Unite. Explore. Launch.
This Launch Weekend we’re breaking new ground for an event like no-other before in the Mid-Columbia region. Fuse, PNNL, WSU Tri-Cities, the Tri-Cities Research District and Port of Benton are forging together ideas, technology, business, teamwork and mentorship in a rapid-paced 52-hour competition to commercialize technology. TC Launch will provide the technologies, you bring the ideas and build the teams! No previous skills or experience necessary, you just gotta be crazy enough to join the fun. Top 3 teams will have a shot at bringing to market their ideas through professional and technical support, and cash incentives. Only question is...WHAT WILL YOU LAUNCH?
Friday: Unite - 5PM to 10PM
Friday night turns strangers into teams. Participants and organizers arrive, mingle, have dinner. Afterwards ideas are pitched! Anyone can pitch, but you only have 60 seconds and no slides. Voting guides team formation - and everyone gets to work finding their path forward until the venue closes.
Saturday: Explore - 8AM to 10PM
All day Saturday gives teams time to explore their idea and ask the experts. Teams define the Minimum Viable Product (MVP) for the weekend, find the market that's hungry for their idea, and capture their progress. They have access to mentors to help overcome roadblocks (legal, technical, etc), plus breakfast, lunch, dinner, and plenty of snacks.
Sunday: Launch - 8AM to 10PM
Sunday puts teams in front of the world. After finishing what they can all morning and afternoon, with breakfast and lunch provided, the final event is a the "Pitch Night". This singular event is open to the public to attend as the teams pitch to a panel of judges and receive on-the-spot feedback. Top 3 teams receive a prize package to help launch their idea.
The event starts at 5PM on Friday and ends 10PM on Sunday.
While the total end-to-end duration is 52 hours, you set your own schedule for the weekend!
FRIDAY 5PM: doors open
FRIDAY 6PM: dinner
FRIDAY 6:30PM - 10PM: ideas pitched, teams formed, tasks delegated
FRIDAY 10PM: doors close
SATURDAY 8AM: doors open, breakfast and coffee
SATURDAY 8:30AM: team check-ins, wants, needs, blockers
SATURDAY 9AM: first block of mentors arrive, available for any team
SATURDAY 1PM: lunch break, second block of mentors arrive
SATURDAY 6PM: dinner break, team check-ing
SATURDAY 10PM: doors close
SUNDAY 8AM: doors open, breakfast and coffee
SUNDAY 8:30AM: team check-ins
SUNDAY 1PM: lunch break (no mentors today!)
SUNDAY 5PM: Pitch Night attendees arrive
SUNDAY 5:30PM: dinner and drinks, keynote speaker, team prep for pitches
SUNDAY 6:30PM-8:30PM: teams pitch to panel of judges, live voting from the audience
SUNDAY 9PM: Top 3 teams announced, prizes awarded
SUNDAY 10PM: doors close
*All the time in-between is for researching, validating, and working on your team's idea.
We all believe in the vision of making Tri-Cities a world-class place for startups and small business, let's make it happen one idea, one team, one opportunity at a time.
Weekend Events Since 2013
Launch Weekend follows a local tradition of bringing people together to make new ideas into reality. Originally, this weekend event was presented using the international format known as "Startup Weekend" to promote rapid-prototyping of business ideas.
As time went on, we realized the needs of Tri-Cities were different. We wanted to include every idea - especially those Startup Weekend might label as "only small businesses" or "only social action" - into the mix, because entrepreneurship is for everyone. We want every idea - from business to art, and culture - mix in one place.