Join in the resurrection of broken stuff at Repair Café

Photo contributed. Jamey Gerlaugh does electronic repair at a pre-COVID Repair Café.
Photo contributed. Jamey Gerlaugh does electronic repair at a pre-COVID Repair Café.

If it ain’t broke don’t fix it, but if it is broke — bring it out to the Repair Café.

People get ready for the return of the Repair Café at the Charlotte Congregational Church 10 a.m.-2 p.m., Saturday, April 30.

The Repair Café is a four-hour, fix-it party of local folks volunteering their skills to fix or help you learn how to repair your broken stuff.

Just bring your broken things to the Repair Cafe and watch and learn as handy folks do and demonstrate their magic.

In addition to fixing stuff so it isn’t thrown into the infinite-seeming abyss of disposable but not biodegradable refuse, co-sponsors the Charlotte Library and the Grange hope to:

  • promote and teach the lost art of repair to all ages
  • keep perfectly good stuff out of the landfill
  • build our town’s sense of community by working together to meet each other’s needs.

In the past repairers have fixed such things as:

  • Lamps — replace switches and cords, tighten wobbly bases
  • Jewelry (no soldering), replace watch batteries, fix watch bands,
  • Eyeglass screws
  • Furniture, cuckoo clocks, dolls, favorite toys (wooden, metal, or plastic)
  • Troubleshoot and/or repair small appliances, electronics, radios, fans, heaters, (de)humidifiers
  • Sharpen garden tools, replace wooden handles, repair electric trimmers
  • Sharpen knives, scissors, axes
  • Mend clothing by hand or sewing machine; repair holey knits; adjust sewing machines
  • Replace zippers

Even the following services have been offered:

  • A 3D printer and operator on hand for quickly making copies of replacement parts out of plastic
  • Fixers that can make reusable shopping bags out of your old jeans, favorite skirt, whatever. Or denim skirts and shorts out of your old jeans or other pants
  • A fixer of old tube stereos
  • A bike repair dude offering tuning and minor repair of bicycles, truing of bike wheels
  • A squad of electronic repair folks to tackle more sophisticated electrical and computer issues.

The Repair Café is always looking for volunteer repairers. Do you have a repair or creative skill you want to offer?  Email Jamey Gerlaugh, the Repair Café coordinator.

There is no charge for the Repair Café repairers’ labor. If your repair requires new parts, you are responsible for buying those parts beforehand and bringing them. If possible, please register your items to be fixed.

Attendees are asked, if able, to bring food or money to donate to the Charlotte Food Shelf. Coffee and home-baked goods will be available all day. Lunch of chili, salad and drinks will be available for a $5 donation to Sustainable Charlotte.