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Lindley Estes is a business writer for The Free Lance-Star and This blog is on Fredericksburg-area business. Send an e-mail to Lindley Estes.

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UMW graduate wins Startup Weekend Fredericksburg event

Andy Leonard (in pink shirt) celebrates with his team after winning the Startup Weekend Fredericksburg event Sunday. Photo by Matt Armstrong.

A team led by a 22-year-old man who recently graduated from the University of Mary Washington received top honors at the first Startup Weekend Fredericksburg event this past weekend.

Andy Leonard led a team called CampusIDeas, an application that enables people to store and use their college IDs on their smartphones and other mobile devices. Businesses could pay to deliver offers to students through the application.

Leonard and his friends came up with the idea a few weeks ago and refined it during the 54-hour Startup Weekend event at Germanna Community College in Spotsylvania County. They hope to deliver a fully functioning mobile application soon to college campuses in Fredericksburg and across the Mid-Atlantic region, and eventually throughout the nation.

Like the other nine teams that gave five-minute final pitches to a panel of judges Sunday night, Leonard’s worked on the concept throughout the weekend after the idea was judged to be among the best of the 28 presented Friday night.

The CampusIDeas team will receive automatic acceptance into the FredXchange Startup Accelerator, entry into the Made in FredVA “Shark Tank”-style business plan competition Oct. 24 and a free eCornell University online course.

A concept called Go Podium Pro that could help people overcome their fear of public speaking through web feedback finished second in the judges’ voting. FlashThrift, which could help people sell their unwanted items online, finished third and was named crowd favorite.

Other ideas that advanced to the final pitch round included businesses to help match musical tastes to clothes, to help working fathers spend more time with their children, to deliver coupons over digital devices, to manage household chores, to sell “tinker toys for adults” kits that can be built into various items, and to improve online instructional videos.

Startup Weekend events are held all over the world, but this weekend’s was the first one that has come to the Fredericksburg region.

Here is video of Leonard making the final pitch for CampusIDeas on Sunday. Mike Zitz, Germanna’s public information officer, shot the video.