Vintage Vacuum Exhibit coming to TekVenture


The TekVenture/Skaggs Vintage Vacuum Pop Up Museum featuring a variety of over 150 vacuum sweepers from the late 1800's to late 1900's, runs April 14 to 29, during TekVenture’s normal hours of 1pm to 8pmWednesday through Sunday. The last weekend at 3pm Saturday and Sunday, "Invasion of the Vacuums of Outer Space" will be performed by Ecstatic Theatrics. TekVenture is at 1550 Griffin St., in the old River City Complex. FREE. Questions? Call project leader Jeannette Jaquish at 260 750-9013

This Vintage Vacuum Cleaner Collection, was assembled by the late Dale Skaggs Sr. (12-29-1944 to 5-7-2013 ) who owned the former Allen County Sweeper Company located at 1800 Broadway Street in Fort Wayne, Indiana, TekVenture's previous location. 
Admission to see the collection is free. 
This pop up museum will show over 150 vintage vacuum cleaners displaying the evolution of styles and mechanisms dating back to 1900 and some are likely very late 1800's through the later 1900's.  The most primitive are human powered 4 foot long metal syringes that the user must pull the plunger of, and industrial grade wood and sheet metal, lever operated enclosed propellers mounted on platforms. There are long canisters and hammer head uprights, riding on tiny wheels or sled runners, round and cute or stocky cylinders, classically ornate or stylishly mod. Many look like space ships and alien weapons, or characters like R2D2 from science fiction movies, spawning plans among the TekVenture members to create alien themed events during the exhibit, such as an “alien autopsy” exploring the inner mechanisms of a vacuum cleaner, and a live play of “Invasion of the Vacuums of Outer Space” the final weekend. To join the cast, contact Jeannette Jaquish at 260 750-9013 or .

TekVenture members Greg Jacobs and Betsy Gemmer, obviously infected by the alien mind worm, obediently assist the Vacuums of Outer Space to invade TekVenture.

What planet do these hammer-headed seemingly peaceful aliens come from?

Adorably round and orange. When did they land? No one can remember. That whole morning is a blur.

One of the Ancient Ones, dispensing wisdom to the younger more powerful vacuum cleaners, while condemning their new fangled addiction to electricity.


The pods have burst and TekVenture is infested with vintage vacuums, needing nurturing.


March 16, 17 & 18, 2018,
TekVenture hosted:
"St. Patrick’s Games, Plays and Tomfoolery at TekVenture"
Games were set out such as Hnefatafl a  traditional Irish board game, and action games such as The Ogre's Bridge, and The Pit of Pendulums.
Visitors made things using TekVenture tools and Maker supervision such as Magical Magnet Spinners with Mick Bierbaum, and copper candle holders with Greg Jacobs.
Ecstatic Theatrics performed “Who Framed Lucky the Leprechaun?”, a play by TekVenture member Jeannette Jaquish, about when Lucky Charms' mascot lost his job due to a growth spurt and was kidnapped to the General Mills Marshmallow Mines.  
Irish Stew, Bangers & Mash, Corn Beef and Cabbage, Apple Spice Muffins and Leprechaun Mint Chocolate Chip Cookies were eaten. 

TekVenture Elves Make-a-Gift Workshop - Saturday Dec. 9, 2017 

Check out this event over at this page!



Sell your art or Buy Art! Many activities for all! See Events Page.



TekVenture, NE Indiana's growing Public Art and Technology workshop opens its new facilities
at 1550 Griffin Street in "River City", a newly developing area on the Eastern edge of Downtown
Fort Wayne. Doors will be open starting Noon Friday June 16 and daily Noon to 8 PM through
Saturday June 24 in celebration of the second annual "National Week of Making" June 17 - 24.

