Past event…

Event Ended

Ever wondered what it takes to be an entrepreneur?

The professional and personal challenges, the high and lows, the failures and the success?

Startup Weekend is a global grassroots movement of active and empowered entrepreneurs who are learning the basics of founding startups and launching successful ventures. It is the largest community of passionate entrepreneurs with over 1800 past events in 120 countries around the world in 2014.

The non-profit organization is headquartered in Seattle, Washington but Startup Weekend organizers and facilitators can be found in over 200 cities around the world. From Mongolia to South Africa to London to Brazil, people around the globe are coming together for weekend long workshops to pitch ideas, form teams, and start companies.

All Startup Weekend events follow the same basic model: anyone is welcome to pitch their startup idea and receive feedback from their peers. Teams organically form around the top ideas (as determined by popular vote) and then it’s a 54 hour frenzy of business model creation, coding, designing, and market validation. The weekends culminate with presentations in front of local entrepreneurial leaders with another opportunity for critical feedback.

Whether entrepreneurs found companies, find a cofounder, meet someone new, or learn a skill far outside their usual 9-to-5, everyone is guaranteed to leave the event better prepared to navigate the chaotic but fun world of startups. If you want to put yourself in the shoes of an entrepreneur, register now for the best weekend of your life!

Whats in it for me?

  • Meet other startup enthusiasts such as designers, developers, marketing gurus & product developers
  • Build a startup or product in less than 54 hours
  • 6-7 meals and drinks (did somebody say beer?) provided
  • Prizes, swag, give-aways, oh my!
  • Fun, fun, fun! Just ask any of the attendees from last year’s event!

But I’m not a programmer, am I still welcome?

Startup Weekend isn’t just for developers! Teams, just like businesses need a diverse skill-set to succeed. On average, half of Startup Weekend participants have technical backgrounds, while the other possess a business mindset. Whether you’re primarily software developers, graphics designers or business people such as marketers – if you have great ideas you’re dying to share with the world, love learning and meeting new people, it’s not too late to sign up for Startup Weekend Okanagan and gain a real hands-on startup experience unlike any other.



Mar 14
  • Registration Starts
  • Dinner & Networking
  • Welcome & Speakers
  • Pitches Start
  • Attendees vote for the top ideas
  • Teams start forming and discussing ideas
  • Start to formalize teams and take an inventory of skills. Be honest, and direct about what resources and skills are needed for the weekend. You may stay and work as late as the venue will allow


Mar 15
  • Arrive, simple breakfast & coffee
  • Teams formed and setting up workspace for the weekend
  • Lunch
  • Call for needs & skills
  • Coaches help teams one-on-one. They are here to help!
  • Dinner
  • Mid weekend check-in, status reports, call for help
  • Finished for the day. You may stay and work as late as the venue will allow


Mar 16
  • Arrive, simple breakfast & coffee
  • Call for help (this is self motivated, so don’t be shy)
  • Lunch
  • Coaches arrive… ASK QUESTIONS
  • Gut check. Start prepping for presentations
  • Dinner
  • Judging & awards
  • Wrapup
  • Go home!
Platinum Sponsors
Gold Sponsors
Silver Sponsors

Cayley Humphries

Technical Lead, Fresh Grade   |   LinkedIn

Cayley Humphries is a veteran software developer and designer. He’s currently the Technical Director at FreshGrade, an amazing education startup located in Kelowna. He has spent the past 7 years at various startups in the Okanagan valley. You can reach Cayley on twitter at @cayleyh

Justin Jackson

Product Manager   |   LinkedIn

Justin has been building things with computers since he was 5. He built his first website in 1993, and sold his first product in the 10th grade. Nowadays, he's the Product Manager for a profitable web app, and the host of the Product People podcast (where he's interviewed guests like Jason Calacanis, DHH, and Amy Hoy). He's passionate about building products that delight customers. He blogs at and tweets at @mijustin

Angela Nagy


CEO of GreenStep, Sustainability Coordinator, Sustainability Business Consultant, Gardener, Musician, Nature Lover

Barbara Marcolin

Assistant Professor of Information Systems   |   LinkedIn

Dr Marcolin is an Assistant Professor at Faculty of Management at the University of British Columbia, Okanagan campus, teaching Entrepreneurial Technology, researching Effective Technology Use and starting businesses. She supports and encourages student in their startup ideas using individual use, business technology value, user competence, web interactivity and fast features.

