Create jewelry, produce a video or operate a 3-D printer. Learn how to create an internet shop on Etsy or improve your photography.
This year — exactly 100 years after its inception — the folks at the Clearwater Main Library are thinking outside the books, designing and implementing four special purpose rooms where people can gather to create, invent, tinker and just have a good time using machines, materials, tools and technology.
It's all free too.
Check it out during the special centennial celebration Saturday, from noon to 5 p.m. at the Clearwater Main Library, 100 N Osceola Ave.
The event features a birthday cake, food, a presentation by genealogist Karen Fortin, visits by local dignitaries, a video on the library's history, and police and fire vehicles. The Suncoast Ghostbusters will make an appearance as will a young bubble performer, Blaise Ryndes, in his act Spheres by Blaise.
Members of the local chapter of the American Sewing Guild will be on hand inside the first-floor Creation Studio for Arts and Design to help novices create quick sewing projects like coasters, tissue covers and hair accessories on six recently installed Singer heavy-duty sewing machines. They'll also demonstrate how to sew on buttons and repair hems.
Linda Cooper, president of the Suncoast Tampa Bay Chapter of the guild, said the popularity of quilt-making and the affordability of embroidery machines are bringing people, especially retiring Baby Boomers, back to the sewing table.
"Just look at the number of fabric stores we have in the area and how busy they are," she said.
The Creation Studio is not officially open because new flooring and furniture have yet to be installed. But a limited number of classes including macrame, crocheting, sewing, scrapbooking, adult coloring, aromatherapy and Instagram and Snapchat classes are under way. A Japanese Sumi-e (ink wash painting) workshop is slated for November. Professional gift wrapping classes and do-it-yourself wedding crafts will also be on the schedule.
"We've had a really great response so far," said Amber Brice, the library program specialist in charge of the studios. "People seem really excited about it."
She said the studios came about as a result of a city survey asking residents what they would like the library to offer.
The Discovery Studio for Creative Learning is on the second floor. It's used by youth for robotics club activities as well as science, technology, and arts and crafts classes.
The Innovation Studio of Technology and Business offers 3-D printers and an audio/visual studio fitted with a green screen, special lighting, microphones, a camcorder and iMacs loaded with Adobe Creative Suite software.
Another studio, the Heritage Studio of Community Memory, will be opening soon on the fourth floor. Stop by Saturday and learn about genealogy and how to better document family history. Bring your family history items for digitization.