Jiggly Boy

In just a matter of days, Brave New Workshop Comedy Theatre owner and Minnesota dad John Sweeney turned what could have been a meaningless 15 minutes of fame into something long lasting and decidedly more important.  Jiggly Boy first made his appearance at a Minnesota Timberwolves game over a decade ago. This February, Jiggly Boy came back to welcome Kevin Garnett home to Minnesota.  The moment – and Garnett’s priceless reaction – has shown up everywhere from The Huffington Post to People to the Daily Mail, and just hit 6 million views on YouTube. “Jiggly Boy” is fielding interview requests from as far away as Japan, the story made the front page of Reddit, and social media continues to buzz, with nearly 75 million Twitter impressions.

He’s known for the jiggle, but John Sweeney took the spotlight and shined it on a national nonprofit organization, turning it into smiles.

The shirtless welcome-home dance for Kevin Garnett made not only Garnett smile, but nearly all the 19,000 fans in the sold-out arena. And to continue not only making people grin but actually giving children born with cleft lips and palates a new smile, Sweeney is determined to raise both awareness and funds for Smile Network International, a humanitarian organization that provides life-altering reconstructive surgeries and related healthcare services to impoverished children and adults in developing nations.

Sweeney enlisted partners to create and promote JigglyBoy.com at no cost, in order to leverage the “Jiggly Boy” momentum to raise awareness and money for Smile Network International. In addition to the Jiggly Boy video and a link for people to donate to Smile Network International, the site features a fun meme generator — which lets people share smiles by sending photos of Jiggly Boy with customized messages — and a Jiggly Boy merchandise shop (complete with a T-shirt with Jiggly Boy’s oversized gut on it), with all proceeds going to the Smile Network International.

submitted by Emma Strub