CAMP Coworking closing after two-year run
Camp Coworking provided an 1,800 square-foot space for short and long-term tenants.
"Knowing when to stop is as important as knowing when to start," Megan Hunt said in a blog post published today. "And it's the right time for me to bow out."
Hunt, the 26-year-old entrepreneur behind the bridal design studio Princess Lasertron, said that CAMP was "never a moneymaker" and that she's no longer able to afford it. Her business ambitions have also changed.
"After CAMP, I will mainly focus on building Hello Holiday, a social shopping site launching in July that I co-founded with Sarah Lorsung Tvrdik," Hunt said.
Celebrated as Omaha's first coworking space, CAMP was home to 13 businesses over its tenure, including early tenants DownsDesign and Image Made – the two later merged to form Grain & Mortar – and current tenants Fully Croisened, Omaha Fashion Week and AJ Good. Tenants ranged from makers of hand-sewn dresses, such as Hunt's company, to developers of mobile apps, such as Fully Croisened.
CAMP was also home to a variety of events. "Book tours, Startup Weekends, workshop classes, launch parties, speakers, poetry slams, and more happened within the walls of CAMP," Hunt said, adding that she's proud of facilitating a space where connections were made and ideas were created.
Megan Hunt (middle) visits CAMP in March 2010 during its construction with first tenant Eric Downs of DownsDesign (left) and her husband, David Homan (right).
"Coworking isn't about space," Hunt said, "it's a philosophy and movement that empowers people to make their work better through collaboration, creativity, and openness."
Over the past two years, Hunt embodied this ethos. Whether it was opening her doors up to Silicon Prairie News events – in February she hosted companies during our Startup Job Crawl – or other startup events, such as Startup Weekends, she consistently put her space to use for the greater good of the city's entrepreneurial ecosystem.
CAMP's final day is today. By Tuesday it will be completely moved out of The Mastercraft. Hunt said the current tenants were aware of the closure and each of their leases has expired.
Over its 22-month lifespan, CAMP played host to coworking (above, right) and events (below, left).
Post from Megan Hunt (orginally published on campcoworking.com)
Closing our doors at CAMP Coworking
When I started CAMP Coworking in June 2010, I wanted to build something with the support of my friends and community that would serve the rich culture of starters here in Omaha. For two solid years we supported the endeavors of over a dozen businesses that called CAMP home, and worked to offer opportunities for learning and inspiration to our community. Book tours, startup weekends, workshop classes, launch parties, speakers, poetry slams, and more happened within the walls of CAMP and I'm proud of facilitating a space where so many connections and ideas were created.
Today I am closing the doors at CAMP for good. A combination of reasons has contributed to my decision, mainly the financial burden of maintaining CAMP and new opportunities I am pursuing with my other companies.
After CAMP, I will mainly focus on building Hello Holiday, a social shopping site launching in July that I co-founded with Sarah Lorsung Tvrdik. Our goal with Hello Holiday is to introduce a charming and exuberant approach to style and the online shopping experience, and we are working to build our inventory right now--finding the right clothes to make every woman feel ready to take on the world. Our mission is to bring emerging designers into the mainstream fashion market and offer a carefully curated selection of apparel and accessories to modern women. The new Hello Holiday office will open in Benson soon.
Princess Lasertron, my bridal bouquet and project design company, will operate out of my house--like I did from the beginning--where I will be finishing my first book set for release in Spring 2014. By working at home, I'm looking forward to spending more time with my two-year-old daughter. We moved into CAMP nearly a week after she was born and she has been along for the entire ride.
CAMP was never a moneymaker – that's the truth – and unfortunately I can no longer afford to sustain it. It's hard to admit that things didn't go as I wanted. Knowing when to stop is as important as knowing when to start, and it's the right time for me to bow out.
This was a very difficult decision that I've been mulling over for months. I feel so lucky and honored to live in this community on the Silicon Prairie. We have an ecosystem here that is so supportive of entrepreneurship and creative culture, and coworking is a small piece of that puzzle. Although CAMP is closing, there are other spaces and venues that will fill that need and I encourage you to participate in building communities there. Coworking isn't about space--it's a philosophy and movement that empowers people to make their work better through collaboration, creativity, and openness. Coworking is about serving a need that people have, and that example is something that I'm glad CAMP brought to Omaha, and I'll be glad to see it continue to spread. Thank you to everyone who has been a supporter, client, and friend of CAMP over the years. I'm excited for what's to come.
Credits: Photo of Hunt is courtesy of Hunt. Photos of CAMP Coworking by Danny Schreiber (top), Brittany Mascio and CAMP Coworking.