A launch is scheduled for the U.S. Space & Rocket Center, but it won’t include a countdown or engine thrust or separations.

Launch, a decades-old 501(c)(3) nonprofit working to strengthen the North Alabama region through entrepreneurship, land use, and workforce initiatives, is offering entrepreneurs in North Alabama a chance to turn their business dreams into reality.

“The Singing River Trail Launch Tank exemplifies the strength of regional collaboration,” said Lisa Mays, Launch Tank co-chair. “Through this event, we’re not just supporting entrepreneurs; we’re empowering them to help shape the future of North Alabama.”

In collaboration with Singing River Trail, Launch has opened applications for the third annual Launch Tank competition at the Space Camp Operations Center. The Singing River Trail Launch Tank is an opportunity for regional entrepreneurs to showcase their business ideas in a “Shark Tank”-style event. The competition aims to connect aspiring and existing entrepreneurs with valuable resources and provide up to $25,000 in non-dilutive funding for the winners.

“North Alabama isn’t just a place on the map. It’s a shared vision,” said Co-Chair Michelle Epling. “The collective support offered through the Launch Tank competition is a differentiator in driving our community’s growth and innovation.”

The competition is open to residents of the eight counties encompassed by the Singing River Trail footprint: Colbert, Lauderdale, Lawrence, Limestone, Jackson, Madison, Marshall and Morgan counties.

“We are thrilled for the third Launch Tank competition,” said John Kvach, executive director of the Singing River Trail. “Like our previous finalists, this is your opportunity to contribute to something greater and create a positive impact in our community. Our vision goes beyond the competition.

“We want to connect as many entrepreneurs to the Singing River Trail as possible, making North Alabama a better place to live, work, and play.”

Applications for the Launch Tank 2024 competition will be accepted until March 31. Finalists will be announced April 12 leading up to the live pitching event April 29.

To apply and learn more about the competition, visit launch2035.org.