We like the concept of Startup Weekends, a process that challenges attendees to come up with an idea for a business on a Friday and prepares them to leave with the foundation for a start-up on Sunday.
The first-ever Startup Weekend Denton will kick off this Friday, and it will be interesting to see what ideas the weekend incubator process produces.
Event organizer Kyle Taylor estimates that between 60 and 80 people will participate in the event. Attendees will give a 60-second pitch about their business idea, and then everyone will vote on the best ideas. Ten to 12 of the best ideas will be chosen, and attendees will then break into groups.
The teams then spend the rest of the weekend working on and developing their start-up idea, asking designated coaches for help along the way. Then on Sunday evening the ideas will be presented to the judges and awards will be presented to the top three teams.
The result, Taylor told us, should be the foundation to launch a start-up.
“You have your business model, you have your idea, you have your team, and then you’re ready to go,” Taylor said.
The event is part of a larger movement to organize and help the start-up and technology community in Denton by Taylor, University of North Texas student Clarissa Redwine and others. After a few test runs were conducted in December, various meetings will be held this year to help technology experts, programmers and other information technology professionals network locally.
Denton Open Coffee Club will focus on talking and networking every other Tuesday morning. Denton Open Hack will be held on some Wednesday nights for people to help each other write code. Denton Jelly will be a casual co-working meet-up on some Fridays.
When she and some of her classmates started working on their start-up last year, Redwine said, they had a hard time trying to find a developer, so they decided to do something about it. She began talking with the head of the Dallas Open Coffee Club and thought the model and other networking events could happen in Denton.
The organic growth of the movement is something City Council member Kevin Roden — a longtime supporter of local start-ups — said he is happy to see.
“To me it’s a very healthy thing for our economy,” he said.
We agree and believe the concept could encourage creative thinking and help would-be entrepreneurs gain access to the environment they need to bounce business ideas around and see if they have merit.
Registration is open online at www.Denton.startupweekend.org until the first day of the workshop, which will be held at Denton’s North Branch Library.
It’s good to see events like this one planned in Denton — we should do all we can to encourage and nurture new business ideas, which could eventually provide much-needed jobs and a brighter economic future.
The next big success story could be out there right now, an idea just waiting to find fertile ground.