PASCO EDC DISTRIBUTES MORE THAN $1 MILLION: The Pasco Economic Development Council’s Micro-loan Program has proven highly successful in the first five years it has been offered. There have been 38 micro-loans awarded, which resulted in the creation or retention of 270 jobs in Pasco County. Over the past five years, Pasco EDC has raised $724,000 from private donations and the business community to support the fund. In April 2016, Pasco County Commissioners contributed $400,000 from the Penny for Pasco Jobs and Economic Opportunities Trust Fund. The contributions help ensure funds are available to support local small-business owners who have demonstrated they have the experience, resources and valid business plan needed for success, but are unable to secure traditional financing. Micro-loans are available in amounts up to $35,000. For information, visit pascoedc.com.
COMMON GROUNDS PITCH SERIES: Pasco Economic Development Council will offer a Common Grounds Pitch presentation series one Wednesday each month from 8:30 to 11 a.m. at SMARTstart Dade City Entrepreneur Center, 37837 Meridian Ave., Suite 309, Dade City. The next event is Jan. 10. Coffee and networking start at 8:30 a.m., pitch presentations begin at 9 a.m. Each month, two individuals will present a five-minute pitches and introduce their business ideas to the local entrepreneurial community. Each pitch will be followed by a question-and-answer/feedback opportunity. To register, visit smartstartpasco.com. For information, email Andrew Romaner at [email protected] Applications will be accepted on a rolling basis and will be considered each month.
OPEN HOUSE: Medical Center of Trinity will host an open house from 9 a.m. to noon Jan. 13 at its soon-to-open ER 24-7, 1430 Dale Mabry Highway, Lutz. The event will feature tours of the emergency rooms, an opportunity to speak with healthcare professionals, a Teddy bear clinic for kids and refreshments. For information, call (727) 834-4867.
CO.STARTERS: The Pasco Economic Development Council will sponsor the next session of Co.Starters, a national program that helps entrepreneurs turn an idea into a new business in nine weeks, beginning Jan. 16 and running through March 13. The program will be from 6 to 9 p.m. Tuesdays at SMARTstart Dade City Entrepreneur Center, 37837 Meridian Ave., Dade City. The cost is $295. The registration deadline is 5 p.m. Jan. 8. To register, visit smartstartpasco.com/costarters. Call Becky Martin at (813) 926-0827, ext. 221.
PIGZ IN Z’HILLS BBQ & BLUES: The Greater Zephyrhills Chamber of Commerce’s eighth annual Pigz in Z’Hills BBQ & Blues will be 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. Jan. 20 at 5200 Airport Road, Zephyrhills. The event includes a barbecue competition, live blues music, a kids fun zone, a business expo, a car show, an aviation display and show, a military history museum and a business expo. Admission is free, parking is $10. No coolers or pets allowed. Bring a lawn chair. Call (813) 782-1913 or visit zephyrhillschamber.org.
SMALL BUSINESS SEMINARS: Pasco Hernando SCORE is presenting a series of free small business seminars:
• Learn How to Start a New Business, 5:30 to 7:30 p.m. Jan. 8, Regency Park Branch Library, 9701 Little Road, New Port Richey.
• 360 Marketing in a 24/7-365 World, 5:30 to 7:30 p.m. Jan. 9, Hudson Regional Park Library, 8012 Library Road, Hudson.
• How to Apply for a Business Loan, 5:30 to 7:30 p.m. Jan. 9, SMARTstart West Pasco Entrepreneur Center, 4532 U.S. 19, New Port Richey.
• Introduction to QuickBooks, 5 to 6:45 p.m. Jan. 9, Spring Hill Branch/Harold G. Zopp Memorial Library, 9220 Spring Hill Drive, Spring Hill.
• Commercial Insurance for Small Business, 5:30 to 7:30 p.m. Jan. 10, South Holiday Library, 4649 Mile Stretch Road, Holiday.
• How to Use Internet Marketing in Your Business, 5:30 to 7:30 p.m. Jan. 10, Hugh Embry Library, 14215 Fourth St., Dade City.
• Creating a Successful Business Plan, 5:30 to 7:30 p.m. Jan. 23, SMARTstart West Pasco Entrepreneur Center, 4532 U.S. 19, New Port Richey.
• How to Use Internet Marketing in Your Business, 5:30 to 7:30 p.m. Jan. 23, Land O’Lakes Branch Library, 2818 Collier Parkway, Land O’Lakes.
Visit pascohernando.score.org, and click on the local workshops tab or call the SCORE office at (727) 842-4638.
If you have business announcements you would like to share, mail the details to Jean Hamilton, Business Digest, Pasco Times, 11321 U.S. 19, Port Richey, FL 34668.
You may also email items to [email protected] or fax them to (352) 754-6133. Submitted items may be edited for length and clarity. Photos are published as space permits; they will not be returned. Call (352) 848-1438.
Networking and mixers
•?Trinity Positive Business Network: 8:30 a.m. Mondays at Oasis Coffee Spot, 9213 Little Road, New Port Richey. Call Tony Nalli at (727) 858-7907.
•?Women’s Connection of New Port Richey: 11:30 a.m. the second Monday of each month (September through May) at Spartan Manor, 6121 Massachusetts Ave., New Port Richey. Cost is $15 and includes lunch and a speaker. To RSVP, call Linda at (727) 856-4042 or Anita at (727) 863-2126.
•?BNI Outlook to Success: 7:30 a.m. Tuesdays at Verizon Event Center, 8718 Trouble Creek Road, New Port Richey. Cost is $10 and includes breakfast. Call (727) 815-7744.
