Hundreds of techies, innovators and entrepreneurs converged in Kansas City for the third annual Techweek KC conference, which launched Monday and runs through Friday.
The Chicago-based conference series, which focuses on innovation and entrepreneurship, returned to the City of Fountains for a five-day conference, expo and festival. It is one of nine such events across North America, gathering tech visionaries and thought leaders.
Monday’s kickoff party was organized at Boulevard Beer Hall to give outsiders a taste of Kansas City. Techweek CEO Amanda Signorelli said at the event that Kansas City has a special place in her heart.
“That’s because it was the very first market that I launched Techweek in and it was met with incredible success,” she said. “I can tell you, every time we come back, it gets bigger, better, more engaged and more powerful — every single time.”
The enthusiasm of Kansas Citians exemplifies the strength of the entrepreneurial ecosystem, Signorelli said.
“People here are so engaged and are always asking us questions, ‘What’s next? What can we do? How can we further this?’” Signorelli said. “That type of back and forth is something that makes the Kansas City market unique, and I’m incredibly thankful for it.”
With a Boulevard brew in hand, the event attracted more than 100 people and garnered excitement for the coming events on the Techweek schedule, including such highlights as the LaunchKC grant competition
Drew Solomon, senior vice president of business development at the Economic Development Corporation of Kansas City, said he is excited for the grant competition and for the other Techweek events.
“I really want to thank our sponsors and thank Kansas City as a community for embracing this, hosting this and making Techweek all it could be here in Kansas City,” he said.
Below is a photo gallery from the event.