Events kick off Washington Coast Works Sustainable Small Business Competition

WASHINGTON COAST–Do you have an idea for a small business that makes money, builds community, and protects the environment? Take a step to move your idea forward!

Washington Coast Works: Sustainable Small Business Competition ( kicks off with five community “ideation” events, to be held April 21-23 in Taholah, Aberdeen, La Push, Forks and Neah Bay. (Full schedule below.)

The Washington Coast Works competition offers budding entrepreneurs an opportunity to develop skills, get support and win cash to launch their businesses. The winner will receive $10,000 in startup funding, and two semifinalists will receive $5,000 each. Prize funding is provided by First Federal Savings and Loan Association of Port Angeles and the Quinault Indian Nation.

These three-hour workshops will:

• Answer all your questions about the competition, including how to apply, how the finalists and winners will be selected, what training and support will be provided, and more.

• Introduce you to the entrepreneur’s mindset, the opportunity discovery process, and sustainable “triple bottom line” businesses.

• Engage you in brainstorming activities designed to help generate ideas for new sustainable businesses that build leadership, contribute to conservation and keep money in the local economy.

All events are free and open to the public. No need to register in advance.

“This competition is a fantastic opportunity to develop some creative and unique sustainable businesses here in Grays Harbor. I would encourage anyone with an entrepreneurial spirit and a great business idea to attend the Ideation workshop to learn more about this opportunity” said Dru Garson, CEO of Greater Grays Harbor.

Entrants to the Washington Coast Works: Sustainable Small Business Competition, are encouraged but not required to attend one of these ideation events. Enter starting April 20 at Entries close June 19.

The competition is being presented by The Nature Conservancy in partnership with the Center for Inclusive Entrepreneurship at Pinchot University (formerly Bainbridge Graduate Institute) and the Taala Fund. USDA provided funding through its Rural Business Opportunity Grants to help launch the competition.

Ideation Events:

• Taholah – Tuesday, April 21, 10 a.m- 1 p.m.. Taholah Community Center,

• Aberdeen- Tuesday, April 21, 4 p.m.-7 p.m., GHC Whiteside Continuing Education Center

• La Push – Wednesday, April 22, 10 a.m.-1p.m., Tribal Office West Wing

• Forks- Wednesday, April 22, 4 p.m. – 7 p.m. Peninsula College

• Neah Bay – Thursday, April 23, 10 a.m. – 1 p.m. Marina building

See and click on a venue for location details.