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The ENGAGE Business Challenge

February 12, 2019 @ 12:00 am - May 10, 2019 @ 11:59 pm

The ENGAGE Business Challenge

Invest in yourself, your business dream, and our community.

The Business Challenge is a competitive process that will award up to $11,000 in business investment grants and valuable business services for new entrepreneurial ventures and existing businesses looking to expand with additional job creation within the identified region.

This three-month business training, networking, and mentorship opportunity will result in a pitch night in Delta. You will be introduced to opportunities and incentives in towns throughout the region to find the perfect location for your business—and a community that wants you to succeed.


Details of the competition

The Benefits of Participation

Challengers have the opportunity to compete for the top award of $5,000 and smaller cash awards for second, third, fourth, and fifth places. In addition to the cash awards, the top 5 businesses will each receive a tailored package of valuable business services. Examples of services are: business consulting, several free months of internet and/or co-working space, marketing assistance, or help in securing and/or renovating a location. All participants will develop a deeper understanding of how to create a business plan, be partnered with a mentor, have networking opportunities with other regional entrepreneurs, and learn of business incentives and location opportunities throughout the area. 

Eligible Region

This pilot competition is open to businesses and entrepreneurs seeking to establish businesses within the region from Olathe to Somerset (including Somerset, Paonia, Crawford, Hotchkiss, Orchard City, Cedaredge, Delta and Olathe). This competition seeks to enhance the main streets/downtown business district in these communities and other commercial areas in the targeted region.

Eligible Categories

To be eligible, you must have a business or business idea that you want to pursue in one of the six categories.
  • Arts and Culture– emphasis on products or offerings that value handmade, authentic and distinctive of Western Slope culture
  • Outdoor Recreation– emphasis on products or offerings that promote, showcase, or make use of natural assets and outdoor opportunities
  • Value Added Agriculture/Agritourism– emphasis on products or offerings that use raw indigenous materials, and through production, create a product offering that has a substantially higher value.
  • Restaurants & Hospitality/ Agritourism– emphasis on services that provide meals, lodging, or other guest services that enhance the visitor and/or tourist experience
  • Technology/Advanced Manufacturing– emphasis on industries that use advanced technology to improve their products or services
  • Other & Support Services/None of the above – emphasis on activities that support any of the above categories.

Participation Requirements

While this is a free program and the payoff can be huge, there are some conditions for participation:
  1. If you are selected as part of this inaugural cohort, you will have to commit to participating in all training and networking sessions between March and May 2019. Please see the tentative schedule here.  In order to remain eligible for awards, participants should not miss more than 2 sessions (1 classroom and 1 networking event).  Should a vacancy be created, another participant may be selected to fill that position.
  2. Challengers must successfully complete one of two training programs to be eligible for awards:
  3. If you wish to compete, but not participate in the business training, you must show proof of having completed a qualified business training program in the last two years resulting in a business plan for the company you want to enter into this competition. Online business plan templates will not be accepted.
  4. Units of governments are not eligible to participate.


Cultivating the resources necessary for an innovative and entrepreneurial community.

Funders and Sponsors

Coordinating Partners





February 12, 2019 @ 12:00 am
May 10, 2019 @ 11:59 pm
Event Category:


Technical College of the Rockies (Enterprise Room)
1765 US-50
Delta, CO 81416 United States


Shawn Gardner
(970) 712-0950
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