Starting your own company doesn’t have to mean working alone.
A St. Paul co-working center recently kicked off a new Startup Saturdays theme. The 3rd Place, 2190 Como Ave., is one of two co-working centers that opened in the city earlier this year. The other is CoCo in Lowertown St. Paul.
Co-working centers are meant to be an alternative to the kitchen table or coffee shop for self-employed and telecommuting professionals, who typically pay a membership fee for access to a workstation, Internet connection and other office amenities.
The 3rd Place, a project of the social-media marketing firm Monkey Island, centers on the hope that a handful of aspiring tech startups will decide to take their projects out of the garage or basement and into its co-working space one day a week.
The sessions are free during the month of May. Amenities include high-speed wi-fi, whiteboards, and a conference room with a projector, but co-founder Zack Steven said the real reason to participate is the chance to be around other startup-minded people.
The real benefit is getting to “talk to people who have done it, and are doing it, and dedicate time to it so you can actually find out if what you’re working on is worth while from a market/business standpoint,” Steven said.
So far, Startup Saturdays have no formal program or curriculum — participants just show up between 9 and 5 — but Steven said they’re talking with local tech groups about possibly developing sessions specifically aimed at entrepreneurs.
Originally published May 26, 2010, by The Line Media.