For the second year, Green County Development Corporation (GCDC) and The Bank of New Glarus hosted the Small Business Series & Pitch Contest, a training program for small business owners and aspiring entrepreneurs. The event culminated with participants ‘pitching’ their business idea to a group of judges for a chance to win a cash prize.

Beginning April 3rd, 17 aspiring Green County entrepreneurs participated in weekly sessions that included information on developing their business plan, connecting with a mentor, understanding financing and how to market their business. Each session allowed time for entrepreneurs to network within the group, creating valuable connections and support. Participants were also able to connect 1:1 with Nora Roughen-Schmidt, business consultant for the Southwest Wisconsin Small Business Development Center (SBDC). “This series is an economic development driver that empowers participants with education, resources, consulting, and relationships. It is exciting to participate and assist in developing new businesses in Green County.” Roughen-Schmidt said.

Ron Schaaf, President and CEO of The Bank of New Glarus stated, “The Bank of New Glarus is proud to partner with GCDC on this program. The entrepreneurs who attend have many great ideas, and we wish them all the best as they move forward with opening businesses across Green County.”

The Pitch Contest, sponsored by The Bank of New Glarus provided cash prizes to the top three pitches. Judges ranked presentations on problem identification and solution, target market, competition and unique selling position, business viability, and pitch quality.

Eleven (11) Green County entrepreneurs pitched their business, and included:

1st Place Kindred Spirits Meadery (Stephen Ilzenhuiser): custom mead producer

2nd Place Arrow Acres (Susan Anderson): custom woodworking, hobby farm

3rd Place Small Business Owners Coaching (Marechiel Santos-Lang): group and 1:1 coaching for small business owners

Daisy’s Axe Box (presented by Todd & Brenda Coy): an entertainment company providing axe throwing for private parties and community events

Bellebrook Botanicals (Monica Pastrana): wellness support with small batch herbal products

Whole-Hearted Apothecary (Lula Miller): master herbalist, educational speaker and events

Heidi’s Happy Acres (Heidi Kent): specialty produce, pumpkin and sunflower patch, corn maze and family activities.