Hundreds of events geared toward makers, innovators and job creators are expected to pop up later this month in one of Kansas City’s historic cultural epicenters.
“The 18th and Vine District has a rich history of entrepreneurship and has served as a hub for makers, dreamers and doers for decades,” said Jenny Miller, chief organizer of Global Entrepreneurship Week Kansas City and senior director of ecosystem development at the UMKC Innovation Center.
More than 200 free workshops and gatherings are planned Nov. 18-22 — primarily in the jazz district — as part of GEWKC, which seeks to empower participants to gain real-life tools and build their social networks of fellow business owners, mentors, coaches and even customers.
Among the can’t-miss events (click through events to build your own personal agenda):
Monday, Nov. 18
- 2 p.m. — How I learned to stop worrying and love machine learning (Chris Cheatham, RiskGenius)
- 2 p.m. — How to craft a side hustle (Joel Goldberg, JG Broadcasting, LLC)
- 2 p.m. — Won’t you be my neighbor: The importance of shared experiences in entrepreneurship (Matt Baysinger, Swell Spark)
- 6 p.m. — Rise Up, Get Started Entrepreneurship Showcase (Kyle Smith, Johnny Waller Jr., Determination, Incorporated)
Tuesday, Nov. 19
- 4 p.m. — Booze-free, it’s good for business (Melissa Saubers, Sans Bar Kansas City)
- 5:30 p.m. — Bunker Brews and Bunker Labs Kansas City official launch (Joe Crane, Bunker Labs)
- 6 p.m. — Startup Hustle Live (Matt DeCoursey, Matt Watson, Full Scale)
Wednesday, Nov. 20
- 8 a.m. — How they built it: how some of Kansas City’s top leaders grew their businesses (Scott Havens, Hub International, Top Gun; Aaron Fulk, Lillian James Creative)
- Noon — So you wanted to be fabulous? Fragrance designer workshop (Oie White, I Brew Perfume)
- 1 p.m. — AltCap Your Biz: Closing the Deal pitch competition (Davin Gordon, AltCap)
- 4:30 p.m. — AltCap Your Biz: Closing the Deal happy hour (Davin Gordon, AltCap)
Thursday, Nov. 21
- 10 a.m. — How Happy Food Co. turned a passion for food into a business (Kiersten Firquain, Happy Food Co.)
- Noon — Women-owned restaurants: How do we fund them in KC? (Morgan Perry, Square One Small Business Services)
- 6 p.m. — Ecosystems in color: The case for diverse ecosystem builders (Maleika Robinson, Eastside Collaborative, Forward Cities)
- 6 p.m. — Helping early-stage entrepreneurs solve tough challenges (Dan Smith, The Porter House KC/CHES, Inc.)
Friday, Nov. 22
- 8 a.m. — Five effective ways to pitch your business to the media (Burton Kelso, Integral)
- Noon — Being authentic: A look at diversity and inclusion in the plant-based food industry (LaDonna Johnson, Organic Soul KC, LLC)
Click here for a full list of GEWKC events.
“Entrepreneurs and small-business owners are the engine of our economy,” said Melissa Roberts, senior program officer in entrepreneurship at the Ewing Marion Kauffman Foundation. “Global Entrepreneurship Week Kansas City is all about helping them connect with like-minded folks as well as providing education, tools and resources to help them start or scale their business.”
The Kauffman Foundation founded GEW in 2008 and has since expanded it to more than 160 countries. The multi-day experience is a collaborative, open-sourced environment where local organizations create and host events that enhance the local business community.
This story is possible thanks to support from the Ewing Marion Kauffman Foundation, a private, nonpartisan foundation that works together with communities in education and entrepreneurship to create uncommon solutions and empower people to shape their futures and be successful.