•?Suncoast Women in Networking: 11:30 a.m. to 1 p.m. the third Tuesday of each month at Beef’O’Brady’s, 5546 Main St., New Port Richey. Suncoast WIN is a group of professional businesswomen. Membership is $10 per year. Call Myrtle at (727) 934-9993.
•?Rotary Club of Lutz: 11:45 a.m. to 1 p.m. Tuesdays at Heritage Harbor Golf and Country Club, 19502 Heritage Harbor Parkway, Lutz. Cost is $12, includes lunch and speaker. Call (813) 857-7089 or visit lutzrotary.org.
•?West Pasco Business Association Monday Chapter: 11:45 a.m. Mondays, Brass Tap - Trinity, 10700 State Road 54, Trinity. The group is made up of professionals who promote each other’s businesses. Visit wpba.biz.
•?West Pasco Business Association Tuesday Chapter: 5:15 p.m. Tuesdays at the WPBA office, 2150 Seven Springs Blvd., Trinity. The group is made up of professionals who promote each other’s businesses. Visit wpba.biz.
•?West Pasco Business Association Friday Chapter: 8:15 a.m. Fridays at the Oasis Coffee Spot, 9213 Little Road, New Port Richey. The group is made up of professionals who promote each other’s businesses. Visit wpba.biz.
•?Trinity Business Association: 6 to 7:30 p.m. the first and third Tuesdays of each month at Fox Hollow Country Club, 10050 Robert Trent Jones Parkway. Networking begins at 5:30 p.m., meeting starts at 6 p.m. Guests welcome. Cost is $12. Call Ginny Pierce at (727) 433-4073.
•?BNI Platinum: 7:15 a.m. Wednesdays at Heritage Harbor Golf & Country Club, 19502 Heritage Harbor Parkway, Lutz. Call Bob Nixon at (813) 263-5632.
•?Pasco Business Connections: 7:30 a.m. Wednesdays at the Broken Yolk, 3350 Grand Blvd., Holiday. Email [email protected]
•?Wednesday Morning Networking Group: 7:30 a.m. the first and third Wednesdays of each month at Hungry Harry’s Family Bar-B-Que, 3116 Land O’Lakes Blvd. A short networking presentation will be followed by a chance for all attendees to do a 30-second commercial. The event sponsor is Proly, Laporte & Mulligan P.A. Cost is $7 and includes breakfast. Call the Central Pasco Chamber of Commerce at (813) 909-2722.
•?Keep It Local-Trinity Chapter: 8 a.m. Wednesdays at Havana Dreamers Cafe, 3104 Town Ave., Trinity. (813) 405-7815.
•?Pasco Aging Network: 8 to 10 a.m. the second Wednesday of each month. Location changes each month. For information or to RSVP, visit pascoagingnetwork.org. PAN is a coalition of agencies and private providers of elder services in Pasco.
•?Keep It Local-Wesley Chapel Chapter: 8:30 a.m. Wednesdays at Lexington Oaks Golf & Country Club, 26133 Lexington Oaks Blvd., Wesley Chapel. (813) 405-7815.
•?Keep It Local-Christian Women’s Network Chapter: 9:30 a.m. Wednesdays at the Direction Connection, 2632 U.S. 19, Holiday. (813) 405-7815.
•?Free Networking International: 11:30 a.m. to 1 p.m. Wednesdays at Cantina Laredo, 2000 Piazza Ave., Building 4, Suite 170, Wesley Chapel (at the Shops at Wiregrass). Attendees pay for their own lunch. Call Martine Duncan at (813) 929-6816.
•?Keep It Local-New Port Richey Chapter: 11:30 a.m. Wednesdays at the Direction Connection, 2632 U.S. 19, Holiday. (813) 405-7815.
•?Keep It Local-Odessa/Trinity Chapter: 11:30 a.m. Wednesdays at Seven Springs Golf & Country Club, 3535 Trophy Blvd., Trinity. (813) 405-7815.
•?West Pasco Business Network: noon to 1 p.m. Wednesdays at Denny’s, 12105 U.S. 19, Hudson. Call Pete Petrignani at (727) 967-3106.
•?BNI Eagles: 7:15 a.m. Thursdays at Spartan Manor, 6121 Massachusetts Ave., New Port Richey. Cost is $10 and includes breakfast. Call Clay Henderson at (727) 534-5191.
•?BNI Referral Connection: 7:15 to 9 a.m. Thursdays at Vallarta’s Mexican Restaurant, 22948 State Road 54, Lutz. Call Rob Hamilton at (813) 431-5887.
•?Christian Business Connections of Central Pasco: 7:45 to 9:15 a.m. Thursdays at Quail Hollow Golf Club, 6225 Old Pasco Road, Wesley Chapel. Cost of $9 per meeting, includes breakfast and beverages. Annual membership dues are $100. Call Rene Van Hout at (813) 300-7511.
•?Trinity/West Pasco Chapter of NPI: 7:45 a.m. Thursdays at The Grand Plaza Café, 4040 Little Road, New Port Richey. Call Rob Marlowe at (727) 847-2424.
•?Networking For Your Success: 8 a.m. Thursdays at Lexington Oaks Country Club, 2615 Lexington Oaks Blvd., Wesley Chapel. Cost is $5 and includes a continental breakfast. Annual membership is $79. Call Matt at (813) 782-1777.
•?Women-n-Charge: 11:30 a.m. on the first Friday of each month, Pebble Creek Country Club, 10550 Regents Park Dr., Tampa. Cost is $15 for members in advance, $18 for guests and at the door. Call Judy at (813) 600-9848.