What happens at Startup Weekend?

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Can you really define a “typical startup”? In that vein, can you really define a “typical Startup Weekend”? Probably [and hopefully] not, but it’s always good to have a rough idea of how the weekends tend to play out.

Note that times and actually just about everything is subject to change. This is just a rough idea.

May 20th: Friday Night

5:30-6pm: Doors Open.
Arrive, Register, Network, etc.

7pm: Kick-off.
The organizers and facilitator will introduce themselves, talk a little bit about Startup Weekend in general and introduce the sponsors.

7:15pm: Pitch.
Everyone who wants to has 1 minute to pitch their idea. The timer is strictly enforced. There are no limits on number of pitches…so you can pitch twice, once everyone is through the first round.

After the Pitches:
-Teams will naturally organize. If you like something you heard, go talk to the pitcher. If you pitched, try to mobilize a team. The final number of teams is up the group, though it’s important to try to cover roles on each: biz dev, designers, UI, developers, etc.
-Refine your concept and decide how you’ll attack things.
– Then, it’s go go go, until you decide to call it quits or pull the all-nighter.

May 21st: Saturday

8:30am: Good morning sunshines.
Facilities open (24-hour access available if you work through the night). Get there early as there will be breakfast and plenty of CAFFEINE.

-Saturday is a work day. Solidify ideas as early as possible and keep chuggin’.

11:30am: Formal-ish Checkin.
We’ll ask a rep from each team to meet with the organizers and facilitator to give an overview of what the team is doing, where they are and where they see themselves going.

12:30pm: Lunch.

7pm: Gut Check.
Basic prototyping and surrounding business development efforts (financial modeling, site, PR, marketing plan, etc) should be in order

Rest of your night: Keep working, grab a drink, or both.

May 22nd: Sunday

8:30am: Final Countdown.
Facilities open (24-hour access available if you work through the night). Get there early as there will be breakfast and plenty of CAFFEINE.

11:30am: Formal-ish Checkin.
We’ll ask a rep from each team to meet with the organizers and facilitator to give an overview of what the team is doing, where they are and where they see themselves going.

12:30pm: Lunch.

3pm: Finishing Touch.
Nearly sink-or-swim time for those looking for a weekend launch.

5:30pm: Presentations.
Nothing formal. Each team will share: What’s your idea? What worked? What didn’t? What could be better? More importantly… ARE YOU LAUNCHING?

8pm: Don’t have to go home but you gotta leave.
Closing events and teary-eyed good-byes.

Remember: This is a startup atmosphere. Just because a team forms Friday night around an idea doesn’t mean that team is intact Sunday or that the idea that was pitched is the business.  Teams can form, break apart… rogue teams can mobilize. We’re just looking for great things Sunday!