Business symposium offers free activities throughout Port Townsend on Thursday, Friday

PORT TOWNSEND — The fifth annual Collaborative Business Symposium will offer activities Thursday and Friday as part of Global Entrepreneurship Month.

The event has grown since last year, expanding to two full days of activities, in addition to a workshop held Tuesday on how to sell a business.

Activities are free and are meant to bring together local entrepreneurs and other people interested in business to celebrate and learn from those who drive the local economy, according to a news release from event organizer Heather Dudley-Nollette of the CoLab, an office space in downtown Port Townsend.

Activities will be held at the CoLab, Business Resource Center and Key City Playhouse, Dudley-Nollette said.

Thursday’s events start at 9 a.m. in the CoLab on the second floor of 237 Taylor St. The CoLab will be open for free from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. to be used as a work and networking space. Usually, the CoLab requires membership.

Free service consultations

The CoLab also will host free service consultations starting at 10 a.m. and ending at 4:30 p.m. To register for the sessions, go to

Thursday night will be one in a series of discussions hosted by the CoLab each year called “CoLab Straight Talk.” The topic is “innovation.”

The discussions aim to help new and current business owners talk about how to make their businesses successful, specifically in Jefferson County, according to a news release.

The discussion will run from 5 p.m. to 6:30 p.m. and also will be at the CoLab.

Friday’s events will be at the Business Resource Center, 2409 Jefferson St.

Seminars will include such topics as harnessing social media, business financing and business grants.

They will be hosted by members of the Jefferson County Economic Development Council as well as such local business experts as one of CoLab’s founders, Frank DePalma of Totera Web Systems, and Bill Lowry with Olympic Research Inc.

To end the symposium on an inspirational note, the final event will be “Five Minutes of Brilliance” — a collection of five-minute stories of local business success — at the Key City Playhouse, 419 Washington St., from 5:30 p.m. to 7 p.m. Friday.

“Our motto is ‘independent together,’” said Dudley-Nollette in the news release.

“The more opportunities we can create for small businesses to succeed and create meaningful jobs, and to encourage working families to stay or move to our community, the closer we are to economic and cultural sustainability.

“That’s true quality of life.”

While events are free, Dudley-Nollette said they fill up fast, so attendees are encouraged to register at the CoLab website,


Jefferson County Editor/Reporter Cydney McFarland can be reached at 360-385-2335, ext. 55052, or at