Tom Tom says thousands attended festival's events

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CHARLOTTESVILLE, Va. (CBS19 NEWS) -- More than 43,000 people attended events during the week-long series of events that made up the seventh annual Tom Tom Founders Festival.

According to a release, Tom Tom estimates this reflects about 20,000 unique participants at its 227 events.

Various competitions, fundraisers and partner events raised and awarded more than $223,500 to nonprofits, entrepreneurs and researchers.

“The festival team is tremendously grateful to the community of Charlottesville and all of our many partners, friends and volunteers here who have chosen to make this a week of inclusive innovation, creativity and togetherness,” said festival Executive Director Paul Beyer. “Our city has exceptional brains, beauty and heart, and all three were on display last week as we welcomed hundreds of speakers and visitors from across the country to our historic downtown.”

Between the various summits, workshops and more, there were also the week-long events like the Craft Cocktail Competition. Alec Spidalieri from Junction was selected as the Judge's Choice and Carrie Hodgkins of Lost Saint was the crowd favorite.

At the Youth Summit, which brought in hundreds of teens, L&A Tee Shirts won the Business Pitch Challenge and a spot in the Community Investment Collaborative entrepreneur incubator.

Also at that summit, the W.L. Lyons Brown Innovation Laboratory at the University of Virginia picked two teams to join its incubator program: MindTriggers from St. Anne's-Belfield and Art for the Heart, a combined team from Tandem Friends and Monticello High School.

The winner of the Crowdfunded Pitch Night was Satellite Bootcamp, a summer program for budding entrepreneurs.

And at the American Evolution Innovations Cup, Aecium Medical Solutions took the top prize of $10,000, while Candid Campus Tours won $5,000 in second place and French Slide placed third with a $3,000 prize.

Finally, Chef Javier Figueroa-Ray from Pearl Island Foods won the Iron Chef contest with his take on Charlottesville's new Signature Dish, a ham biscuit with poached egg, hollandaise sauce, trout roe caviar and a sweet potato hash.

Everything wrapped at 8 p.m. on Sunday with the end of the multi-day Block Party featuring music, food, and more.

For more information on the Tom Tom Founders Festival, click on the link in the Related Links box.

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