John van der Woude

Founder and Creative Director at John van der Woude Designs   |   LinkedIn

John van der Woude is a visual designer that has been designing logos and developing brand identities for over 8 years. He’s worked across a wide variety of industries for all sizes of businesses to help them develop a more cohesive visual brand that aligns with the business’ values and audience. He’s been running his own visual design company for the past 10 years, working as well in web- and print-design, producing thousands of projects for dozens of clients. Since moving to Kelowna in 2010, he’s immersed himself into the StartUp community here, working out of Co+Lab in the Kelowna Innovation Centre.


Deb Leroux

Uniting Project and Capital   |   LinkedIn

12 years business/government relations/volunteer experience, uniting projects & capital.

Clint Schnee


Currently working as a freelance UI/UX consultant, he is best-known for his design leadership of Disney's Club Penguin where he built a world-class design group across four studios and three continents.

Other achievements include the art direction of multi-language marketing campaigns, leading UI best practices for an online game with a population 4x larger than Canada’s, and taking his four boys on a return trip to get groceries.

Ryan Gallagher

Founder and CEO at Upward Solutions Inc.   |   LinkedIn

Over 15 years experience in technology leadership and am now on my 3rd tech startup. I've worn many hats in my career and have experience in team leadership, development and architecture, management, sales and marketing and customer relationships. I tend to focus more on technology innovation and finding creative solutions to problems. I love presenting my ideas and collaborating with other creative people to uncover opportunities and solutions.

Marina Garrison

Director, Product Development & Delivery at Two Hat Security   |   LinkedIn

"Marina Garrison is a Product Management & Delivery specialist with over 16 years industry experience, holder of PMI’s project management professional designation (PMP) and an MBA from Athabasca University.

With a background in product management (software engineering), she has worked as Project Manager at companies including technology startups, publicly traded companies, a crown corporation and one of the world’s largest management consultancies.

Marina is an active participant in the Project Management community and has taught project management at the Centre of Arts and Technology Okanagan, BC and developed the curriculum for a Certificate Program in Project Management at the Okanagan College, BC. She also co-founded the BC Society of Project Management Professionals, a local project management networking group for mentoring and educating new project managers and is currently one of the mentors for the Co+Hatch new graduate incubator program.

Experienced in traditional (waterfall) project management and agile/scrum/kanban, Marina manages projects of all sizes using the most effective methods to achieve strategic organizational goals.
Posted on Feb 27"

Richard Taylor

Founder & Managing Partner at Hiilite   |   LinkedIn

Blends strategy, creativity and technology in to practical solutions. Equally at home in the board room and the design studio. Likes to get his hands dirty. And then wash them before greeting clients.

- Agency positions with McCann Erickson, Gyro & 64K
- Head of eMarketing, Europe, Middle-East & Africa for Cadence Design Systems
- 10 years running own consulting firms & agencies
- Trained Graphic Designer & self-taught Hacker

Daryl Chymko
Brent Lachman
Cynthia Gunsinger
Mica Knibbs
Shane Austin
Chad Kohalyk
Shane Lawrence
Kazia Mullin

Weekend Wrap Up

by Kazia Mullin

First Of All, Thank You! What a weekend! Without a doubt, the first Okanagan Startup Weekend was a huge success! […]

Upcoming Events

© Copyright 2015, Startup Weekend. All rights reserved. Privacy Policy