The Tug Valley Chamber of Commerce, in partnership with Healthy in the Hills, is seeking young people with an interest in developing their own business to participate in a special upcoming event at the Williamson Farmers Market at the end of July.
Chamber President Chris Dotson said Young Entrepreneurs Day is an opportunity to instill the vision of business ownership in local young people.
“Our schools have really good business, engineering, graphic arts, metal works and shop programs,” Dotson said. “Our students need to learn that these can give them the skills to have their own businesses. So often, they don’t realize what opportunities might exist. The skills they have don’t have to be just hobbies.”
The event is open to all youth ages 8 to 18, Dotson said. Participants will be allowed to set up booths at the Farmers Market at no charge and they will be able to keep all proceeds from sales of products at their booths. Participants will be grouped into three categories: 8 -11, 12-15 and 16-18.
“Even though we are having the categories, this is not a competition,” Dotson said. “It just allows attendees to see the abilities of the students by their age. We hope to see lots of arts and crafts. I, personally, would love to see a young child set up a lemonade stand. We want to encourage and develop a drive for business ownership.”
The Young Entrepreneurs Day will be held Saturday, July 25, at the Williamson Farmers Market located on the corner of Third Avenue and Harvey Street. Dotson said that participants are expected to be ready at 9 a.m. when the market opens and to plan on being there until it closes at 2 p.m. All applications must be submitted on or before Thursday, July 9.
Dotson said all products must be homemade or handcrafted. Food offerings may have additional guidelines which will be provided to participants. Booths may be decorated to attract more attention. Also, booths/businesses can be operated by more than one person if people want to work together.
“Besides being given free booth space, our young entrepreneurs will be paired with a Chamber member two weeks before the event that will mentor them with things such as marketing/advertising, price pointing, creating displays and sales techniques,” Dotson said.
Dotson said she hopes some of the participants will be able to make some of their products on site or to conduct demonstrations to entertain visitors at the market.
More information and applications may be found on the Tug Valley Chamber of Commerce’s Facebook Page.