to make sure we expand in a... well... sane manner.

    Thanks for all the interest and support guys!

    And yeah you will definitely be getting a break down of our JPL experience. =D

  • Jamster / about 12 years ago / 3

    Don't fancy coming to the UK do you?

    please :)

  • TECH GEEK / about 12 years ago / 2

    Can SPE visit my house please? ;)

  • What about Iowa, that's a central location. (and I'm in the central time zone too!)

  • Jamreb / about 12 years ago / 1

    It doesn't look like you can register over at the Noisebridge looks like first come first serve?

  • dbrunner / about 12 years ago / 1

    This is flat out awesome! Thank you for spreading the word and helping bring electronics back into our schools.

  • Member #337688 / about 12 years ago / 1

    That's a really cool picture of the little boy reading the pamphlet. It looks very science-fiction-y.

  • ksb / about 12 years ago / 1

    More JPL details please! Where and when exactly?

  • I bet it's just a lucky coincidence you guys will be here the same time the space shuttle will be rolling down the street :)

  • I look forward to the recap video!

  • c33715 / about 12 years ago / 1

    Can we get you to do another stop in the Seattle metro? If not this time around, who do we contact to arrange it for the next tour? Thanks.

  • OldFar-SeeingArt / about 12 years ago / 1

    Pismo, eh?

  • Thimplum / about 12 years ago / 1


  • tigeramam / about 12 years ago / 1

    The Seattle public wants to 'catch up' with you too :( No love for the coast north of Cali?

  • Mupeg / about 12 years ago / 1

    Well that was a total tease for this Portlander. I know, I know. Kids and education are important but damn it where is MY quality geek time? I could try to pass myself off as an elementary school student but that may inadvertently assign me a pretty high creep factor if caught.

  • dksmall / about 12 years ago / 1

    What is the Teacher Training in Chandler? Is that something the public can/should go to?

  • @codylmartin / about 12 years ago / 1

    No Texas? :(

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