Ever dream of starting your own business? Many people do, but may not have the idea completely fleshed out. Or, maybe they do, but aren't sure how to go about it.

Battle Creek's "Startup Fest", staged by the Generation E Institute, is only in its second year, but has registered almost double the number of participants over its first year. The event is an intense weekend of exposure to mentors who help budding entrepreneurs sort out their ideas and business plans, helping them to take the next steps to establish their business. Seventeen participants have been preparing to participate in the event later this month; nine participated in the inaugural event in 2015.

Mentors assist them, as well, with a "pitch competition" that tops the three-day event, in which entrepreneurs can - for the first time, in some cases - speak publicly and "pitch" their ideas to an audience. The audience could include members of the public.

The event, as of September 16, was continuing to sign on interested mentors with business backgrounds who would be willing to spend the weekend September 30 - October 3, 2016 volunteering their time to help coach participants.

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