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November 25, 2012 | Tom Ballard

Lawrence reflects on recent event, urges support for local winner

The following email was sent by Dave Lawrence of AccelNow regarding the recent “Startup Weekend TriCities” and the importance of supporting the only Tennessee company in the national finals.

Startup Weekend TriCities, organized and sponsored by AccelNow, ETSU CBAT and Synaptian Inc, was a tremendous success! We registered 42 entrepreneurs and had about 55 people participate, including organizers, coaches, judges and observers. About one third of the participants were ETSU students, faculty and staff. The event was held in Sam Wilson Hall and Brown Hall Auditorium on the ETSU campus.

The entrepreneurs pitched 15 business ideas, the group voted and 5 teams formed and worked long hours throughout the weekend developing businesses. The winner, 30 Day Photo Challenge, was selected by a team of judges based on presentations given Sunday evening. The team developed a working phone app prototype over the weekend and impressed the judges with the novelty of the idea, their technical and business expertise to develop the idea into a business, and with the strength and diversity of their team.

Startup Weekend TriCities was the first official Startup Weekend event to be held in the State of TN. Since it was held during Global Entrepreneurship Week, the winner was eligible to enter the Global Startup Battle, a video pitch competition of the 138 Startup Weekend winners during GEW from around the world. We would like your help in publicizing the event and getting votes for 30 Day Photo Challenge in the GSB, by distributing the attached press release and encouraging everyone to vote online by going to  

This is the only entry in the State of TN to the Global Startup Battle.  

Here’s a link to the final cut of video submission of our winner to Global Startup Battle: The video was produced by a local entrepreneur, Kyle Long, at Digital Fridge.  

Thanks in advance for support of this key AccelNow Initiative and for 30 Day Photo Challenge in the Global Startup Battle.  

P.S. – We had so much fun with Startup Weekend that we begin meeting on Monday to make plans for Startup Weekend TriCities II, to be held in the Spring.  


The news release referenced follows.

Johnson City, TN, November 20, 2012: Did you have an idea that could possibly become a reality if you found the right people and resources that could point you in the direction of success? The winner of the first ever Startup Weekend in TN, 30 Day Photo Challenge has experienced what it is like to launch a startup in 54 hours and now needs your help to win the Global Startup Battle against 1000+ startups all over the world.

The entrepreneurial spirit that came out of East TN at Startup Weekend produced a defined and distinguished “social” photo challenge platform that engages users to win challenges, create memories, and enjoy it with friends and family. Winning Global Startup Battle is a chance to put Tri-Cities on the map as a region that has can house thriving businesses and big ideas. Again, they need your vote, and this is how.

  • Go to and follow the link to vote on Facebook
  • You can vote once per day, every day from Nov. 21st to Nov. 27th
  • Watch the video and learn more about 30 Day Photo Challenge
  • Share on Facebook, Twitter, and other social media platforms
  • Keep the entrepreneurial spirit alive and watch it thrive in Tri-Cities Region

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