Sponsored by Techstars and Google as well as numerous local businesses, Startup Weekend is a competition at HSU designed to help entrepreneurs start their own business. The competition is community focused, what they do is take several business ideas and vote on which ones will be tested. Then contestants form groups to make a business plan for the winning ideas, finally pitching the ideas to a panel of judges. The judges mentored the groups anonymously through out the weekend, sounds pretty cool if you ask me.
Contestants benefited from 16 prizes split up in multiples according to whichever place their business plan took in the contest. More importantly, the experience each team gained over the weekend may be life changing. I was impressed by the amount of information put together, and how well thought out each pitch was for only working such a short period of time. Truly I wasn't alone in being impressed, as I recall a judge saying "Any business owner in town would be proud of these presentations."
The writer in me wants to tell you about the ideas shared, and how I totally support and believe in these entrepreneurs in their journey. But I feel it would be a good boundary for me not to share the details of their business plans here.. Though I have stumbled across a great idea that is fair game, and since I already planned on reaching out to each team to see if they're going to move forward... I believe it might be fun to host a "Business Shower," which would be like a baby shower but for a new business start.
That's the idea, we would invite people to bring offerings of support and learn about the new business. I know I'd love to get a bunch of friends together, write their free promo blogs and connect with those who support the cause. Imagine a group of people get together over an interest in solving a problem or serving others, then seeing the impact of carrying that energy into the general public by celebrating their ideas and goals. I'm so stoked to have witnessed those final pitches, and look forward to sending kind regards to each team.
The fun continues because the AWEsome Business Competition is staging their second speaker tonight at the Arcata Theatre Lounge. AWEsome Business Competition if you didn't read our latest blog is an organization hosting a series of talks and workshops with prizes and contest for local ventures related to agriculture, water, and energy. Please come to Building and Investing in Regenerative Indigenous Economies tonight presented by Dr. PenyElys Droz, the NDN Change Maker Fellowship & Prize Director.
As always, I'm going to see what I can learn who I can connect with and try to share their productive interest story with you here!