TCC, Lobeck Foundation Name StartUp Winner

GOOD START: Spring Noodles won the $2,500 prize during the Tulsa StartUp Series Food/Retail round. This is a photo of Cecilia Wessinger, owner of Spring Noodles, signing the $2,500 check.

The Tulsa StartUp Series named Spring Noodles the winner of the Food/Retail Live Pitch Series held July 20 at 36 Degrees North. Spring Noodles is a healthy alternative for quick service restaurants with an Asian style noodle bar.

Cecilia Wessinger of Spring Noodles received a $2,500 cash prize to advance her restaurant concept, a three-month membership to 36 Degrees North, a spot in the Venture Assessment Program at i2E and a mentor who will be available to meet weekly for at least three months. Spring Noodles was one of six finalists in the Food/Retail Pitch Series to advance to the live pitch round. Other finalists were Foodie Foot Tours, Jared’s ProPops, M&R Craft Salsa Company, Paleo D’Lites, and The Pop House.

“The Food/Retail series marks the fourth of five monthly pitch competitions, and we continue to see the support for startups expanding in Tulsa and are glad to be part of that community,” Autumn Worten, Tulsa Startup Series chair says. “We had six strong competitors, sharing their passion and love of Tulsa through their business ideas.”

The Tulsa StartUp Series, powered by Tulsa Community College and the Lobeck Taylor Family Foundation, focuses on delivering resources and mentoring opportunities to entrepreneurs.

“Companies like Spring Noodles are exactly why the Lobeck Taylor Family Foundation felt so strongly about funding programs like Kitchen 66 and Tulsa StartUp Series,” Elizabeth Frame Ellison, Lobeck Taylor Family Foundation board member, says. “These food entrepreneurs have very creative, viable businesses. By doubling our efforts and funding multiple programs that support Tulsa’s entrepreneurs, we’re able to help these worthy startups take that passion to the next level through added exposure and capital.”

The next monthly pitch competition is Wild Card – open to anyone with any idea. Submissions opened Aug. 3 for the Tulsa StartUp Series Wild Card Pitch Series and submissions open for Demo Day on Sept. 22. The Tulsa StartUp Series features pitch competitions categorized by business segment and culminates with Demo Day during Global Entrepreneurship Week in November. The five Pitch Series winners get an automatic bid to compete at Demo Day, where the winner receives $15,000, a year-long membership to 36 Degrees North and a dedicated mentor.

and have supported entrepreneurial innovation, growth and creativity since 2007 when the competition began as the Tulsa Entrepreneurial Spirit Award by former Mayor Kathy Taylor. The competition later adapted to the StartUp Cup Powered by the Lobeck Taylor Family Foundation. This year, the competition reinvented itself to the Tulsa StartUp Series to meet the needs of local entrepreneurs. In total, Tulsa’s original startup competition has generated more than 2,300 full-time, part-time, and contract jobs and a total economic impact for Tulsa of more than $57.7 million.

You can learn more about the Tulsa StartUp Series at, including instructions for submitting video pitches and competition rules.

Updated 08-29-2016

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