Go Mt. Airy Business Expo

Mt. Airy CDC is happy to bring back the Go Mt Airy Business Expo for 2023! It’s coming Tuesday November 14, to NewCourtland’s facilities at Germantown & Sedgwick.

Designed as a platform for Philadelphia businesses to convene, converse, and learn, the Business Expo brings together helpful workshops, exhibitors, and more — including networking over happy hour!

General attendance is $25 and includes a continental breakfast and happy hour refreshments. Lunch ($15) from Herb Scott Catering is available for pre-purchase (November 7 deadline for lunch purchase — thank you). You may also elect to add on a professional headshot with our photographer Chris Kendig for an additional $25.

Interested in sponsoring a workshop, meal, or activity? Please reach out to us at info@mtairycdc.org.


*Order of events is subject to change.


9:15am–12pm: WORKSHOPS 

The Merchants Fund has provided support to Philadelphia merchants during times of financial hardship since 1854. Their vision is for a Philadelphia where small businesses and their owners thrive and where talented and diverse merchants have equitable access to meaningful assistance, capital, and other resources. They prioritize support to BIPOC-, immigrant-, and women-owned businesses operating in low- to moderate-income neighborhoods. In this session with the Operations Manger of The Merchants Fund, Simon Wellman, learn about grant writing for small businesses, the process of applying for funding, and what makes a successful grant application.

  • 10:15am: ChatGPT, AI & How They Can Help Your Small Business (With SCORE mentor Charlie Morris)

Artificial Intelligence, and ChatGPT specifically, have rapidly become valuable tools to make small businesses more creative and efficient. In this session, SCORE mentor and technology expert Charlie Morris will review the current state of the art in AI tools, focusing on ChatGPT’s capabilities. He will highlight specific use cases for ChatGPT in the small business environment. 

Expect to learn:

-How ChatGPT works

-How ChatGPT can help a small business to be more creative and efficient

-ChatGPT’s limitations and weaknesses

-Other emerging AI tools and what they will mean for small businesses

  • 11:15am [Option 1]: Ethical & Inclusive Design (With The Dream Creative/Beat in Between owner Raffi Marhaba)

Uncover the transformative power of design through a lens of ethics and inclusivity. In this session, you’ll gain a comprehensive understanding of how you can wield your business’s design choices responsibly by fostering ethical considerations in your work. Gain a deeper know-how with regard to how design and branding intersect with social justice, and leave empowered to put your business’s most socially responsible face forward.

  • 11:15am [Option 2]: Legal Services for Small Businesses (With CAFE Executive Director Rebecca Emerson, Esq.)

CAFE provides Philadelphia entrepreneurs and small business owners who have a demonstrated need with free legal and business services through their network of volunteers. The legal services they offer include topics such as: entity selection, entity formation, contracts, commercial leases, corporate governance, intellectual property, and risk assessment. CAFE’s Executive Director, Rebecca Emerson, Esq., will lead this workshop discussing small business legal services and how CAFE can provide support.


1:30–4:15pm: WORKSHOPS

  • 1:30pm [Option 1]: Safety & Security for Your Small Business (With Officer Hicks of the 14th Police District)

Expect to learn tactics and strategies for keeping your brick and mortar small business secure, deterring theft, vandalism, and break-ins, and how to respond in case of threat.

The financial aspects of a small business can be daunting for anyone. This workshop will help demystify some of the most important financial elements including credit management, lending, and other fundamentals. After the workshop, stay in touch with Mr. Parker who is offering free business growth reviews for business owners.

In this skill-sharing panel session, presenters will discuss approaches and formats small business owners can use to create and share their brand stories without blowing their marketing budgets. Topics will include marketing & PR, digital communications, visual storytelling, social media, and more. Attendees are encouraged to bring their questions.

AFTERNOON COFFEE provided by Avenues Cafe

  • 3:30pm: Modern Merchandising (With Vera Doyle owner Lori Thomson)

A lover of fashion and art, Thomson spent over 20 years working in retail, corporate retail, and creating visual displays for retailers such as Macy’s and Bloomingdale’s. She is now pursuing her passion project with her Mt. Airy boutique, Vera Doyle, which features products handmade mostly by women and especially women of color. She will cover topics including:

-How to keep stock fresh & new

-How to come up with amazing window displays & store themes

-In-store displays, signage, product placement to draw attention to new arrivals

-Creating a narrative/storytelling and how it can help the customer’s experience

-How to promote new merchandise & vendors

4:15–5:30pm: HAPPY HOUR NETWORKING presented by Toska & Bar Lizette

Thank You to Our Sponsors!