Awesome Foundation plans on handing out money for awesomeness

James McLeod
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Craig Ennis says he wants

St. John’s to be more awesome.

Ennis, who identified himself as the Dean of Awesome, is the guy heading up a brand new chapter of the Awesome Foundation For the Arts and Sciences and the Advancement of Awesomeness here in St. John’s.

This morning, Ennis and his fellow Awesome Foundation trustees will give somebody a $1,000 cheque to do something awesome.

“Yes, I think St. John’s is awesome,” Ennis said. “It could always be more awesome.”

The Awesome Foundation was founded in Boston in 2009, with the idea of funding awesome projects.

It’s since grown to 75 chapters in 12 countries, and a group of people in town decided it was time to get one on the go here.

At this point, it’s just 15 people who are kicking in their own money to give out monthly $1,000 grants to fund proposals for awesome projects.

“This is (from) our own pocket. It’s not a registered charity to keep the bureaucracy to a minimum. We don’t get tax receipts for it. We’re not even set up for taking donations, it’s just strictly the money out of our own pocket,” Ennis said. “The collective reason is basically, you know what? Why not put a bit more money into stuff that’s fun and unique and awesome?”

Whether it’s a public art project to capture the beauty of the Miami transit system, or buying bikes for needy kids in Calgary, the only thing that ties the projects together is the local trustees think it deserves funding.

Ennis pointed to a Halifax plan for a local park as another good example.

“They had a couple people build a concrete ping pong table, so you could just take your ping pong paddles and a ball to the park and play ping pong in the park,” Ennis said. “It’s community-based ideas that need a little money to get off the ground, or get going, or just be done. It can be arts. It can be business. It can be community stuff.”

The first awesome grant will be unveiled at 11:30 a.m. today at the Rocket Bakery.

Twitter: TelegramJames

Organizations: Awesome Foundation For the Arts

Geographic location: Boston, Miami, Calgary

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