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The biggest startup competition in the world is finally back.

On November 13th-15th thousands of entrepreneurs from all over the world will gather in over 200 cities to put their startup ideas to the test and see if they have what it takes to start a company. Of course, Chicago won’t be the exception! Having spawned technology companies such as FishBit and WeDeliver, Chicago is a very real contender for a global win.

For those unfamiliar with Startup Weekend, our motto is “No Talk. All Action.” In other words, don’t expect to sit around and listen to talks and presentations. This is not that kind of event. If you sign up, you will work your ass off. You will be challenged with different perspectives. More often than not, you will discover that what you thought was a great idea is actually not, but that’s ok! Startup Weekend is about learning, collaborating with others, and getting a taste of what it feels like to start and run a company in the real world.

The event will kick off Friday afternoon with a round of pitches from entrepreneurs, followed by a voting session to determine which ideas will move forward. At this time, participants will have the option to join teams to work on the ideas they like the most. Over the course of the weekend, teams will get market feedback for their ventures, figure out what works and what doesn’t, and refine their business models. It’s a great learning experience that allows entrepreneurs to get a deeper understanding of their potential customers and the most effective ways to market their products. Finally, on Sunday afternoon, the teams present the results of their work to a panel of judges including high-profile members of the startup community. The event winner will then move on to the next round of the competition and face other winning teams in the region. Ultimately, regional winners compete on a global stage to determine the best global startup idea/team.

Does this all seem challenging? It should! Fortunately, you won’t be alone. Startup Weekend is a network of passionate leaders and entrepreneurs on a mission to inspire, educate, and empower individuals, teams and communities. For this reason, during the weekend you will have access to a group of volunteer professionals from industries such as software development, social entrepreneurship, data analytics and venture capital that will be there to answer any/all questions you may have in their particular fields. So what do you think? Are you up to the challenge? If so, come share ideas, form teams, and launch startups!

For more info and tickets: http://www.up.co/communities/usa/chicago/startup-weekend/7653

Carlos Pena