Startup Weekend – Recap + Photos

I spent my weekend in a building full of high energy, motivation and serious talent. Columbus Startup Weekend is a place where creatives, hackers, hustlers, dreamers and inventors all get together in one space for 54 hours and build a company out of nothing.

The 60-second pitches started Friday night – there were 42. Ideas ranged from drinking apps to a tech haunted house to accountant marketplace. After the pitches, chaos ensues… Everyone that pitched runs around the room collecting votes and forming teams. From there, the teams start building and don’t stop until Sunday evening demos/pitches in front of the judges. I didn’t join a team but I spent the whole weekend there working on my own startup, getting energy from the others and connecting with tons of people. I was so impressed with the event – especially how well organized it was. Brian, Suzy and Steve did such an awesome job of keeping everything moving smoothly and encouraging the teams along the way.

Dan Rockwell posted a great review of all the startups, so I won’t get into each one but my favorites were:

Simple Leaf – Handcrafted, quality curated tea selections, originally planned as a tea of the month club. But let’s talk about the design of this site… wow. I also love tea and the blends sound delicious.

QuickSpoon – Never eat alone again! All you do is click the “I’m hungry!” button and you can see on the app, people around you or in your network that are also hungry.  The team was great, the pitch was great and the idea was great. Below is a photo from their facebook page – these are all of the other names that they considered when coming up with QuickSpoon.

Phone Fiction – Books by text. The founder of this app is a passionate author and editor of short fiction and made a big impact on the idea behind the app. During the weekend I received a text from them that just said “I woke up sewn inside of a bear carcass.” and then another text “Interested? Read More. (link to post)” After opening the link, it said I had a 3 min. time commitment so I sat and read the chapter. It was very interesting. At the end, you can choose to sign up, pay and read the rest or wait 24hrs for the next chapter.

All of the teams showed an enormous amount of drive and enthusiasm through the process. Startup Weekend is a great way to connect aspiring entrepreneurs with the resources they need to make stuff happen! Maybe I’ll even pitch my other startup idea next time…

Enjoy the photos that Adam and I took throughout the weekend.

Have you been to Startup Weekend? Share your experience in the comments below!