The 2nd Annual Community Chain Reaction produced by The Forge Initiative, will be held on Saturday, May 6, 2017 at the Coach Kay Yow Court at the Herb Young Community Center in Cary, NC. Teams will build their own chain reaction/Rube Goldberg contraptions and bring them together to create a giant chain reaction contraption to display to the public on the day of the event.

For the 2017 Community Chain Reaction, teams of 2 to 6 people can register for a 6 foot table where they can display their own chain reaction contraption. Contraptions will be designed and set up so that one contraption will set off the next contraption, which will set off the next one, and so on, until "The Ultimate Kinetic Machine" finale, the culminating activity to be set off! In addition to the chain reaction demonstration, attendees and the general public will be able to participate in a number of ongoing family-friendly, hands-on STEAM (science, technology, engineering, art, math) activities.

Date/Time/Entrance Fee:

Saturday, May 6, 2017
Open to the public from 1:30 to 4:30 PM
Entrance Fee for General Public: $5/person or $20/family


Herb Young Community Center
101 Wilkinson Avenue, Cary, NC 27513

Schedule (Subject to Change)

1:30 - 4:30 PM - Family friendly, hands-on design and engineering activities

  • Design your own Chain Reaction Machine
  • 3D printing
  • Electronic carrot chimes using MaKey MaKey
  • Meet Ken, the Humanoid Robot -- a joint project with The Forge Downtown and IEEE

2:00 - 3:00 PM - Chance for public to explore and ask questions about contraptions

3:00 PM - Introductions of event participants

3:30 PM - Start Community Chain Reaction

4:30 PM - End of Event

This year’s event theme will be “Kinetic Community”.

How many creative ways can you incorporate this theme into your contraption?!?

**See what fantastic contraptions were built for the 2016 Inaugural Community Chain Reaction in the video below.**

Sign Up for More Information

Click HERE to sign up to receive more information about the 2017 Community Chain Reaction as it comes available!

Team Registration Information

Click HERE for information on Team Registration. (NOTE: Team registration DEADLINE is April 21)

The Forge Initiative Inc

The Forge Initiative is a Cary-based 501(c)(3) nonprofit whose mission is to engage families and individuals of all ages to collaboratively explore, learn, and lead using technology and engineering. The Forge Initiative location in Cary is known as The Forge Downtown and has been actively engaging families since 2010.

What is a Chain Reaction?


A chain reaction is the interaction of an imaginative set of informal contraptions, sometimes referred to as a Rube Goldberg Machine.

Inspired by cartoonist Rube Goldberg’s imaginings, a Rube Goldberg machine accomplishes a simple task through an absurdly complex and improbably set of mechanisms and interactions. Check out some Rube Goldberg's cartoons to see his creativity at work: https://www.rubegoldberg.com/gallery/

Chain Reaction events are becoming popular in communities across the country, particularly in locations recognized for their thought leadership such as at MIT, Purdue, Berkeley, and the Carnegie Science Center.

It’s long overdue to start one in Cary, NC.