#TwitterDrive: Dispatches from Kansas City, St. Louis and Nashville

By Bear Douglas
Tuesday, 10 February 2015

After two great events in Colorado, we drove 600 miles east toward Kansas City, just in time to hit an incoming snowstorm. New teammates joined the bus, and others departed on different adventures like speaking at dotSwift in Paris.

Kansas City

When we first arrived in town, we sent out a message inviting developers to meet us for coffee at a local coffee shop. We caught up with a few community leaders doing amazing things with tech in Kansas City: Ilya Tabakh (@ilyatabakh) from Somametric who also works on Edge Up Sports (big data analytics for fantasy sports), and Landon Young (@LandonGaryYoung) who founded World Help Solutions.

It was inspiring to learn what brought them to Kansas City, and about resources like @KauffmanLabs that helps bring the community together.

The next day, we met with folks at Kansas City accelerators and startups @ThinkBig, @getbigbang and @CEEDtheFuture. We heard stories about what it’s like to start and grow companies in Silicon Prairie, and it was interesting to meet people working in all sectors of tech, from telecommunications and healthcare to education and entertainment.

That evening, @SprintAccel hosted our meetup at their working space and it was fun having folks pop in throughout the day to work, meet and chat. We loved learning more about what everyone was working on – from @DJMany’s music portfolio app to @bgrffn’s work on mobile apps for hearing aids.

St. Louis

Our next stop was St. Louis where we visited an entrepreneurship class at @WebsterU. Together with teams from Skejul (@Skejulit) and @xlr8org, we chatted with the class about the experience of building tech companies and getting up and running with new businesses.

Our new friends joined us the next evening at our biggest event yet, hosted at the @CIC_StLouis space, together with @SynekSystem pouring from their improved beer storage and draft system. It’s been great to learn about so many tech companies in the midwest working on something different, and how they’re building amazing partnerships with one another along the way.

We even made met developers from the Illinois Institute of Technology. They drove five hours to meet us, and we’re looking forward to seeing them again in Chicago.

Nashville

Our final stop for the week was Nashville. After grabbing some BBQ, we dropped in on computer science students at Vanderbilt University (@VanderbiltU).

We also met teams at the Nashville Entrepreneur Center (http://www.ec.co/) to chat about their music apps. They shared how we might see some shakeups in how artists collaborate, how we listen to (and distribute) music and even how we go out for karaoke nights. We’re looking forward to seeing these Music City tech stars take their products live.

We finished our trip to Nashville with a happy hour on Monday night where developers from around the city joined us to chat about what they’re building.

Next stops

Come meet us as we finish our #TwitterDrive tour this week, starting in Chicago. We’ve even added a stop in Grand Rapids, MI to meet up with the The Factory, in addition to our scheduled stop in Detroit. We’d love to see what you’re working on. Sign up at flock.fabric.io.