Thursday, December 21, 2023

Launch Pottsville 2.0 Invites Entrepreneurs to Ignite Arts and Events Scene


Attention entrepreneurs!  Get ready for an encore as Launch Pottsville returns with its second edition, Launch Pottsville 2.0! 

Following the success of the inaugural competition in 2022, which birthed three new Pottsville businesses – The Chopping Block, Rage Parade, and Arrow Studio & Events – the Pottsville Area Development Corporation (PADCO) and partners are gearing up for another round.

This time around, Launch Pottsville 2.0 is putting the spotlight on arts and events. They're calling on all entrepreneurs, creatives, and planners to step up and be a part of this exciting opportunity.

The goal of Launch Pottsville is clear: boost the arts and entertainment scene in Pottsville's Strategic Redevelopment Area. 

By investing in visionaries, artists, and planners, the initiative aims to bring more vibrancy and attraction to the local community. As part of the Strategic Plan initiated through the Continued Progress Project in 2018, proposals should focus on arts and entertainment ventures such as galleries, art incubators, performance spaces, businesses supporting art creation, sustainable annual events, and anything else that adds zest to the local arts and entertainment scene.

Savas Logothetides, Executive Director of PADCO said "PADCO is excited to work with entrepreneurial minded artists, creators, and event planners for Launch Pottsville 2.0. Improving our arts and entertainment ecosystem in downtown is a fundamental part of continued progress in the City of Pottsville”

Clarissa Christ, owner of Rage Parade and a previous Launch Pottsville winner, shared her thoughts on the impact of the competition: "[Launch Pottsville] shed light on the importance of supporting small businesses. It inspired the community to start dreaming and working towards a better future for Pottsville! I was able to learn firsthand from other small business owners, and Launch Pottsville provided educational opportunities to help me along the way!"

Alex Chivinski, Co-Owner of The Chopping Block, added, "Launch Pottsville brought a non-traditional form of economic development to the City of Pottsville that resulted in job creation, diversity of services, increased property values and innovation."

The organizers believe in the transformative power of the arts and entertainment for community revitalization. In the inaugural competition, Launch Pottsville leveraged $1.4 million in downtown investment, employed over 50 people, and potentially saved two blighted buildings.

David Young, incoming President of PADCO and Executive Director of Schuylkill Community Action, expressed excitement about Launch Pottsville 2.0, stating, "We're thrilled to announce Launch Pottsville 2.0, building upon the tremendous success of our inaugural competition that catalyzed the emergence of vibrant businesses."

The judging criteria for proposals include their impact on foot traffic and interest in the arts and entertainment scene in the Strategic Redevelopment Area, the perceived need for the proposal, and the ability of the entrepreneur, creative, or planner to sustain the proposal financially for a minimum of five years.

Launch Pottsville 2.0 will be a three-phase, six-month business plan contest with a guaranteed $50,000 prize pool, plus pro bono and services for the winners. Applications will be accepted from December 15, 2023, to March 1, 2024, with no entry fee. 

Got a great idea for a business?  For more details, official rules, competition format, and registration form, visit