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Raleigh, NC

Children's Business Fair

4160 Main Street, Raleigh, NC 27609 - ALL 45 SLOTS ARE CURRENTLY FULL

Saturday, September 10th, 2016.
From 2:30PM to 4:30PM.

Observe the opportunity for children to launch their very own startup business!

Kids develop a brand, create a product or service, build a marketing strategy, and then open for customers at our one-day marketplace. 

We will host the Raleigh Children's Business Fair at The Commons at North Hills (4160 Main Street, Raleigh, NC 27609) on Saturday, September 10, 2016 from 2:30 - 4:30 pm.  In addition to the participating entrepreneurs, families and the community are invited to attend. 

This event is sponsored by The John William Pope Foundation and the generous support of our donors and volunteers.  While the project was originally developed by Acton Academy and the Acton School of Business, we all believe that principled entrepreneurs are heroes and role models for the next generation.

Entrepreneurs are the people who make sacrifices to innovate, create jobs and serve their communities.

Apply for a booth

Ready to have the experience of a lifetime?

Child #1

Adult Contact for Child

Child #2 (optional)

Adult Contact for Child

Child #3 (optional)

Adult Contact for Child

Business Info

Contract Terms

Thank you to our incredible sponsors


The host of the Children's Business Fair, the John William Pope Foundation, a Raleigh, North Carolina based family foundation with over 30 years of giving to arts, education and humanitarian causes in the Triangle.


What is the Acton Children’s Business Fair?

The Acton Children’s Business Fair inspires children to discover their inner entrepreneur. The largest entrepreneurship event for kids in North America, this one-day market gives children the opportunity to showcase their very own businesses.

How many businesses will you accept?

We will accept up to 45 businesses.ALL 45 APPLICATIONS SLOTS ARE CURRENTLY FULL. 

Where should I begin? 

Start with our resources page. Read inspiring stories about other young entrepreneurs and play games to hone your business skills.

How do I apply? Can I apply as part of a group?

ALL 45 APPLICATIONS SLOTS ARE CURRENTLY FULL. Please contact us for more information on how to apply for next year's fair.  

What is on the application?

The application asks kids to think through some simple, but important elements of their business:

  • What product or service do you plan to sell?
  • What price will you charge for each product/service? How much will each product/service cost you?
  • How will you pay for your startup costs? If someone is helping you with your startup costs, how will you pay that person back?
  • How will you advertise/market your business before the fair? 
  • At the end of the fair, how will you determine if your business was a success? 

What if someone else has the same business idea?  

Two cupcake businesses? Not a problem. In general, we will let market forces play out, though we will let later entries know if another applicant has a similar idea so the later entrant can decide what to do.

How will the fair be set up?

The fair will be a tented outdoor event with booths. Each business will be given a booth with a 6-foot table, full-cover tenting, and 1-2 chairs. Table cloths will not be provided. We are not able to accommodate businesses requiring electricity.

Will electricity be available?

Unfortunately, we are not able to provide electricity to the booths.

What are the rules? 

1) Applicants must be between the ages of 6 – 14 on or before the September 10, 2016. 

2) This event is designed to give children the experience of selling a product or service. If a parent is found selling or promoting a child’s product or service, their child’s business will be disqualified from the competition.

3) Parents of younger children may sit in the booth, but the children should be responsible for set up, customer interaction, and sales.

4) Parents may help their child fill out the application, but we expect the children to do as much as possible by themselves.

How did the Acton Children’s Business Fair get started?

Jeff and Laura Sandefer and a few other families wanted to spark a sense of wonder and entrepreneurship in their children so they created the first Acton Children’s Business Fair in Austin, Texas, in 2007. That year, there were seven entrepreneurs and around 25 attendees. Now, there are over 115 entrepreneurs and 1,500 attendees at the Acton Children's Business Fair in Austin.

Have a question? Contact Us.