September 23rd marks the National Day of Civic Hacking, when people around the country gather to "hack" their cities in a positive way by working on creative and innovative solutions to community challenges.


Mechanics Hall (519 Congress St) is a historic commercial building, meeting hall, and home of the Maine Charitable Mechanics Association, a fellowship of Portland's creative community since 1815.


To create an opportunity for unexpected and surprising solutions to emerge. To demonstrate positive patterns in community problem solving. To inspire and energize.


Portland Maine Voting Record

Project by Seth Klein & Tyler Constance to build an interactive record for Portland Maine city council votes. It will help citizens, journalists, and others research past city council votes.

Kesho Wazo App

Kesho Wazo is a youth arts & activism collective. They are looking to build a tool that supports the artistic work of their members, and their mission to empower youth to become powerful, passionate, and creative through community engagement in pursuit of their purpose.

Bringing Maine's Political Scorecards into the Digital Age

Project by Openmaine.org to design a tool for generating political scorecards for advocacy groups in Maine. Current scorecards are usually either designed only for print, or, when they are available digitally, look like they crawled out of the early Internet circa 1994. This project seeks to improve the design and function of political scorecards for all types of advocacy groups.

The Complete City

Mapping project by Portland Society for Architecture and partners, which provides a blank map of Portland and asks you to map what you love, don't love, and wish were different in Portland. PSA hopes to collect as many maps as they can from a wide range of neighborhoods and people who live and work in Portland.

Community Services Guide

Project by Emily Felger to create an accessible hub for information about free, low-cost, and sliding scale resources in the Portland Metro area.

Musical Staircase

Project by Hack Portland members to build a functioning musical staircase for temporary installation in a downtown public space.

Building Community Through Change

Project by City of Portland resident and Planning Board member Lisa Whited to improve the process of citizen engagement in proposed projects.

Interactive street life project for St. John St

Join the Open Bench Project in bringing a surprising bit of street art to the corner of St. John and Congress Street. Engage the community with a bit of fun loving and curious bit of street art, and take a peek at OBP's new facility in the process.

Congress Square in Winter Brainstorm

Join the Friends of Congress Square park to imagine ways to make Congress Square come alive in the winter. Bring your favorite brainstorming supplies!

Anyone can propose a project, up to and including the morning of the event. If you don't know what you'd like to work on yet, just show up!


We need people to help with setup/cleanup, registration, A/V, and wayfinding before, during, and after the event. Volunteer and get a Civic Design Fest T-shirt! Contact Corey at galxzx@gmail.com for more info.


Saturday September 23rd

9:00 am
Check-in outside Mechanics Hall
10:00 am
Project Pitches & Team Formation
12:30 pm
Lunch at Think Tank (next to Mechanics Hall)
5:00 pm
Dinner & Project Presentations at Think Tank (Public welcome!)
7:00 - 9:00 pm
Reception & Networking
There will be ongoing activities for the general public along Congress Street between Monument Sq and Congress Sq, including a Civic Design & Technology exhibit at Kingspoke


Click above to register for the event. Registration is encouraged but not required for admittance. When in doubt, just show up! (Bring your friends, kids, and co-workers, too)

Become a Sponsor

Please consider sponsoring us with funds, food, space, or attendance to make this year's event a huge success.

Join the Community

Want to do this all the time? Send us an email, or meet us every Tuesday night at Hack Portland!

I want to participate but I don't know how...

In the world of "civic hacking" the ideas that really make a positive impact always involve ordinary people. So no matter your skills or background, you can make a difference!



Code of Conduct

If you plan to participate in the event, please take a moment to review our code of conduct.

We'd to hear from you!

Feel free to contact with any questions or comments about our upcoming event!