To the business ideas pitched by young county entrepreneurs as part of the first-ever Start-Up Cecil showcase Monday night. More than 20 teens, ranging in age from 11 to 17, gave a “Shark Tank” style presentation of their business plans before a panel of judges at the Elkton Central Library for a chance to win prizes and other business-related items. The showcase, which was run by the Cecil County Public Library, was the culmination of a three-part series that kicked off in June with two classes designed to teach teens what it takes to create a small business. Joseph Grapes, 12, won first place for his Helping Hands plan, which focuses on helping elders with tasks such as lawn and yard work, car washes and indoor chores. Second place was awarded to Caroline Little, 11, for her Managing Vegetation with Goats plan, which utilizes goats for lawn work. Third place went to Brandon Goldberg, 11, for his Pet Parade Dog Services, a dog-walking service. All of the ideas were amazingly detailed for pre-teens, and we imagine that many of them will go on to become small business owners themselves later in life. Kudos to all involved with this program for getting kids to see a bigger picture at a young age.
To the sudden success of Pokemon Go, the rebirth of the 1990s phenomenon. It surely hasn’t come without its pitfalls — users walking into traffic, becoming victims of robberies via the games GPS functions or potential security flaws built into its user terms — but at the heart of the game is potentially revolutionary idea. Perhaps most exciting is that it forces video game players to exercise. How many times have we complained that Billy or Susie are stuck sitting in front of a TV playing games? Now they’re forced to walk in order to complete objectives. Furthermore, the game is uniting people of all different backgrounds and demographics to play and many stories have surfaced online of players meeting new people and gaining new friends. Forward-thinking businesses have also used the games functions to welcome in new customers while other public institutions or monuments are gaining newfound interest. Maybe the players will never think about them again outside of the game, but we’re willing to bet that the visits inspire some interest in some at the very least. For now, play responsibly and accompany your children for some quality time with the game.