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Scissors and construction paper modeling gained new life for blossoming entrepreneurs in Tampa Bay. The group cooperated in teams for three days, learning about startup principles– and pitfalls– from a team of successful geezers…er, mentors.

Two bright young entrepreneurs, brothers Tristan and Tyler Crawford, were among the enthusiastic crowd of middle school students

Over the course of the weekend, the brothers launched a business plan for a ‘cooling device’ they designed to beat the Florida heat. They are currently exploring a patent to protect their idea, and have used the skills they learned at Startup Weekend Youth to begin raising money through a GoFundMe account (http://www.gofundme.com/egkv9s). They also landed a spot on Tampa Bay’s Amazing Kids!

Startup Weekend, Startup Weekend Tampa Bay, Tampa Bay

“My brother [Tyler] and I attended the Startup Weekend Youth event because we had an idea and wanted to learn how to start a business,” Tristan Crawford, 13, said via email. “We focused on several main points, including cost, marketing, distribution, research, pitching a product, and competition… we are currently working on our project by doing further research and testing.”

When asked what he would say to other young people with business ideas, Crawford reminds his peers that even a little idea can develop into something great.

“I heard about the Startup Weekend from my school… They were hosting and promoting the course,” Crawford said. “My favorite part of the weekend was the presentation or the ‘pitch’ because I really got to work on my presentational skills and [the mentor process] helped me with my confidence in speaking in front of an audience. This is useful when I am selling my product and trying to raise money.”

By providing the same type of focal camaraderie that makes Startup Weekend an effective hub for adult learning and friendship, Startup Weekend Youth helped two adolescent brothers play nicely together for three whole days, while raising money… a true startup miracle.

Tampa Bay Startup Week is coming (Feb 2-6) bringing alllll the hot events, speakers and more! Tap in to your local community and reap the rewards.–> http://bit.ly/1yRrgD6


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Ross Buchanan