Northern Illinois Mini Maker Faire Costume Contest at STEMfest

To celebrate Halloween, STEMfest and our first Maker Faire, we’re having a costume contest! Share your creative spirit by dressing for the occasion.

Participation Guidelines

You’re welcome to wear any costume that conforms to the safety guidelines below, but to be eligible for prizes, you must register in advance and follow our guidelines for costume construction.

Entries will be divided into categories based on age or group. Group registrants are not allowed to register as individuals.

  • Ages 0 to 8 years
  • Ages 9 to 12 years
  • Ages 13 to 17 years
  • Ages 18+
  • Families and/or a group of 2 or more people


  • First place winners in each category receive a $25 gift certificate for our STEMfest store.
  • First place and honorable mentions in each category win a STEMfest t-shirt from OLT Marketing. Group winners receive a t-shirt for each member (maximum of 3 t-shirts.)

Costume Guidelines

  • All costumes must be family friendly and appropriate for a public setting.
  • Masks are not allowed.
  • You must make and/or modify at least 75% of your costume. (No more than a quarter of your costume can be store bought or pre-made.)
  • Qualifying modifications include the following:
  • Changing the color of accessories by dying or bleaching.
  • Adding material to shoes.
  • Combining, weaving or advance styling of wigs.
  • Inadequate modifications include the following:
  • Adjusting the length of jewelry pieces.
  • Adding belt holes to adjust fit of belts/straps.
  • Simple wig styling like simple braiding or basic curling.

Prop Guidelines

  • Your prop must conform to all active rules defined by NIU Police. Review the guidelines provided by the NIU Convocation Center.
  • You must make or modify a portion of any prop or accessory.
  • You must be able to carry your prop around the Convocation Center safely without risk of injury to you or those around you.
  • If you’re unsure of your prop, visit the NIU STEAM booth and we’ll evaluate your prop.


Costumes will be judged by a panel of makers at 3 p.m. in the Creativity Classroom and awards presented at 3:50 p.m. on the Celebration Stage. Criteria for judging include the following:

  1. Originality
  2. Craftsmanship
  3. Resourcefulness

STEMFest 2019 is Saturday, October 19th!

See Previous STEMfest winners!