CASPER, Wyo. — Five finalists have been announced for the Visit Casper Business Challenge, the tourism bureau’s marketing team announced Monday.
$50,000 is at stake in the challenge, intended to help Casper’s visitor economy recover and drive new destination growth. There were 13 semi-finalists out of 27 total applicants.
The five finalists consist of four existing businesses and one new business.
- C Bracket Horse Barn, owned by Christy Martinez, aims to expand horseback trail rides and western experiences for visitors
- Turn on the Dark Entertainment, pitched by Nicholas Johnson, would develop a family entertainment center with haunted attractions that would appeal to Wyoming residents and visitors
- Old Town Family Fun owner Juliann Harvey is looking to improve the family fun attraction for locals, out-of-town residents, groups and events
- Alcova Resort owners Russell Mason and Razi Saydjari are looking to built a new lodge with cabins and all-inclusive activities
- Jon and Gayle Ramsey are looking to build a coffee roasting facility and storefront with Barbarian Roasters.
The finalists will face a panel of judges on Friday, November 12, with all seed fund disbursements being awarded by December 20. The pot might be awarded in full or spread among multiple finalists.
Visit Casper agreed to double the original pot in September due to the robust number of applications. The challenge is funded through CARES dollars.
“While this was our first time doing the Visit Casper Business Challenge, the quality of applicants and their proposed business plans, ideas and improvements were impressive,” said John Glassburn, Assistant Director of Impact 307.
“The spirit of innovation and entrepreneurship is alive and well in Casper, Wyoming, and this challenge affirmed that this state and our community are a great place to do business.”