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We are so pleased to announce the winners of our 2013 youth business competition, the Celebration for Young Entrepreneurs! For the first time this year we hosted an “Affiliated Category,” which solicited applicants from larger groups, like high schools, scout troops, and non-profit entrepreneurial organizations. We also selected winners for each of our three age categories. Those three winners were paired up with a Presenting Mentor, a leading business person from the Colorado community. Here are the winners!
Affiliated Category – Peetz Perks
Peetz Perks was created as a school-run business to allow junior and senior high school students to explore owning and running a business. The students jumped in with enthusiasm and now sell lattes, frappes, steamers, cocoa, and blended smoothies to their peers and their teachers.
The new school year will allow the students to achieve some of their goals, which include reaching out to community members to sell drinks, offering more drink alternatives by purchasing additional equipment, and possibly expanding into a larger space. The students are supported by a full-time business teacher who acts as a mentor. The students learn first-hand the challenges and rewards of scheduling staff, ordering ingredients, trying new products, and balancing the books.
Peetz Perks is located in Peetz, Colorado, near the Nebraska border.
6-11 Age Category – Critters and Creations by Ingrid and Anders Martinson
Ingrid and Anders Martinson enjoy spending time in nature and interacting with animals. In 2010, the siblings decided to create a business out of this mutual love of the outdoors. Their polymer clay creatures were the result, and Critters and Creations was formed. They have sold their creations at several of the annual Young Entrepreneurs Marketplaces. In the next year, they hope to add more variety to their designs and start to sell their products online.
When not running the business with her brother, Ingrid, 11, enjoys reading, skiing, swimming, and spending time with her family. She also loves to travel and speaks Croatian fluently.
Anders, 9, keeps busy outside running the business as well. He plays the piano and enjoys swimming, hanging out with friends, skiing, and reading. Anders is also fluent in Croatian and loves to travel.
Purchase some “critters” at http://crittersandcreations.com/
12-15 Age Category – ZARL, Inc. by Andrew Hageman and Zac Stahlhut
Andrew Hageman and Zac Stahlhut, both 12 years old, have been friends since they were in second grade. In 2011, Andrew learned about a rocket launcher that a professor friend of his created at the University of Texas. After receiving some mentoring from the professor, Andrew and Zac created an intellectual property agreement that lets them use the design of the rockets in exchange for an annual fee and a royalty on each rocket sold.
Once Andrew and Zac got started, they immediately sold out their rockets at several craft fairs and markets. Andrew then developed their second product, a trident rocket. The boys diversified their business by offering birthday parties and rocket summer camps.
Andrew is a 7th grader and enjoys math and basketball. He also has a thriving babysitting business called “The Babysitting Builder Boy” and he admires Warren Buffett.
Zac is also a 7th grader who loves to longboard, has appeared in several commercials for Honda and Xcel Energy, and hopes to go to California Arts to study acting.
Shop for rockets at http://www.zarlinc.com/
16-21 Age Category – Fragile Glory Impressions by Mary Sorteberg
Mary Sorteberg, age 20, has been creating art since she was just four years old. She started her business at the age of 11 when she turned one of her original drawings into a greeting card to sell. Mary doesn’t believe in being a starving artist, so she continues to grow her artistic interests into a strong business.
Mary started off selling cards from her artwork, but she soon added prints, hand-painted iPhone cases, custom commissions, and teaching. She has now been teaching art to kids and adults for six years and enjoys every moment.
She is currently a part time student at Metro State University of Denver working towards an Art Major. Being only part-time at school gives Mary flexibility with her schedule to devote the rest of her time to her art business. She has recently achieved one of her big goals to have her own studio! She just moved into the new space where she can display her art, teach her classes, and continue to explore her horizons.
Check out her business at http://myartcardcompany.blogspot.com/