Entrepreneurs enter first round of challenge

Entrepreneurs from San Joaquin, Merced and Stanislaus counties have been selected from a field of more than 60 applicants to participate in the first public round of competition for $20,000 in cash and business services in the 2011 San Joaquin Entrepreneur Challenge, which will be held Wednesday, March 2.

The 21 quarter finalists are proposing a range of business ideas, including alternative energy, agribusiness, sports, consumer products and education, among others. Contestants for the $10,000 in cash and $10,000 in business services will have two minutes each to present their business ideas to a panel of judges and a voting audience in the first round of the business plan competition. Eight winners will be selected from these 21 quarter finalists to proceed to the second and possibly third rounds of competition to be held March 23.

The March 2 event will be held from 4 to 7 p.m. at the Stockton Golf & Country Club, 3800 W. Country Club Boulevard, Stockton. Members of the public are invited to attend for a cover charge of $12 prepaid or $15 at the door. Light refreshments will be served. For more information or to register to attend the event, go to www.sjchallenge.com.

-- Carol Reiter