Startup Weekend Cedar Rapids 2016

    Friday, March 4 - 6, 2016

  1. Overview
  2. Schedule
  3. Judges
  4. Coaches and Mentors
  5. Sponsors
  6. Organizing Team
  7. Blog
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Startup Weekend Cedar Rapids 2016

Friday, March 4 - 6, 2016

Friday, March 4 - 6, 2016
Event starts at 6:30 pm

Iowa Startup Accelerator
415 12th Ave SE
Cedar Rapids, Iowa 52401

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Trust your crazy ideas

Startup Weekend is a 54 hour event that brings together Cedar Rapids designers, developers, entrepreneurs, and experts from all domains to do amazing things.

Friday Night Kickoff:
Time: 6:30PM
What: Friday night will include a pitch fire where the ideas worked on for Startup Weekend will be determined, there will be speakers, food, and networking.
Catalyst Cafe (1st Floor of Geonetric Building), 415 12th Ave SE, Cedar Rapids, IA

Sunday Night Demo Day:
Time: 6:00PM
What: The culmination of Startup Weekend where teams will pitch what they've worked on for the weekend.
Where: Whipple Auditorium at the Cedar Rapids Public Library, 450 5th Ave SE, Cedar Rapids, IA

What's included with a ticket?
- Meals from Cedar Ridge, Brewhemia, Greyhound Deli, a Private Chef, The Early Bird, Get Fresh, and Prairie Soup Company.
- Drinks from Lion Bridge Brewery on Friday Night.
- Nearly bottomless coffee and BAWLS energy drinks.
- Startup Weekend Cedar Rapids t-shirt (Guaranteed if ticket is bought by 2/24).
- A weekend you'll never forget.
- The opportunity to meet some of the brightest minds in the Corridor in one of the coolest spaces in the area.

Get your tickets today!


Friday March 4th

6:30 pm
Registration, Dinner, and networking
Arrive at the venue and get checked in. Eat food, share ideas, practice pitches, get to know fellow participants. Location: Catalyst Cafe (1st Floor of Geonetric Building), 415 12th Ave SE, Cedar Rapids, IA

7:00 pm
Startup Weekend Kickoff
We'll have a speaker and welcome you to the greatest weekend of your life!

7:15 pm
Half Baked Ideas
There's no great way to describe how fun this is!

7:30 pm
Pitches Fire
Everyone has the opportunity to pitch their crazy idea.

8:15 pm
Voting round 1
Attendees vote for the top pitches

8:30 pm
Re-Pitch Fire
The top voted ideas re-pitch their idea.

9:15 pm
Form Teams
Teams start forming and discussing ideas

10:00 pm
Begin Work
Start to formalize teams and take an inventory of skills. Be honest, and direct about what resources and skills are needed for the weekend. You may stay and work as late as the venue will allow

Saturday March 5th

7:45 am
Morning Yoga to start the day in the Iowa Startup Accelerator.

8:00 am
Breakfast from Brewhemia
Arrive, simple breakfast & coffee

8:00 am
Begin Work
Doors will be open and teams can begin work on their schedule.

9:00 am
Customer Discovery Workshop
A quick 30 minute Workgroup in the Catalyst Cafe to go over the basics of Customer Discovery.

9:30 am
Work Time
Get going and trust your crazy ideas!

12:00 pm
Lunch from Greyhound Deli

12:30 pm
Mentors start to arrive
Ask questions, get feedback from some of the brightest minds!

1:00 pm
Work Time

5:30 pm
Dinner by Chef Andy
We'll be having a private Chef making us dinner in the Catalyst Cafe.

6:30 pm
Work Time

10:00 pm
Finished for the day. You may stay and work as late as the venue will allow

Sunday March 6th

7:45 am
Morning Yoga to start the day in the Iowa Startup Accelerator.

8:00 am
Breakfast from The Early Bird
Arrive, simple breakfast & coffee

9:00 am
Work Time

11:00 am
Midday Juice from Get Fresh

11:30 am
Work Time
Time to make sure you're working on your final pitch.

2:00 pm
Late Lunch from Prairie Soup Company

3:00 pm
Work Time
Final touches on Pitches

4:00 pm
Deck Check
Verify your deck is ready for your pitch.

5:30 pm
Presentation Prep & Tech Check
Tech-check for final presentations takes place in Whipple Auditorium at the Cedar Rapids Public Library.

6:00 pm
Final Presentations @ Whipple Auditorium
We'll be holding Demo Day Pitches at Whipple Auditorium inside the Cedar Rapids Public Library. Location: 450 5th Ave SE, Cedar Rapids, IA

7:30 pm
Judging & Awards

8:30 pm

9:00 pm
Go Home!

