CONNECT2018: The Rural Advantage was hosted by the Hannah Grimes Center and Keene Sentinel as a continuation of past, highly-attended CONNECT events and as a new addition to the Radically Rural Summit. People from around the country filled the Mabel Brown Room at Keene State College enjoying a performance by the New Hampshire Dance Institute (NHDI); an innovative display of food by CC&D’s; music, creative lighting, and bar service by Machina Arts, and dancing along to the Gaslight Tinkers of Brattleboro, VT.

Entrepreneur of the Year Award

As a tradition of CONNECT, the Hannah Grimes Center awarded a local small business entrepreneur with the Entrepreneur of the Year Award. In 2018, this was awarded to Rebecca Holland of Holland Homestead Farm. Located in Hillsborough, NH, Holland creates skin care products from goats’ milk. Learn more about Holland Homestead Farm here!




Based off of the Hannah Grimes Center’s quarterly PitchFork event where local entrepreneurs have the opportunity to pitch their business ideas to a room of investors, the PitchFork Challenge was created and made a staple of Radically Rural and CONNECT. The PitchFork Challenge offers a $10,000 cash prize to the winning business pitch and a $1,000 cash prize to the winning business idea. The two winners were announced at CONNECT2018:

Announcing the Winner of the $10,000 PitchFork Challenge:

Congratulations, Dan Profitt – owner of Butcher Pete’s Mobile Meat! “You’ve raised your animals with love, make sure they are processed with as much care! Custom butchery that comes to you.”

Watch the announcement here!

Visit Butcher Pete’s Facebook Page here!

Announcing the Winner of the $1,000 PitchFork Challenge:

Congratulations, Brenna Morris – owner of Luna’s Herbal, LLC. “Luna’s Herbal is an adult education program that teaches how to make natural remedies from native plants, while respecting our land community.”

Visit to learn more!




Hannah Grimes Center for Entrepreneurship Sponsors