Sunday, October 16, 2016

BUCKET LIST UPDATE No. 301: Buy lemonade from kids at a stand

There’s something All-American about kids selling lemonade from a stand of their own. You don’t run across these types of lemonade stands every day, and I couldn’t honestly say that I’d ever bought lemonade from a true-life lemonade stand like this. For that reason, I put it on my “bucket list” several years ago and got the opportunity to officially scratch if off my list on Sat., Oct. 7.

Lemonade stands are generally eyed in a positive light. They teach kids business basics like supply of goods, customer service, exchange of currency for goods, the value of a dollar and the results of hard work. They also allow children to get a taste of what it’s like to have a real job, something most kids don’t get until they take on their first, real part-time job.

Last Saturday, I found myself at the Conecuh Sausage Festival, walking around, checking out all of the booths and taking pictures for the newspaper. While walking around, I encountered Conecuh County Board of Education member Odessa Wallace of Repton and her granddaughter Zyon Blackmon, who were operating a lemonade stand to raise money for piano lessons for Blackmon. I’d heard earlier in the week that they were going to be there, but I’d forgotten about it until ran into them at the Sausage Festival.

Odessa, who I’ve known for years, was helping her granddaughter by showing her how to deal with customers, how to help customers make their selections from a printed menu and how to prepare and serve the lemonade. They offered an impressive variety of lemonade-related products at the stand, including different size cups of lemonade. I opted for the 12-ounce cup, which cost $1.

I have to admit that that cup of lemonade was among the finest I’ve ever had, maybe THE finest. I’d run a 5K footrace not even an hour before and had not had anything to eat or drink all morning, so I was more than a little thirsty. I drank the entire glass in about three gulps while standing there chatting with Odessa and her granddaughter.

Having had to pay for my daughter’s piano lessons in the past, I can appreciate how expensive those lessons can be. My hope is that Odessa and young Zyon made a lot of headway toward paying for her piano lessons through her lemonade stand sales. Given the large crowd at the Sausage Festival, the fact that Odessa is a well-known community leader and Zyon’s salesmanship, I suspect that they did very well with their lemonade stand.

I was really impressed by the lemonade stand itself. Someone had obviously taken a lot of time and care to build it. It looked sturdy, was painted and came complete with a well-made sign.

In the end, how many of you have bought lemonade from kids at a stand? When and where did you do so? Who were the kids running the stand? Let us know in the comments section below.

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