Nearly three times as large as its former location on Broadway, TekVenture @ River City
features separate workshop areas for welding, blacksmithing, metal working, machining,
woodworking, ceramics, robotics and electronics, CAD, 3D printing and scanning and sewing. A
new workshop featuring glass working is in development. In addition, a 3,000 sq. ft. "Great Hall"
complete with stage is available for exhibitions, art shows and public rental.
New, lower membership fees offer Access to Tools, Community Education and Services to
Creatives for individuals, students, families and community groups starting at $25 per month for
students. Home schools, clubs, persons with disabilities and school groups continue to be
welcome by appointment. Qualified Veterans are eligible for a one-year free membership.
INVENTING OUR SUMMER series of workshops exploring all of the workshop areas begins
Saturday July 1st with "Inventor's Workshops" for kids 8 - 12 years of age from 9 AM - Noon
every Saturday through Saturday August 22; (no workshops on Saturday July 8 because of 3
Rivers Parade.) Cost is $25 per person or $100 for four pre-selected dates. Members receive a
20% discount. Family membership allows two adults and two children to be members and
receive the 20% discount. Each workshop will introduce participants to a different skill set and
technology offered in TekVenture Workshop areas. Adults (12 years old and up) may enjoy the
same introductory workshops, one in each of TekVenture's workshop areas for the same price.
Topical workshops exploring tools and techniques for making things continue to be offered
during TekVenture's Inventing Our Summer. Check back here at the website for dates and




In the tradition of the Phoenix Bird arising from the ashes of its past, TekVenture invites adults, kids
and families to assist in constructing the TekVenture float for the July 8 Three Rivers Parade.
Responding to Three Rivers Festival calls for more floats, TekVenture makers are creating a
twelve-foot tall Phoenix bird rolling sculpture that opens its wings. Designed by artist Beth Collier
and members of TekVenture's workshop masters and members, the float will be constructed of
parts made by each of the workshop areas in TekVenture's new facility at 1550 Griffin Street in
River City.
Join the fun of assembling the Phoenix Sculpture by helping make the parts at TekVenture Friday
16 th June through Saturday 24 th June between Noon and 8 PM on most days. Participants will help
construct at nine “stations” for tracing, cutting, edge burning, sewing, feather stuffing, velcro-ing,
stapling flames and other assembly tasks. Check the TekVenture Facebook page for details of actual working times. There is no cost to participate in the float build. Participants will be able to tour TekVenture facilities and consider becoming individual, student or family members for extended access to tools, workshops and programs.



See us on Facebook!



CLAYWORX: New Workshop Area at TekVenture Offers "POTTERY FREE THROW" Sessions

April 2017!

ClayWorx is a new ceramics workshop featured in TekVenture's new location at 1550 Griffin Street in the area of River City.  Ceramicist Tom Sherbondy is working to build on his legacy in establishing at TekVenture a fully functional ceramics workshop accessible to the public.  "CLAYWORX" is being equipped with electric and manual pottery wheels, kilns, wedging table, slab roller, glazing area, work tables and other tools for use by all who wish to create with clay.  An adjacent "gallery" is planned for display of ClayWorx artworks.

TekVenture members will be able to use the ClayWorx facilities almost daily. Those wanting instruction will be able to choose from a number of introductory and advanced workshop sessions currently being planned. Artists and other geeks are encouraged to join TekVenture for repeated use of ClayWorx and other facilities.

To introduce the public to ClayWorx, during the Month of April, Tom is inviting all who are interested to sign up for a three session "Pottery Free Throw" at TekVenture. For no charge or membership requirement, folks can make a clay object either by hand-building or using the wheel before firing their objects in the kiln. At the second session, participants will glaze their object for re-firing. At the third session they may collect their piece and receive constructive criticism and inspiration for further commitment. Participants are encouraged to wear old clothing and bring a towel for cleaning their workspace and tools.

Pottery Free Throw sessions can include up to four people in each group of three sessions. Friends and Family members are encouraged to sign up. Home Schoolers, Veterans, clubs, artists and past members of TekVenture are also invited to sign up. All ages are welcome!

