Williston joins One Million Cups to help foster new business growth

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WILLISTON, N.D. - Entrepreneurship is the engine that keeps the country going. Williston has joined a national organization to help foster the growth of new businesses.

It can be hard to take an idea and turn it into a fully-fledged business.

"We saw that there were a lot of entrepreneurial ideas that were floating around town, but a lot of those ideas weren't making it through the front doors of our office to where I could work with them or the small business development center could work with them to help that idea become a reality." said Shawn Wenko, Williston economic development director.

So when then-candidate Doug Burgum brought up the One Million Cups organization during a visit last year, it was something that the city wanted in on.

"We're a small community, and we're an increasingly younger community. So there's a lot of business ideas out there," said Wenko.

One Million Cups seeks to help by providing a social forum where people can bounce ideas off each other.

"People can pitch new ideas and get some feedback from the community, and others on some of the mistakes they've made in their own business and different ideas and different options," said Bob Horab, McCody Concrete.

Each session, a relatively new company gets the opportunity to present its business.

"You know, I hope they get a little inspired to try to do some stuff," said Tavish Vestal, Arista Containers.

More than 100 communities across the nation have One Million Cups chapters, and now Williston is taking part.

The Williston Chapter of One Million Cups meets the first Wednesday of the month at 8:30 a.m. at Williston State College. They can be found on Twitter by searching One Million Cups WST.