Our Kick-Off Celebration brought out the best of our community as we celebrated our first year in NorthLight and introduced the entrepreneurs who will be taking part in our first ever Yukonstruct Startup Bootcamp! The overwhelming enthusiasm brought in from the community made for a warm and welcoming evening, and the entrepreneurs’ passion added an element of excitement that mirrors the energy fueling Yukonstruct.
Who doesn’t love cheese? Whitehorse locals Larra Daley and Stephan Biedermann saw on opportunity to bring quality cheese to Whiethorse and are located in Horwood’s Mall on Main Street. They opened last Tuesday and cheeses from around the world have been flying off the shelf. Say hello to Cultured Fine Cheese!
Larra and Stephan joined YuKonstruct to help them with their business. About a month ago, Larra signed up for a weekend workshop on business development being offered by local consultant Michael Pealow through YuKonstruct. Stephan, a contractor and carpenter by trade, took the Laser Cutter 101 course to create their shop sign.
“I can’t believe how easy it was” said Stephan, “and the sign looks so good. As a contractor, I loved that I could do it myself”. Asked if he would be back, Stephan replied: “I was blown away by what YuKonstruct has. The equipment, the expertise…I will certainly be back for Cultured Cheese but also my home building business!”
Yukonstruct is a makerspace; a space for makers, builders, tinkers, and hobbyists to gather and let their creative juices flow.
Every so often these elements combine with an entrepreneurial spirit, and creation and business meet. This phenomenon reached new heights with a stock deal worth $403 million as MakerBot Industries, the most well-known 3D printer brand in the market, was acquired by Stratasys, a Minnesota-based company and leader in 3D industrial printing and manufacturing. MakerBot was conceived in a Vienna hackerspace, a makerspace more focused on computers and technology than machinery.
Back home in Yukon a similar event recently occurred with the unveiling of a home-buildt tractor at the annual conference to promote advancement of agriculture in the territory. The Bobcat-like machine named NorTrackTor was created by Arctic Automate, Tom Bamford and Yukonstruct’s facilities manager Logan Sherk’s business, using Yukonstruct’s space and tools, specifically welders, induction forge and metal saw, and designs obtained from Open Source. The Open Source network is instrumental to the makerspace general concept by providing free blueprints and materials lists for the general public rather than commercializing and profiting from product initiatives.
NorTrackTor is an affordable and basic in design tractor, making repairs easy, that was build for a price points comparison farming in remote locations and the overall goal of encouraging less of a barrier to commercial farming. So this home-buildt tractor is a solution that is applicable in the North not just for farming but also quite possibly for smaller placer mining operations and other such industries.