The gal-pal co-founders of Unbound want to wish you a Happy Galentine’s Day!
Yep, Valentine’s Day is coming up. Will we be celebrating that here at Unbound?? That answer is TBD. What we will, however be celebrating, is Galentine’s Day! So here’s to wishing you a Happy Galentine’s Day!
What is Galentine’s day you may ask?
Chances are, if you haven’t been living under a rock you’ve probably heard of it before. This fake-holiday is officially only 10 years old! Also, not really a holiday – totally made up on TV no less. And we’re definitely here for it.
So, here’s a quick write-up of it’s history, but if you just want a bite-sized summary, here it is:
The character Leslie Knope (played by Amy Poehler) on the show Parks and Recreation, picked February 13th, the day BEFORE Valentine’s day, to hang with her girl friends, gorge on waffles, and celebrate their friendships.
“Every February 13th, my lady friends and I leave our husbands and our boyfriends at home, and we just come and kick it, breakfast-style, ladies celebrating ladies. It’s like Lilith Fair, minus the angst. Plus frittatas.”
Leslie Knope, Parks and Recreation
So basically, Galentine‘s Day is a celebration of friendship.
It focuses on the quality and much-needed platonic relationships between lady friends, and the importance of those in our lives. So today on the Unbound blog we would like to focus on the relationship between our two gal pal co-founders Jess Primavera and Marina Ganopolsky. Our third cofounder, Michael Dere, is awesome too! but for these purposes we’re focusing on the girls. Sorry, Mike. (Don’t worry, we’ll soon do a post on you and your love of making the perfect cappuccinos. Indispensable. )
So here’s Marina and Jess’ Galentine’s love story, to be celebrated this week.
Fun fact – Marina and Jess met at a women’s travel conference, aptly named Women’s Travel Fest. That’s right – could we get more niche – but also more apropos here?? No. No we can’t.
( Women’s Travel Fest 2020 is incidentally is coming up next month, and if you don’t have tickets you should get them ASAP and Just Go! This incredible event is organized by Kelly Lewis, who happens to be one of Unbound’s hosts, running a fabulous women’s-focused tour company called Damesly. )
So, Women’s Travel Fest was were Jess was heading to learn more about the business of travel and its opportunities , as well as to connect with female travelers and female trip organizers – Unbound’s primary demographic.
Marina, having just made the decision to get into travel, was going to explore what options she could have in pursuing her travel dreams as a vocation (it turned our that a Wall Street job wasn’t terribly satisfying – go figure).
Empowering Women, and Each Other.
Both Jess and Marina are super passionate about empowering women. And empowering each other has been a gift that keeps on giving for these two.
They’ve both got backgrounds in deep tech but their first love has always been travel. In the words of Melinda Gates “You never actually meet a great friend, you recognize her.”
You never actually meet a great friend, you recognize her.
Melinda Gates, Moment Of Lift
And oh boy was that true when Marina and Jess met each other at the pitching workshop @ WTF. In this small, intimate setting, both gals spoke about their love of travel and how they see it changing the world – and the rest was history. Jess and Marina spent the next few days eating and drinking their way through Manhattan; participating in every session they could at WTF, and generally getting to know each other.
By the end of this incredible weekend they both knew they wanted to build something together. They recognized each other.
Now almost a year later Jess and Marina are co-founders, along with Mike, here at Unbound. They have almost completed a stint with Babson’s Miami WINLab (Women Innovating Now) Accelerator. (We wrote about that application process here). In that brief time, they’ve learned a TON about themselves, each other, and the world of travel startups.
As you can guess, as in any relationship, it hasn’t all been smooth sailing. There have been some rough tumbles up and down in both of their personal and professional lives. But you never know how strong a relationship is until it’s been tested. And this Galentine’s Day, Marina and Jess are celebrating that journey, and we hope you can celebrate with them. With US.
So – back to Galentine’s day. Yes, it’s fake. Yes, it was made up. But it was the holiday we needed! Why are relationships between women not celebrated more??
So, Yes, you should def have some waffles.
But more Importantly, grab a gal pal and DO something with her.
Something big, something meaningful, something that will inspire our daughters.
Do something that will empower the both of you, and will remind you that strong, meaningful relationships between women who are friends are as important as romantic ones, or family ones, or work ones.
Those relationships grow, they empower, they mature, they nurture, they inspire , they evolve everyone involved.
(And the gals involved in those friendships will also be the best at holding your hair back when you’ve had too much Galentine’s celebrating. Just sayin’.)
So, on this Galentine’s Day, we, Jess and Marina, wish all the gals out there – especially the ladies of the 4th WINLab Cohort in Miami, of which we’ve LOVED being a part of – a good and meaningful Galentine’s day.
We want to know how you’re celebrating this fake, but very necessary holiday. (And If you come across a particularly delectable waffle & mimosa combo, send it our way). Leave us a comment below or on social (those links are above) – we can’t wait to hear about how you spend your Galentine’s Day 2020!