Earlier this summer, the popular weekly event series 1 Million Cups: Des Moines changed locations, moving from the Valley Junction neighborhood of West Des Moines to the theater at the Science Center of Iowa, a few blocks away from Gravitate—the entrepreneurial center of gravity in downtown Des Moines.
We're excited for this close proximity and it prompted us to think about our regular event series like the Tuesday at Noon educational sessions and the "Ask an Expert" Open Office Hours.
Today, we're excited to share that we're moving both Tuesday at Noon and the Open Office Hours to Wednesdays to align with 1 Million Cups.
Open Office Hours*
The Open Office Hours series will now feature one expert each week with a wider variety of subject expertise. In the past, we've traditionally had bankers, lawyers and venture capitalists on hand to answer questions just once per month during First Friday Open Coworking. We'll still have bankers, lawyers and venture capitalists (Ryan Gerhardy of Next Level Ventures on August 5) but we're adding in experts like Monica Mendoza of Jolkona in Seattle who is here to meet with social entrepreneurs on August 12 and Scott Kubie, a designer and digital strategist who is ready to provide expert feedback on user experience on August 18.
Wednesday at Noon
Tuesday at Noon will be known as Wednesday at Noon (super creative) beginning September. On the second and fourth Wednesdays each month, we'll do a free-to-attend educational session on a topic of interest to the community. In the past year these sessions have ranged from things like Design Thinking & Strategy to Automated Testing to "You Will Get Sued Someday: What to Expect and What to Do About it Now" to Creating Great Videos on a Budget.
Gravitate All-Member Potluck
On the first Wednesday each month, we're hosting a potluck lunch at Gravitate. We call it the "All-Member" potluck to encourage our community members, punch card members and sponsors to join our coworking members but anyone and everyone is welcome. We've had students, first-time visitors and more join us in the past and its always fun (I bring Watergate Salad every time—its the perfect potluck dish).
Square One DSM's Startup Stories
Square One DSM hosts a monthly interview series with local entrepreneurs called "Startup Stories" just a block north of Gravitate in the Ruan II building. It's held the third Wednesday of the month. We're not holding any events that day so we can attend and hope that you do, too.
Wednesday is Startup Day
The idea of aligning all these events on one day is that they can build off each other, compliment each other and provide more value. It you're not a person who typically makes it downtown—maybe you live in the west suburbs or Ames or Indianola—you can maximize your trip and know that it will be worth the time investment.
Here's the general Startup Day schedule:
- 8-8:30 AM: 1 Million Cups coffee time and networking
- 8:30-9:30 AM: 1 Million Cups presentation and Q&A
- 10-noon: Ask an Expert Open Office Hours
- Noon-1 PM: Gravitate All-Member Potluck (1st Wednesday), Wednesday at Noon (2nd and 4th Wednesdays), Square One DSM's Startup Stories (3rd Wednesday)
*Hat tip to our friends at Vault and the Iowa Startup Accelerator for this idea.
Note: Gravitate isn't affiliated with 1 Million Cups: Des Moines or Square One DSM but we like what they're doing and thought it would be beneficial to align our programming to theirs. Oh yeah, and Startup Day isn't really a thing, we just like the sound of it.