Small-business symposium set today at Port Townsend cafe

By Charlie Bermant
Peninsula Daily News

PORT TOWNSEND — Small-business owners can get some free advice and help with their business plans at a symposium today.

The free symposium will be from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. in the space above the Silverwater Cafe, 237 Taylor St.

“We want to expose local businesses to the breadth of local resources that are available to them,” said Heather Dudley Nollette, one of the organizers.

“They will have the opportunity to talk to experts and plug into the local business support network.”

The gathering is sponsored by the CoLab, which is establishing a space where entrepreneurs can share resources and work together, along with the Jefferson County Chamber of Commerce’s Young Professionals Network, Team Jefferson of Jefferson County’s Economic Development Council and the Port Townsend Main Street Program.

What it includes

The agenda includes four small-business workshops and panel discussions scheduled throughout the day, free 15-minute business interviews by appointment with an EDC Team Jefferson member to assess next steps in starting or growing a business, an opportunity for local providers of “business-to-business” services to network with one another and information about each of the sponsoring organizations.

There also will be an opportunity to see how the CoLab is planning to design its new space, give feedback to influence the final design and apply to become a CoLab member.

“Now is a great time to start a business,” Nollette said.

“The economy hasn’t completely rebounded, but the best way to rebuild it is by localizing and taking advantage of what’s around you.”

‘A first step’

Nollette said she “doesn’t have a crystal ball” as to what businesses are most likely to thrive in Port Townsend, but having a sense of what the market needs is a first step toward success.

“There are a lot of opportunities here,” Nollette said.

“And this workshop gives people a chance to talk to each other.”

After the event, the Young Professionals Network will host a 21-and-older after-party networking mixer, with food and drinks available for purchase from the Silverwater Cafe and Mezzaluna Lounge.

Admission is $5 for those who are not members of the Jefferson County Chamber of Commerce or Young Professionals Network.

Members of those organizations will be admitted free.

For more information, visit


Jefferson County Reporter Charlie Bermant can be reached at 360-385-2335 or at

Last modified: October 11. 2012 5:27PM
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