Startup Weekend Butte March 27-29, 2015 – A big success!

Congratulations to our winners!

Item Bounty
Item Bounty

1st Place: Item Bounty | | | @itembounty

  • 1 week pass for each team member to Fountainhead Coworking in Butte

  • 2 weeks of daily coworking passes for each team member to The Shop Helena

  • Two hour team photo shoot on location of choice by ndigena

  • $100 Amazon e-gift card

  • Invest in Success Conference tickets

  • Feature story on Innovate Montana website

  • Meeting with the Governor’s Office of Economic Development

  • Two startup books


2nd Place: Steritite

  • 1 week of daily coworking passes for each team member to The Shop Helena
  • Team headshots by ndigena
  • $50 Amazon e-gift card
  • Two startup books
Big Sky University
Big Sky University

3rd Place: Big Sky University | | @bigskyu

  • 1 day coworking pass for each team member to The Shop Helena

  • Team headshots by ndigena

  • $50 Amazon e-gift card

  • One startup book

True Montana
True Montana

Crowd Favorite: True Montana | | | @TrueMTpodcast

  • Sticker Mule t-shirts (Thanks Stickermule!)

  • One startup book

Thanks to everyone who made this event a success!

Keynote Speaker: Martin Butts, Founder at Small Potatoes

  • Mentors/Coaches: Danny Choriki, Janice Copeland, Patrick Dudley, Wayne Gardella, Andrew Gordon, Julie Jaksha, Dan Lloyd, Ray Rogers, Andy Shirtliff, Joe Willauer, Andy Zdinak

  • The Judging Panel: Les Craig, Gary Gannon, Paul Gladen, Dawn McGee, Dev Warren

  • Organizers: 
Adam Benson, Pam Haxby-Cote, Julie Jaksha, Jennifer and Nathan Stephens

  • UP Global Team: Marc Nager, Startup Weekend Butte Facilitator and UP Global CEO; Martha Young, UP Global Executive Associate; Lauren Sauser, UP Global Managing Editor

  • Sponsors: Blackstone LaunchPad Montana, Headwaters RC&D, Butte-Silver Bow, Northwestern Energy, Montana Governor’s Office of Economic Development, Small Business Development Corporation Montana, Montana Food & Agriculture Development Network, Glaicer Bank, Granite Mountain Bank, Lisa Wareham Photography, Fountainhead Coworking, Content Monkeys, Insty-Prints of Butte, KBOW, KOPR, ndigena, Pioneer Technical Services Inc., and Yellow8Ball Customs.

Be Inspired To Redefine What Success Is And How You Can Achieve It

Martin-Butts-Small-PotatoesLet me start by saying thank you to the team at Startup Weekend Butte for bringing me out to Montana to share some of my experiences not only starting my own business, but also working with startups all over the country. I know how much work goes into putting events like this on, and the team, as well as Butte as a whole, has made me feel welcome at every turn. Starting a new business can be daunting, and it’s inspiring to see a group of committed individuals doing all they can to support new businesses in their community.

I feel grateful every day that I’ve been able to carve out my own corner of economic sustainability, doing work I love, especially at a time when most metrics were showing that the economy was failing so many people. While big businesses nationwide announce layoffs, cutbacks, and closings one week, and then record profits the next, Americans across the country have been left to fend for themselves in a quickly changing landscape.

And fend for ourselves we have. By starting our own businesses and hiring our neighbors. When the economy left us behind, we’ve built a new economy. An economy where sharing resources is more important than exploiting them. Where experience and a sense of place matter more than finding the cheapest price no matter what the true cost.

As this new economy has emerged, so has a shift in cultural perceptions about the economy. People are realizing that big businesses aren’t the ones creating the majority of jobs in our towns and cities, but that those jobs are being created by small businesses and startups. People are are looking to work with small locally owned businesses because they can see the evidence that doing so is an important part of the solution to improve our communities. We can’t wait around for someone else to solve our problems, and we don’t need to. The solutions are right there in front of us, so long as we have the tools we need to seize them.

Startup Weekend Butte is an opportunity to get an intensive education on the tools needed to take a hold of your future, and I hope that by sharing some of my experiences and trends from the new economy, attendees will be inspired to redefine what success is and how they can achieve it.

I’m looking forward to meeting you all soon. And if you haven’t gotten yourself registered yet, DO IT!

Martin Butts
Local Foods Advocate
Small Potatoes

Small Potatoes is celebrating it’s 5 year anniversary!

Butte, Montana Hosts Startup Weekend

Sign up to build entrepreneurial skills, network, and launch successful startups. Featuring Facilitator Marc Nager, CEO UP Global Keynote Speaker Martin Butts, Local Food Advocate, Small Potatoes


Event Name: Startup Weekend Butte
Event Date: March 27 – 29, 2015
Event Times: March 27, 6:30 to 10:00 p.m.;
March 28, 9:00 a.m. to 10:00 p.m.; and March 29, 9:00 a.m. to 9:00 p.m.
Event Location: Thornton Building, 65 E. Broadway, Butte, MT 59701
Contact: Pam Haxby-Cote or Adam Benson
Phone Number: 406.533.6781
Email Address: 
Web Site Address:

What’s happening and who’s it for?