Pottery Free Throw sessions of two hours can be scheduled Monday - Friday 10 am - Noon, 2 pm - 4 pm and 6 pm - 8 pm, and Saturday mornings 10 am - Noon.

For reservations call Tom at 260.580.1964


ARCH*TEK Preservation Expo Set for April 1, 2017 at the New TekVenture Location

Presented by:

ARCH*TEK, a joint effort of Fort Wayne's historic preservation group, ARCH, and Fort Wayne's TekVenture


  • 1550 Griffin St, Fort Wayne, IN  46803 (previously occupied by the River City Night Club, next to the volleyball courts)


    • Saturday, April 1, 2017, 10:00 am to 4:00 pm


  • Featured Speaker:  David Hayles, a world class expert on scagliola, a faux marble ornamental plastering technique, that is one of the many features of Fort Wayne's Allen County Courthouse.  His work is part of many royal institutions in the UK and the US Capitol building.  He will be selling and signing his recent book "Confessions of an Ornamental Plasterer" at the expo.  

  • Demonstrations of historic preservation and restoration techniques
    • Agenda / Sessions / Demonstrations (April 1, 2017)
      • 10:00 am          Molding Restoration
      • 10:00 am          Plaster Repair
      • 11:00 am          Featured Demonstrator, David Hayles - Scagliola
      • 12:00 noon       Landscaping / Gardening
      • 12:00 noon       Electricily
      • 1:00 pm            Window & Door Restoration
      • 2:00 pm            Energy Efficiency / LEED
      • 2:00 pm            Simplx Security
      • 3:00 pm            Featured Demonstrator, David Hayles - Scagliola
      • All day               Chimney Pot & Blacksmith Demonstrations
      • Concessions Available


    See also article from Fort Wayne News Sentinel:  

    "TekVenture's New Location Gives Makers More Space, Options"

    And Allen County Courthouse feature "Doing Our Part for Generations to Come"



    TekVenture is Relocating to New Location at Fort Wayne's River City

    TekVenture is in the final stages of moving to its new larger facility in the former River City Night Club, east of the intersection of Coombs and Tecumseh streets, just east of downtown, at 1550 Griffin St, next to the volleyball courts.  It will open April 1, 2017, hosting a joint ARCH*TEK Preservation Expo with ARCH, the local historic preservation group.  The new facility will provide a much expanded area of 13,000 square feet, compared to its previous location which provided 4,500 square feet at the old vacuum cleaner shop on Broadway, next to the old General Electric facilities.


    The new location will provide space for significant additional capabilites, including a new ceramics shop, expo/meeting space with a stage, along with much expanded space for the metal working, wood working, and electronics/robotics.  The new "clean space" will provide expanded area for 3D printing, 3D scanning, egg printing, sewing, and smaller meetings.  

    The new expo/meeting space will allow TekVenture to host expos along with the potential of meeting space for other organizations.


     TekVenture is made up of many shops, workspaces, meeting spaces and show places.


     The HOTSHOP is set up for welding with MIG, Arc, and Oxyacetylene.  Weldging to be experienced by Women & everyone!  Learn blacksmithing arts with forge.  Mold your broken part and pour hot Aluminum!  Other tools include press, benders stake table and Pexto.


    Access band saw, table saw, radial saw, joiner, drill press, 2 wood lathes, shaper, jig saws, mortising press, picture frame miter cutter, many hand and power hand tools, and CNC router table.


    Get your hands on clay and engage the are and science of Ceramics.  Hand build or use the foot-powered or electric potters wheels, slab roller, kilns, and experience with glazes.  Special access for qualified persons with disabilities.




    Learn to machine metal!  Make your parts on 4 Mills, (2 CNC,) , Drill presses, 3 lathes, Marvel metal band saw, Grinders, Shaper, Presses, Injection molder, comparator, hand tools, tooling and mentors.


    Design your widget on computers using CAD (computer aided design). Use 3D printers and full-body scanner,  EggBot® digital drawing,  Vacuum forming, sew leather on an industrial sewing machine or make graphic buttons.