I blogged about The Spur, the Northfield Enterprise Center‘s new coworking and incubator/accelerator facility, last July when it opened. I’ve been a regular there ever since. If you’ve not been by yet, considering joining us on Wednesday for our first jelly (PDF flyer).
What’s a coworking jelly?
JELLY: a casual coworking event, where freelancers, home workers and people running small businesses meet up in order to get out of their normal space, meet some new people and work together in a social environment.
The latest addition to the facilities at The Spur is what we’re calling a ‘chat booth.’ It’s a small space where you can take/make phone calls without bothering others. And if you need to use your laptop to make calls or otherwise use it for audio, the booth has a flip-down table, too. I find the chat booth to be very handy, especially when some of Northfield’s movers and shakers stop by (right photo above) and
keep bothering me and socialize a bit.
I was at a meeting of downtown office workers last week, hosted by the NDDC, when the discussion veered towards downtown amenities. NEC head honcho Megan Tsui brought up the issue of the lack of tables on Bridge Square that would be conducive for both meetings as well as eating. She said someone from the City once told her that they couldn’t put picnic tables on Bridge Square because pranksters would toss them in the Cannon River.
This little tidbit made its way back to Northfield City Hall and a few days later, NDDC ED Ross Currier told me that two picnic tables magically appeared on Bridge Square, evidently via
divine intervention an executive order from City Engineer/Public Works Director Joe Stapf.
Cool. And it makes me hopeful we’ll soon see even better table/bench amenities there that are conducive to meetings, games, socializing, and eating.
(With apologies to the author of the Book of Genesis for my blog post title.)
I spent a few hours last week at The Spur, the Northfield Enterprise Center‘s new coworking and incubator/accelerator facility at 313 1/2 Division St, (2nd floor above Division St. Dance). NEC Executive Director Megan Tsui had her interns hard at work getting the place ship-shape (right photo above: Amelia Schmelzer, Shafi Shahriar, CJ James, Megan Tsui, Connor Petersen).
I’ll be officing here starting this week, mostly in the mornings t 8:30-noonish (yes, I’ll maintain my corner office at GBM 6-8:30am). The main room has plenty of work spaces, plus a fridge, microwave, coffee pot, water cooler, lockers, and a copy machine/network printer. Not visible: fast wi-fi.
The back (east) room has three areas: a lounge, a big meeting space in the middle (tables, chairs, digital projector), and a smaller conference table in the back. The outdoor deck area (right photo) will have tables and chairs.
The Spur currently has three membership levels, similar to CoCo MSP’s individual membership plans but without the signup fees.
Want to win a Kindle Fire, donated by Community Resource Bank?
See the web version of Megan’s email for details on the July 26 4-7 pm open house.
The Northfield Enterprise Center is hosting a Coworking Incubator/Accelerator Community Brainstorming Session on Tuesday, Jan. 31, 2-4 pm in the Archer House lower level conference room.
In related news, according to Megan Tsui, NEC’s executive director, "the EDA approved the NEC’s request for $20,000 in matching funds for a grant from SMIF (also $20,000)" for the "design and development of an Incubator/Accelerator (I/A) space in Northfield. The NEC will use a Co-working model with a membership structure to help make the project sustainable for the long-term." See pages 7-14 of last week’s EDA mtg packet.
And last Friday, "Councilwoman Rhonda Pownell and several NEC Board members took a tour of CoCo Minneapolis," according to this post on the NEC Facebook Wall.
If you’re new to coworking, see all the blog posts about it here.
Yesterday afternoon, Megan Allen Tsui, Executive Director of the Northfield Enterprise Center (NEC), convened a meeting of possible stakeholders and other people interested in creating a coworking/incubator/accelerator space in Northfield (background blog post here). We met in a conference room at the Neuger Communications Group.
Other attendees: Ross Currier (NDDC), Tami Enfield, Rick Estenson (First National Bank Northfield, NEC, Chamber), Kathy Feldbrugge (Northfield Area Chamber of Commerce), Jody Gunderson (City of Northfield), Beth Kallestad (CRWP), Julie Kildahl, Dave Neuger (Neuger Communications Group, Chamber), Rhonda Pownell (Northfield City Council), Donna Rae Scheffert, Mary Schmelzer (Northfield Enterprise Center), Justin Volling (St. Olaf student), and Erica Zweifel (Northfield City Council).
Tentative next steps include a community awareness meeting in January, as well as a couple of coworking jellies.
After the meeting, I attended an event at CoCo MSP’s new space in the Grain Exchange Building in downtown Minneapolis.
Here are some photos of what it now looks like, with its:
large event space;
and dedicated desk and ‘campsite’ spaces.