Youth Maker Accelerator Program 2022

Youth Maker Coordinator: Val Snyder



Meeting Schedules

Saturday, September 24 Meeting:

Downloadable: September Meeting Slides

YouTube Meeting Link:

The recording is bad. If you want to try to watch it, feel free. If you missed the meeting and prefer to talk to me one-on-one to go over the presentation, email me at

Saturday, November 19 Meeting
10:30 AM to 12:30 PM
Construction Junction back classroom

  • Guest speakers, meet your mentor, final questions answered, and more.

Tools to help you plan:

Inventory  Worksheet:

Use this sheet to list everything you want to sell at the Holiday Market. This is a planning document only. You do not need to return it to us.


  • Each product individually and how long it takes you to make it. 
  • How many of each product do you want to have at the event? Include in this thought process different sizes, colors, etc. If you make clothes, name each design separately. If you make jewelry – do you make a bunch of the same products, are they all a little different? Do you have patterns that are the same for knitters? 
  • Use this exercise to narrow down what you plan to bring, how many of each, the costs to create each product, and the time involved. It will help you stay organized.

Downloadable documents include:

Production Calendars:
Due to Val no later than Friday, October 7.


  • After you work through the Inventory Worksheet, decide your product and inventory goals for the Holiday Market. It should also help you determine how long each item’s production will take.
  • Work backward from the Holiday Event and put your goals, production days, and times on the blank calendar. 
  • Add time to the calendar to add the inventory to your point of sale system (credit card application) or time to get your inventory to Handmade Arcade so we can add it to our system.
  • Add time for packaging, adding price tags, and planning your display.

Downloadable documents include:

Materials Order Form:

Due to Val no later than Friday, October 7.

NOTE: Include all costs such as shipping and taxes to see what it will cost you in a ‘real world’ scenario. We have sales tax exemptions in PA and Amazon Prime and will do our best to get free shipping and taxes excluded from all orders. This may bump you up over the $500 limit. That is OK. Keep your materials to $500. The rest we will get covered or cover for you as needed.

Downloadable documents include:

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Payment One-on-One Conversation with Val

Val will be in touch individually with you per your preferred method of communication. She will discuss payment options, best practices, and assess your needs and how Handmade Arcade can assist you with processing credit cards or having cash at the event to make change.

WiFi at the Convention Center: There is not free WiFi. You will have to use your phone’s data.

Things to discuss with Val in your one-on-one conversation regarding payment and data

  • Data: Taking credit cards on your phone uses very little data and is the best way to take credit card payments. You can have multiple folks logged into your account at once, allowing you and your helpers to take cards simultaneously. 
  • Do you not have unlimited data? Using a tablet vs. a phone? We will pay to get you on the Convention Center data. It is spotty in that it will log you out after a while, so the better choice is to use your phone if possible.
  • What kind of phone do you have? That will impact what you will need to take credit card payments. Do you have an iPhone or Android? Does it have a port to plug a Square reader (or other readers) into? If not, you might need a wireless card reader. Those are approximately $50 each. HA can provide them if you need them. If you do not have unlimited data and are concerned about this, let Val know when you have your one-on-one conversation. (NOTE: HA will need to purchase the wireless readers, it will help to know sooner rather than later if you need to borrow one!)

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Here’s what you need to know about the Holiday Market: 

The Holiday Market is Handmade Arcade’s longest-running and largest event. Consistently drawing approximately 10,000 shoppers each year, the Holiday Market features a wide range of makers from Western Pennsylvania and beyond. Due to its venue and highly engaged audience, the Holiday market hosts up to 250 makers each year.

  • The market is open on the first weekend after the Thanksgiving holiday weekend. (Dates vary).
  • The event occurs annually at the David L. Lawrence Convention Center in downtown Pittsburgh, 1000 Fort Duquesne Blvd, Pittsburgh, PA 15222.

Virtual Component

In addition to the in-person market, makers will receive a virtual listing on so attendees can browse makers and plan their shopping day. All participating makers will be required to update their virtual listings with instructions and guidance from the Handmade Arcade team.

Booth Sizes for Youth Makers: 

  • Standard Vendor Space: (Value $320)
    • In-person event 
    • 10-by-10-foot display space
    • One 8-by-2.5-foot table 
    • Two chairs
    • Load-in and load-out assistance from Convention Center staff between 12 and 4 PM

Market Details:

  • Friday
    • Youth Makers can set up on Friday afternoon between 12 and 4 p.m. (Convention Center Teamsters are available to help).
    • If you are not able to set up during this time, let Val know. We will help you get your table set up and loading in.
    • If you load in on the Friday, consider staying for the Happy Hour Preview Party on Friday night.
      • Happy Hour Preview Party starts at 5 p.m.; makers must stay until the event ends at 7:30 p.m.
      • .The Friday Night Happy Hour Preview Party is an excellent opportunity to set up early, make some early sales, and meet and mingle with fellow vendors.  
  • Saturday
    • Vendors must be at their booths by 8:30 a.m. Saturday morning to prepare for the 9:30 a.m. Early Bird shopping hour.
    • Vendors may not leave or tear down their space until 7 p.m. without the express permission of Handmade Arcade’s executive director.

Post-event Surveys:

  • After the event, youth makers must share information with Handmade Arcade by completing a post-event survey, including their sales numbers. 

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