Columbia’s new ballpark hosting small business conference

Columbia’s fourth-annual Small Business Week Conference will be held May 5 in the city’s newest venue built in part by locally-owned small firms. Spirit Communications Park, home of the Columbia Fireflies, will host the informational event open to the public to provide resources about entrepreneurship and business.

“We thought it would be a cool opportunity for people who have not had an opportunity to come out and see it and have a chance to meet people involved in Spirit Communications Park,” said Paul Featheringill, business loan officer with Columbia’s Office of Business Opportunities.

Small Business Week is a national movement started by the federal Small Business Administration to honor America’s entrepreneurs. The day-long conference will offer a plethora of workshops about taking a business from home to office, crowdfunding, human resources federal contracting and owning a franchise.

Featheringill said the conference will include a discussion with local business owners affected by last fall’s floods. They will share their experiences in recovering from the disaster.

Conference attendees also will receive business advice from keynote speakers Carolyn Sawyer, of marketing and advertising firm Tom Sawyer Company, and Gloria Larkin, president of federal contract consulting company

The conference is expected to attract 200 people who will have the opportunity to network with one another and leave with more information about how to manage their businesses, Featheringill said

“We’ve had a lot of growth over the last several years to a decade in the Vista, Five Points and Main Street,” he said. “There’s also development in other parts of the city, like North Main and Two Notch. We really are committed to developing the small business community in the city.”

The public is invited to attend the conference. Admission costs $50.

Registration information can be found at Columbia’s Office of Business Opportunities website.

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Categories: Business, Local News, Richland County