Mitch Daugherty, the cofounder and director of Built Oregon, chooses his words very carefully. He didn’t name his organization “build.” He named it “built” to signify both the history and ethos of how things are made here. And when he talks about the “Silicon Valley of consumer products,” that’s Oregon. Not Portland. Oregon. So it only stands to reason that an organization designed to celebrate the amazing consumer product folks in the state would venture out to other parts of the state. And that’s exactly with Built Oregon did for Built Festival 2023, through a collaboration with Cultivate Bend.
What’s Cultivate Bend? I’m glad you asked.
Pretty cool, right? Now you see why Built wanted to partner with Cultivate to pull off this year’s festival.
But I digress. Let’s give your a rundown of the event that was Built Festival 2023…
Built Festival 2023
Hosted at the new Oregon State University Cascades campus, Built Festival 2023 — “Cultivated in Oregon. Built by Community.” — was comprised of an afternoon of consumer product conversations on the main stage, a marketplace featuring a variety of local founders with products for sale, and a closing party featuring event more local products. All of which was capped off by a gathering at the Crux Fermentation Project for all of the consumer products people in town.
Conversations this year included (everything was recorded and will be available on the Built Oregon YouTube channel soon):
The importance of defining your core customer and channels in order to effectively drive sales
Balancing the art and design of products with the challenges of scale and production
- Ken Tomita, Co-Founder/Chief Creative Officer Grovemade
- Angela Christensen, Wood Management & Product Development Breedlove Guitars
The opportunities and challenges in scaling a cpg brand through self production
The challenges and opportunities in harnessing the full potential of regenerative agriculture practices
- Cate Havstad-Casad, Founder Range Revolution/ Co-Owner Casad Family Farms/ Founder Havstad Hat Company
- Wendy Brinkley, Marketing Manager Oregon’s Wild Harvest.
The Warm Springs Commissary Project: A Discussion
A discussion about the history, vision and future impact that the Warm Springs Commissary will have for the Warm Springs community and region as a whole.
- Dustin Seyler, Small Business Program Manager Warm Springs Community Action Team,
- Chris Watson, Executive Director Warm Springs Community Action Team
- Jonathan Smith, Chairman of Tribal Council Confederated Tribes of Warm Springs.
- Moderator: Jocelyn Rice, Founder, Black Earth United
Marketplace vendors included:
- Altitude Beverages
- Cheri’s Hazelnut Cream
- Fixa FOODS
- Gather Nuts
- Hot Mama Salsa
- Josie’s Best
- Nico’s Ice Cream
- Pure Polish Products
- Range Revolution
- Square Baby
- Warm Springs Community Action Team
If you’re interested in more from the event, visit the Built Oregon Instagram account. To learn more or to stay up-to-date on Built, visit Built Oregon.
[Full disclosure: I am the cofounder of Built Oregon. I also get the opportunity to run the slides during Built Festival.]