Lemonade Day One-Stop Shop

Learning to build a business plan
By: Todd Martin
True to their entrepreneurial drive to get ahead, a handful of ambitious youth and parents went to school Saturday to pick up some business tips for making, marketing and selling lots of lemonade.
For the second year, the Killeen ISD Career Center welcomed budding young business operators from around the area to meet with their own teacher and student experts at the school district’s specialty high school for career preparation.
Children with family members worked through stations at the school, meeting and collaborating with high school students to form business plans, design flyers, record video and audio announcements and even get some hints about preparing lemonade.
The One-Stop Shop took place three weeks before the 10th annual Fort Hood Area Lemonade Day the weekend of May 4 and 5.
Once again, families, school groups and others will set up stands to sell their own lemonade in varieties of flavors across Killeen, Harker Heights, Nolanville, Fort Hood, Copperas Cove and surrounding areas in a program designed to teach entrepreneurial skills and promote giving to charitable groups.
Keyairra Clements was as much a student as her 7-year-old son Ayden Jordan, a student at Reeces Creek Elementary School. “I hope he learns other aspects of making money,” the mother said, “that there are ways to make a living other than working for someone else.”
Young Ayden, excited to learn to run a business, said he is already trying out recipes at home for ice cream in anticipation of opening a business one day.
Saegert Elementary School fourth-grader Megan Sursa said she was excited to make money on her own efforts. She said several friends at her school are using a web tool to learn business tips such as the importance of location.
Emerie Rodriguez, a senior at the Career Center, spent the morning sharing with younger students how to plan a business.
“We’re getting them started on their business plans, how to sell,” said Rodriguez, who hopes to market her own line of cosmetics one day. She said the material they used concentrated on place, product, promotion and price.
“It’s cool to give kids a chance to have this experience in business,” she said. “They are learning to make a profit and are having fun. It’s good to be able to give back.”
Casey Windham, a Central Texas College culinary student, helped inform lemonade stand operators on a broad spectrum of information including hygiene, ingredients and product pricing and marketing. She also showed how lemon curd could be used to make pie tarts.
Now in its 10th year locally, Lemonade Day Project Coordinator Samantha Ricciardi said the community is supporting the effort enthusiastically as ever.
In its first nine years, the local event attracted 21,800 youth, reporting a combined $62,000 in revenue and $22,000 donated to charities. It has also generated two national entrepreneurs of the year, including last year’s winner Briana Liles, Trimmier Elementary School fourth-grader.
“We’re very proud of our youth in this area,” Ricciardi said. “We believe in them.”
While Lemonade Day promotes entrepreneurial skills, it’s not just for those looking to run a business. “Everyone learns something important, from saving money to communication, team building and working with partners.”