Dr. Hill and students
Wofford sophomore throws Wee Celebrations, parties for kids

NOTE: Wofford College sophomore Victoria Biggers won first-place in the Launch track of the college's Impact & Launch Competition held Saturday, March 28, on campus. Bigger's business, Wee Celebrations, which hosts parties from setup to cleanup for children of all ages, received $5,000 plus a year of co-working space from The Iron Yard. Winning the Impact track first-place prize was Phillip Habib's nonprofit venture – Learn More, Do More – which works with former prisoners to help them get trained and find employment in manufacturing and the service industry. He won $5,000 and a marketing/branding consultation from the Strategy Collective in New York. For more on the competition, go to: http://www.goupstate.com/article/20150328/ARTICLES/150329670.

By Trevor Anderson
trevor.anderson@shj.com
Spartanburg Herald-Journal
Published: Saturday, February 21, 2015


Victoria BiggersA neighbor's post on Facebook changed Victoria Biggers' life.

The Wofford College sophomore was scrolling through her news feed three years ago when she saw the neighbor's SOS, asking for an extra set of hands at her daughter's birthday and sleepover party. Eighteen guests were expected.

Biggers and a friend responded. They helped serve pizza and cake, painted nails and played games until bedtime.

"Once all the girls were in bed, I cleaned up the house," Biggers said. "When I got ready to leave, I had 19 smiling 9-year-olds and one extremely happy mom. My neighbor looked up at me and said, ‘You've got to start a business doing this. … I actually got (to) enjoy my daughter's birthday party.'"

And that's just what she did. In the following days, Biggers developed the concept for Wee Celebrations, an all-inclusive service that enables parents to throw one-of-a-kind parties but still have an opportunity to enjoy the festivities.

Biggers said her first customers included eight of the girls from the neighbor's party.

When it came time to pick a college, Biggers said she chose Wofford because of the school's entrepreneurial program, which is housed in The Space in The Mungo Center.

"Once I got to Wofford, I revamped my business structure," said Biggers, who recently turned 20. "I was turning down parties because of the demand. I don't like to tell people no. I worked out a model where I can hire (Wofford) students. … It has helped me keep up with demand. It has also helped student athletes and others make a little spending money."

Biggers is one of 10 finalists in the Impact & Launch Competition at The Space. In March, students will face off in a pitch competition for the chance at thousands of dollars in cash and services to bolster their startups.

An infusion of cash would enable Biggers to continue to invest in Wee Celebrations, possibly enabling an expansion into the corporate market as a side service for large company gatherings. Winning the competition would give her confidence and clout.

"One of the things I love about (Wee Celebrations) is that the possibilities are endless," she said. "My goal right now is to continue to expand out into Spartanburg County and, before I graduate, establish this business at another college."

Wee Celebrations can accommodate boy, girl and coed parties. Her parties so far have been for children age 4 to 15.

Biggers said Wee Celebrations is not like a traditional party planning business.

A basic package for a three-hour party costs $300. That includes setup, supplies, supervision and cleanup. Customers can choose to purchase other add-ons.

Biggers said parents have to provide a venue, but she has used The Space for parties. She said she has not yet worked out arrangements with businesses, such as restaurants, bowling alleys or skating rinks that typically cater to children's parties.

Wee Celebrations can handle about four parties per week. The owner hopes to quadruple that number in the coming months as she hires more people.

Biggers was born and raised in Clover.

She remembers her mother, Gretchen McCarter, a real estate agent, taking her along on trips to meet clients. McCarter would also allow her daughter to help her plan Pampered Chef parties and other soirees.

"It's something I've always enjoyed," Biggers said. "By her example, I learned how important it is to develop relationships with people. … I've never been afraid to spark up a conversation with a stranger."

Biggers said she is pursuing a business economics degree at Wofford with a minor in finance.

"It's neat to learn about things in class and then relate it to my business," she said.

Biggers, a resident adviser at Wofford, is known around campus as "The Gu." She earned the nickname — short for guru — because her classmates always come to her when they need help connecting with the right person.

For more information, visit: http://biggersvm.wix.com/wee-celebrations

Reprinted with permission