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The SBA’s Small Business Week runs from April 29 to May 5 this year. Here’s why this event matters for today’s entrepreneurs.

Sunday kicked off National Small Business Week, and if you aren’t already celebrating in the festivities, you might want to start planning to join in now.

Led by the U.S. Small Business Administration, Small Business Week recognizes outstanding small business owners and entrepreneurs throughout the United States and in U.S. territories. From Sunday, April 29 through Saturday, May 5, the SBA will be livestreaming award ceremonies along with announcing the National Small Business Person of the Year. Other activities slated include a three-day virtual conference from May 1 to 3, co-hosted by SCORE and a Twitter chat on Friday, May 4 about tips for starting and growing a business.

Now more than ever before, National Small Business Week matters for entrepreneurs and small businesses of all sizes. Here’s a look at the effect this event has on the entrepreneurial community.

Small businesses are the backbone of the U.S. economy.

According to the SBA, more than half of Americans own or work for a small business. Entrepreneurs also help create two out of every three new jobs in the United States, yearly. Since the week-long event was first issued in 1963, the number of small businesses created has continued to rise. Fewer businesses are failing, too. Although it is quite popular to cite startup failure statistics — particularly in their first year — the reality is that 50 percent of small businesses survive five years or more in business.

2018’s National Small Business Week is setting the tone and pace for future events to come.

In addition to the livestreamed event ceremonies, virtual conference, and Twitter chat, the SBA will be hosting events to get entrepreneurs from all walks of life involved in the festivities on and offline.

A #SmallBusinessWeek Hackathon will be held in Washington, D.C. the weekend of April 27 to 29 with a $24,000 prize pool awarded to winning submissions. The SBA will also hit the road with a multi-city bus tour from May 1 to 3 as they highlight some of the best and brightest entrepreneurs across the country.

National Small Business Week helps foster a business-friendly environment.

The Kauffman Foundation’s recently included the results of their entrepreneur survey in their 2018 State of Entrepreneurship Address. Respondents have a positive outlook when it comes to the future of their businesses, but are less optimistic about the United States as a whole. One of the biggest reasons cited for this feeling was the belief that the government should prioritize an environment that fosters small business-friendliness and support.

While it may take a bit more than one week-long event each year to successfully create and build upon that kind of environment, it’s key to keep celebrations like National Small Business Week growing and thriving. For a look back at National Small Business Week through the years, the SBA offers video highlights to watch on their website.

This article is a repost from Business.com and can be found here.