Jump-Start 2012 competition winners

Michelle Enger |

Downtown Eau Claire, where one could be takin' one's business.
Downtown Eau Claire, where one should be takin' one's business.

The eighth annual Jump-Start Downtown Business Plan Competition winners were announced Thursday. "What's Jump-Start?" you ask? Jump-Start is a contest for entrepreneurs interested in opening a business in Downtown Eau Claire. Participants must open the proposed business within 12 months of the competition.

Past winners include Nicole’s Downtown Salon & Spa, Smiling Moose Deli, Just Local Food Cooperative, and Café 420.

The winners!
The winners!

Downtown Eau Claire, Inc. (DECI) announced the 2012 winners at an awards luncheon at the RCU Corporate Center in downtown Eau Claire.

First prize went to Jeremy Surguy with a business plan to open Tablet 23, a place where clients can brew beer at a retail shop rather than brewing from home. He received $5,000 for start-up costs and a $1500 media package from Charter Media and DECI.

Honorable Mention was awarded to Vanessa Moessner for The Lily Pad Lab, a playroom, classroom, and community for young children.