What's the BIG Idea?

08/10/2014 | By Troy Hawks

This post originally appeared on blog.up.co

[caption id="attachment_18053" align="alignright" width="458"]breck 2 Beautiful Breckenridge, Colorado hosts Startup Weekend Aug. 15-17.
What's Your BIG Idea?[/caption]

If you’ve been thinking about the next best thing, or thinking that “there outta be this,” or “there outta be that,” then your weekend is coming up! Breckenridge Startup Weekend (happening Aug. 15-17) gives anyone the opportunity to pitch an idea to a group of local executives and entrepreneurs and ultimately receive their expert advice and help in creating a winning business plan.

So if you’ve been waiting for your time to shine, this just might be your moment. But don’t take our word for it. Here is an excerpt from “Educator Turned Entrepreneur- How I Found my Entrepreneurial Spark”a blog post written by teacher-slash-entrepreneur Maggie Croushore, who is now the founder of KidFit Academy, thanks to her own Startup Weekend experience.

“Three years ago, an educator and graduate student blissfully unaware of the language and philosophies of entrepreneurship, I went to a Startup Weekend Education in Washington, DC.  My intention was to observe and see what this whole “startup weekend” madness was about; I figured that I might meet some cool people and, if nothing else, get a free meal.  I had no intention of pitching an idea and figured that I would probably just attend Friday and maybe, if I had time, Sunday.

However, something magical happened in the car on the way to Georgetown.  I was riding with three other teachers, talking about our days and expectations for the weekend.  The driver, a “techie” teacher already using cutting-edge technology in his classroom, was planning on pitching a platform to better organize real time student data.  The other teachers talked about some ideas and hopes that they had for the weekend.  I sat quietly and began to think about an idea I had had for some time.

As a middle school literacy teacher, I saw that my students struggled to sit still for my extended block.  I also knew, from a background in studying childhood obesity, that my students did not get enough physical movement...I desired to find a way to bring purposeful fitness education to schools so that all students could experience the transformative power of fitness in their lives as I had in my own.

So, in the back seat of a car filled with educators on the way to our first Startup Weekend experience, I gained the courage to conceptualize my idea and pitch it to a room of 100 strangers.  It wasn’t the most polished pitch, but I did it. And I am so glad that I did.

My idea, KidFit, made it to the top 10!  I was beyond ecstatic.  I went from being a casual observer to a full-on participant in the weekend. ..KidFit did not necessarily take shape that weekend, but I did.  I learned the power of entrepreneurship and the ability of a few committed people to join together and turn dreams into realities.

That weekend was the spark that grew into what is now my “full-time” job as founder of KidFit Academy.  It is not an easy journey; every day requires patient perseverance with a clear focus and constant reflection.  But I could not imagine doing anything else.”

Now it’s your turn!

Breckenridge Startup Weekend starts at 6:30 p.m. Friday, Aug. 15 and runs through 9 p.m. Sunday, Aug. 17 at Colorado Mountain College in Breckenridge. For more information or tickets, visit www.breckenridge.startupweekend.org

Connect with us on social at www.facebook.com/swbreck or on Twitter @SWBreckenridge.



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