Pagosa Innovation Center invites public to meetup


By Royce Gomez-King

Special to The SUN

Pagosa Innovation Center (PIC), a nonprofit founded by Michael Whiting, Gary Hedgecock and Royce King, will be hosting an event on Jan. 14. The community at large is invited to the PIC meetup at Riff Raff on the Rio from 5 to 7 p.m.

Their goal is to transform a downtown building into a place that sparks pride and vitality, and attracts entrepreneurs, visionaries, dreamers and economic developers to create, collaborate, learn, teach and thrive. It will be a home to meet, work, learn and collaborate, in order to better grow and complete our incomplete business and economic development ecosystem. It will be a kind of factory and refinery for turning ideas and inspiration into local businesses and jobs.

The PIC has received support during the very early stages of its birth. Region 9 Economic Development District of SW Colorado, the Pagosa Springs Community Development Corporation, the Pagosa Springs Area Chamber of Commerce, the governor’s office, Startup Colorado, Unchartered, Proximity Space and several others are excited to watch a center open that will fully develop our business ecosystem, scaling businesses, sparking innovation and creating jobs.

The board members of PIC invite the community to be a part of the excitement as a startup ecosystem is created. The goal of this first meetup is to educate the community on what is happening and invite anyone who wants to be a part of it, and provide input into the missing pieces of the business ecosystem in Pagosa Springs and the surrounding area.

Meetups, business events, open office hours, a business accelerator and more have been discussed by the board as possible future events offered to the community. Jan. 14 will be a night of informal conversation around what is needed. A guest speaker will be casting the vision during a brief presentation. You are invited to come participate, discuss and catch the vision for what is being birthed in Pagosa Springs.

The PIC was chosen by the governor’s Office of Economic Development and International Trade (OEDIT) to receive OEDIT’s Coworking 101 technical assistance grant. At the meetup, more details will be shared as this can become the cornerstone for the local business community.