Dale Dougherty, “Father” of the Maker Movement, to Present at PlayCon

by Laurie Chartorynsky, The Toy Association

How can the Maker Movement inspire toy companies to be more innovative with their products and brands? In a special PlayCon session, toy and play professionals will discover how to out-innovate, out-educate, and out-build their competition when they hear from Dale Dougherty, the “father” of the Maker Movement, creator of the world-renowned Maker Faire events, and a White House “Champion of Change” honoree, when the conference returns May 8 to 9 in San Francisco, Calif.

“As we look to provide the most cutting-edge information and trends to PlayCon attendees, we are excited Dale will be joining us and other prolific play influencers as part of the conference’s strong line up of speakers,” said Marian Bossard, The Toy Association’s executive vice president of global market events. “His ideas are sure to inspire the maker in all of us.”

PlayCon’s new conference format will include short TED Talk-like sessions from more than two dozen notable professionals, including Facebook’s Eva Press; Google’s Victoria Fang; alternative reality game designer Jane McGonigal; Activision Blizzard’s Tim Kilpin; NPD’s Frédérique Tutt; Trend Hunter’s Armida Ascano and Courtney Scharf; Ted Curtin of ProdigyWorks; and many more.

As the founder and CEO of Maker Media, which owns Make: Magazine and Maker Faire, Dougherty believes that the Maker Movement has the potential to transform the educational experience of students and introduce them to the practice of innovation through play and tinkering. PlayCon attendees are sure to be inspired by Dougherty’s passion for creation and invention.

Dougherty started Maker Faire, an event that celebrates the DIY mindset, in the San Francisco Bay area in 2006. Since then, Maker Faire has spread to nearly 200 events in 40 countries, with over 1.5 million attendees. The family-friendly event gathers together tech enthusiasts, crafters, educators, tinkerers, food artisans, hobbyists, engineers, science clubs, artists, students, and commercial exhibitors to showcase their creations and share their learnings, inspiring others to become Makers themselves.

Dougherty is the author of Free to Make: How the Maker Movement Is Changing our Jobs, Schools and Minds. He is also a co-author of Maker City: A Practical Guide for Reinventing American Cities. Attendees of Dougherty’s seminar will receive a free copy of Free to Make. Visit www.ToyAssociation.org/PlayCon to register and for a list of up-to-date speakers, hotel information, and other news about the industry’s premier conference for play professionals.