One hot-weather memory of my childhood is setting up a lemonade stand–one of the few ways we had of making some money! Even now I love to stop to buy a cold drink from some eager young entrepreneurs when I see them hawking their wares at the end of their driveways.
When your children are restless for a new project to capture their interest, hosting a lemonade stand planning party can be a cool and grand way to teach them about economics, marketing, creativity and charity.
You may want to have this planning meeting a week prior to the day of hosting the stand so you will have time to advertise it to the neighborhood. Together with the children, decide if the lemonade stand will be to collect funds for charity.
Let the participants choose a charity that means something to them–a local children’s hospital, a school or community project. Encourage people to pay it forward and buy a cup for a fellow neighbor, the local postal worker or dog walker. Advertise the cause on the booth using large signs and have flyers about the cause available to hand out to customers.
Take time with them to make a list of the items they will need– a stand, chairs, color-coordinated signs to promote their stand, a money box and change, and ice, cups and lemonade. Paper towels for spills would be helpful. Set the children to gathering the items for creating the stand. Check on the Internet and Pinterest for ideas on how to construct and decorate the stand itself–portable tables, PVC pipes, and wooden crates are good ideas to try.
Build a marketing campaign for the booth, a great way to meet the neighbors. Choose a date (s) when there will be a lot of street traffic in the neighborhood, Your children can create signs to advertise the booth at corners around the neighborhood, directing traffic to the stand. Tell your friends about it on your private Facebook page or through a text message or email.
If you want to add to the stand’s sales, consider adding iced coffee for adult customers and homemade cookies,
Take a photo of your stand-out lemonade stand and email it to friends and neighbors to increase traffic throughout the day. Adult supervision is smart to have during the time the stand is open.
Create incentive programs to keep the children interested in their business throughout the summer if you plan for it to last that long. If they choose to donate the earnings, plan a special trip to the organization to drop off the check. Or if they are saving up to purchase something special, establish a chart showing how close they are to their goal.
In addition to raising funds, lemonade stands are great for social gatherings in a neighborhood. You can visit with your neighbors over a tasty beverage, and your young entrepreneurs will learn valuable lessons from this summer’s lemonade stand. Enjoy!