Event Judges

Tim McDougall
Founder/President of BuiltByLocal Ventures

Tim McDougall is the founder and president of BuiltByLocal Ventures, which helps local media companies across the country invest in early stage startups – specifically, startups that need advertising and promotional support to get launched. Prior to founding BuiltByLocal in April 2015, Tim was the Vice President of Strategic Innovation and Publisher for The Gazette Company in Cedar Rapids. His experience before that includes major innovation and turnaround efforts at Miller Brewing Company, the Houston Rockets, and P. F. Chang's China Bistro, Inc.

Steve Shriver

Steve Shriver is an entrepreneurial pioneer in the organic and sustainability movement. He has been in the natural and organic skin care business since 1997, founding and selling skin care manufacturer Raining Rose, then founding Eco Lips Organic Lip Balm located in Cedar Rapids, Iowa.  He also co-owns Brewhemia, the busiest locally owned coffee shop in Cedar Rapids.  Steve was named Entrepreneur of the year by the Corridor Business Journal in 2014.  Eco Lips has been consistently awarded fastest growing company by INC Magazine and the Corridor Business Journal.

Lisa Spellman
International Secretary, ISO/TC215 at AHIMA

Lisa Spellman is an international expert in the development and adoption of health information technology (HIT). In her current capacity she has three unique roles: she leads the Office of the ISO Technical Committee (ISO/TC) 215 for Health Informatics Secretariat, is the executive administrator for the U.S. Technical Advisory Group (US TAG) to ISO/TC215, and is the Director of Global Standards for the American Health Information Management Association (AHIMA).

Susan Corrigan
President & Treasurer of St. Martin Land Company

Ms. Corrigan is President and Treasurer of St. Martin Land Company.  Before joining the Company in April 2012, Ms. Corrigan was a controller for Transamerica.  Her prior work experience includes Amoco Oil Company, McGladrey & Pullen, and Alliant Energy. She possesses skills in business valuations, merger and acquisition analysis, business and performance planning and leading organizations through significant change.  Ms. Corrigan graduated with highest distinction from the University of Iowa with a B.B.A. in accounting.  Her M.B.A., also from the University of Iowa, emphasized finance and management and organizations.  She is an inactive status certified public accountant (CPA). 

Cammie Greif

Ms. Greif co-founded TaxACT, Inc., an online tax software company based in Cedar Rapids, Iowa, in 1998 and acted as Chief Marketing Officer until 2012 when the company was sold to Blucora.  Ms. Greif currently manages the finances of the family’s farming operation, investment securities, commercial real estate and other alternative investments.  She also dedicates her time to enriching the entrepreneurial community as a mentor-in-residence at the Iowa Startup Accelerator and participates in other entrepreneur-related events. Ms. Greif serves on the Mount Mercy University Board of Trustees, the Board of Directors of Timberline Manufacturing in Marion, and the Board of Directors of St. Martin Land Company, Cedar Rapids, Iowa.   She received a B.B.A. in accounting and business administration from Mount Mercy College in 1988, and is an inactive status certified public accountant (CPA).

Coaches and Mentors

Kenny Stevenson
Co-Founder HowFactory

Scott Swenson
Regional Director, Kirkwood SBDC

Linda Barnes
COO Geonetric

Becky Smith
Founder LodeStar Engineering

Jason Kristufek
Founder and CEO of Fanstreamm

Josh Krakauer

Amanda Lesmeister
Co-Founder Iowa Fashion Project

Connor Schulte
Web Designer at Geonetric

Keevin O'Rourke
Startup Weekend Facilitator, Entrepreneur

Cody Caraway

Event Sponsors, and Partners

The Startup Weekend Cedar Rapids 2016 team is grateful for the support of local community partners without whom this event would not be possible.
Learn how to become a sponsor here.





Organizing Team

Techstars Startup Weekend Cedar Rapids is 100% led by volunteer community leaders.
Learn how to get involved here

  • David
  • N/A
  • Joshua
  • Mark
  • Sarah
  • Jessalyn
  • Trevor


Michael Norton
Entrepreneur In Residence

Michael has led over 60 Techstars Startup Weekend events throughout the US, Canada, and Australia. He teaches workshops, designs programs, and speaks on a variety of topics related to innovation and entrepreneurship.

Michael has worked professionally in marketing technology startups, with big data, non-profit fundraising, customer support systems design, technical project management, educational program development, event production and decor, iOS app design, video games, user testing, prototyping, and in the coffee industry.

His own past and present business ventures include several SaaS web app platforms, photography, woodworking, printing, audio engineering, video production, musical composition/recording/performance, publishing, art curation, operating an Amazon Pro Merchant storefront, and a funnel cake stand.

Michael guides innovative communities to build and nurture regional entrepreneurial ecosystems. He guides corporations through internal innovation and intrapreneurship. 

He frequently works as a freelance business development consultant, crowdfunding guru, technical project manager, and as a marketer — focused on branding, messaging, storytelling, social media, and email marketing.

Michael loves hiking in Yosemite, bicycling around San Diego, eating authentic Baja California Mexican food, and drinking amazing coffee in Seattle.

Event Blog

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