Genius in the morning is an indie-entrepreneurial venture whose aim is to promote and strengthen local communities through creativity, design and community participation. They are an entirely do-it-yourself, grassroots organization, which subscribe to the ethics that are intrinsic to the sustainable movement, such as an emphasis on creativity, strong local communities and social and environmental awareness. From their business cards to t-shirts to web design, they use local, handmade, sustainable goods and services whenever possible (and they say it’s almost always possible!).

Finalist Q&A: Altavert Alternative Advertising

Altavert is a specialty advertising service that allows you to take advantage of a practically limitless advertising medium – freeway traffic. Altavert let commuters advertise for you by placing your ads on the personal vehicles of people who live, work, and play in your target markets. You can accurately target specific neighborhoods and even streets, schools, or shopping centers with mobile advertising from Altavert.

Finalist Q&A: Aunt Kathy's LLC

Aunt Kathy's is a manufacturer of unique blend of BBQ sauces,dry rubs, lemon pepper fish fry mix and vadalia relish. Aunt Kathy's has found their niche in the food industry by developing a DIET BBQ sauce. Low sodium, low calorie, low carbohydrate sauces are great for diabetics and low carb diets.

Finalist Q&A: is a restaurant delivery service, which allows restaurants that normally can't provide delivery to offer this option to their customers, allowing them to generate extra revenue. They also provide marketing to these restaurants, which helps them to compete with the bigger chains.

Finalist Q&A: Advertising Spark

Advertising Spark teaches very small businesses how to advertise effectively using free and low cost tactics. They do this through an affordable tutorial that is a culmination of their 20 years of experience at some of the world's best known advertising agencies, coupled with scouring the best-selling books and the Internet for the latest ideas. They also teach classes in a traditional classroom setting.

Finalist Q&A: HomeSpot HQ

The HomeSpot HQ web application allows home and property owners to organize three key groups of information: routine maintenance tasks, projects and weekend to-do items, and historical facts about their property. Further, users of HomeSpot HQ will have access to special content and discounts from Home Improvement centers and local service providers. HomeSpot HQ is designed as a single, central repository for the critical information about one's home and property.

Finalist Q&A: Bean Sprouts

Bean Sprouts is a hip and healthy kids' cafe, that provides a place for families that is both healthy and fun. Under the guidance of a child nutritionist, Bean Sprouts built its menu with the help and enthusiasm of Gale Gand--renowned chef, author, and Food Network star, who believes in Bean Sprouts’ mission.

Finalist Q&A: AMMO Arts

AMMO presents monthly exhibitions by emerging to established artists. The gallery opened in December 2008, and is located in the heart of the French Quarter on Royal Street. They provide a cultural service by representing living artists, many of whom have connections to the city of New Orleans.

How did you come up with the idea for your business, and what, or who,is your main source of motivation?

Finalist Q&A: Spring Fever Outdoor Living Center

Spring Fever carry ergonomic tools, rare seed and plants, pottery from around the world and quality embellishments to adorn any style of garden. They also provide landscape design and install landscapes and hardscapes of all styles.

How did you come up with the idea for your business, and what, or who, is your main source of motivation?

Updates on the Seventh Idea Cafe Grant

Now that we have selected the finalists (read more about them here and here), voting for the winner of the Seventh Idea Cafe Grant is now open, and will continue until July 7th. Visit the voting page (free registration required).

Today we start presenting our finalists in more detail. Every finalist who sent in answers to our question will be featured on the Idea Cafe blog. Regulars can learn more about the competing businesses, and help us determine the winner with their votes. We will be presenting preliminary results, while voting is underway.

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