Simply Savory takes home first #PitchIn prize

June 4, 2019

Foodpreneur Rachel Blanks, founder of Simply Savory by Rachel, a line of seasoning mixes, took home both the judges’ and the community prize at the first #PitchIn neighborhood pitch event Monday night at Wiley’s Comedy Club.

#PitchIn is a collaborative effort between The Entrepreneurs Center, Dayton Tech Guide and the Miami Valley Small Business Development Center to partner with neighborhood associations and community organizations to highlight and support entrepreneurs and entrepreneurially-minded individuals within their neighborhoods.

Monday’s event, the first evening social event of Techstars Startup Week Dayton 2019, was held in partnership with the Oregon District Business Association. It was sponsored by Canary Consulting and Gottschlich & Portune, LLP.

Three individuals pitched.

Rachel Blanks designs her line of small-batch seasoning blends, Simply Savory by Rachel, for the average at-home cook — someone who wants to put delicious, hot food on the table without worrying about lacking a culinary education. Right now, you can find her blends on the shelves of TheZe DealZ. She pitched to use the funds to purchase a wax-sealing machine that will keep her blends fresher longer, and to do some marketing work to improve her labels.

Rachel took home both prizes Monday night. Judges from The Entrepreneurs Center, Canary Consulting and the Miami Valley Small Business Development Center picked the winner of the $500 prize. Attendees donated $80 to the community pool, and voted for that winner.

“Winning tonight is not just about the funds, though they’re great. It’s about the confirmation, feedback, motivation to continue,” Rachel said. “I got contacts, information to grow my business. My tank was at a quarter, but now it’s overflowing, I’ve got fuel to keep going.”

Also pitching Monday were Kate Edmondson & Jes McMillan, cofounders of tend&flourish, a collective of beauty, art  & wellness businesses run by women that is located at 1906 Brown Street in Dayton. They pitched for signage for their building, which is hard to find.

Last but not least, Brett Duncan pitched Recovery Uprising, a business focused on reaching individuals struggling with mental health and substance abuse. Brett hopes to bring a film called Crazywise to Dayton. The documentary film follows the journey of two Americans diagnosed with mental health as they explore mental health offerings and gaps in services across the US and the world. Brett hopes to grow Recovery Uprising into a sustainable nonprofit.

The goal is for #PitchIn to be a monthly series that rotates through different Dayton-area neighborhoods and communities.

“It used to be that entrepreneurs had to come to us to get the help the needed,” The Entrepreneurs Center President Scott Koorndyk said. “But that leaves too many people with great ideas on the sidelines, not knowing about the services we offer. This way, we’re coming to the neighborhoods to see what they’ve got, and how we can partner and broaden the support for entrepreneurs, no matter where they are.”

Want your community to be the next to host #PitchIn? Contact Kim Frazier at [email protected].