Startup Weekend Butte is happening March 27-29, 2015, and will be the first event of its kind in Southwest Montana.

Startup Weekends are 54­-hour events where developers, designers, marketers, product managers, and startup enthusiasts come together to share ideas, form teams, build products, and launch startups! Local CEOs, founders, startup veterans, attorneys, publishers, professors, and economic developers with entrepreneurship, investing, marketing, and technology expertise will be on hand to coach teams.

UP Global currently powers Startup Weekend, Startup Digest, Startup Next, Education Entrepreneurs, and more. Entrepreneurship is something that can be both taught and learned, and UP Global is on a mission to ensure the world takes advantage of that.

Startup Weekend Butte kicks-off with a keynote address from foods advocate Martin Butts, founder of Small Potatoes. Small Potatoes is a New York-based boutique consulting firm specializing in working with food businesses of all kinds. Butts specifically focuses on developing fair and sustainable food systems that support independent businesses and healthier communities, and has worked with a variety of “foodrepreneurs” helping them turn their product ideas into businesses. He has spoken at conferences and summits around the country, including at TEDxUtica in October 2013. He has also spoken at universities, community centers, grocery stores, private homes, city parks, and on stairways and wooden crates.

Alongside members from the local tech and entrepreneur communities, Startup Weekend Butte will welcome students from Montana University System’s Blackstone LaunchPad’s at the University of Montana and Montana State University. The Blackstone Charitable Foundation knows that entrepreneurship is the single most effective way to spur economic growth and job creation. Through the Blackstone LaunchPad, students will have access to an expanded universe of resources and years of institutional knowledge, helping them launch ventures that can take root locally and strengthen Montana’s economy. Organizers intend the event to be a catalyst for the Butte and southwest Montana entrepreneurial community.

“Southwest Montana folks are entrepreneurial by nature… Startup Weekend Butte provides our local entrepreneurs with the opportunity to network, pitch their ideas, build teams, ideate and curate and launch a business– all in 54 hours,” Pam Haxby-Cote, Regional Director of the Blackstone LaunchPad Montana program, said.

Startup Weekend Butte is also excited to announce that the facilitator for the weekend is UP Global CEO Marc Nager. UP Global exists to empower startup community leaders and the entrepreneurs they serve worldwide. With a platform offering action-based learning programs, resources, and networks for entrepreneurs and leaders, UP Global aims to be the leading organization furthering human welfare through entrepreneurship.

Why attend a Startup Weekend event?

  • Education — learn by doing.
  • Build your network — meet talented entrepreneurs.
  • Find cofounder(s)
  • Learn a new skill — flex your technical and business muscle.
  • Get facetime with thought leaders — local leaders on tap.
  • Join a global community ­of over 45,000+ alumni out to change the world.

How is it done?

Beginning with open mic pitches on Friday, attendees bring their best ideas and inspire others to join their team. Over Saturday and Sunday teams focus on customer development, validating their ideas, practicing LEAN Startup Methodologies and building a minimal viable product. On Sunday evening teams demo their prototypes and receive valuable feedback from a panel of experts. Over 36% of Startup Weekend startups are still going strong after 3 months. Roughly 80% of participants plan on continuing working with their team or startup after the weekend. (Statistics from

When and where is it?

The detailed Startup Weekend Butte 2015 Schedule can be found online at The general hours of the event are Friday, March 27, 6:30 to 10:00 p.m.; Saturday, March 28, 9:00 a.m. to 10:00 p.m.; and Sunday, March 29, 9:00 a.m. to 9:00 p.m. It will be held at the Thornton Building, 65 E. Broadway.

How can I sign up?

Interested parties can click on the “Startup Weekend Butte” link at the main website, then either of the “Buy Tickets” buttons on the event page to sign up: Students tickets are offered at a discounted price and are limited. Contact event organizers for the student discount code. Registration includes all meals and caffeine. Attendees will also receive a custom team t-shirt and exclusive Startup Weekend perks.

About our local sponsors:

Thanks to our local sponsors Blackstone LaunchPad Montana, Headwaters RC&D, Butte-Silver Bow, Northwestern Energy, Glacier Bank, Granite Mountain Bank, Montana Food & Agriculture Development Network, Montana Governor’s Office of Economic Development, America’s Small Business Development Corporation Montana (SBDCMT), Lisa Wareham Photography, Content Monkeys, Fountainhead Coworking, Insty-Prints of Butte, KBOW, KOPR, ndigena, Pioneer Technical Services, and Yellow8Ball Customs.

Sponsorship opportunities still available, please contact us.


Startup Weekend is a program of UP Global along with Startup Next, Startup Digest and Education Entrepreneurs. UP Global is a nonprofit dedicated to fostering entrepreneurship, grassroots leadership, and strong communities around the world and in partnership with over 60 leaders and corporations including Google for Entrepreneurs, CocaCola, Amazon Web Services and the Case Foundation. Read UP Global’s White Paper on, ” Fostering A Thriving Startup Ecosystem

Revised: March 27, 2015 02:40 AM