The sweltering summer heat is relentless, and if you only had a little spending money, perhaps you could take refuge in a nice cool place like a movie theater. But, how to raise some quick funds when mom and dad won’t fork out a few bucks? Sure, you could take a summer job, mowing the neighbor’s lawn or delivering newspapers, but why risk heat stroke when it was much simpler to build a nice, shady lemonade stand. This time-honored childhood tradition has probably been in existence for as long as there have been lemons and glass pitchers. Simply build a ramshackle storefront out a few pieces of discarded plywood, paint a few signs on some cardboard, get a package of plastic cups and a couple of bags of ice, and fix up your tastiest batch of lemonade.
Lemonade stands were often our first exposure to the American dream, capitalism at its finest. And when summer rolled around, and the streets were filled with weary travelers, their throats parched from the blistering sun, there were few that weren’t willing to dig into their pocket for a spare dime or quarter to exchange for a cool glass of liquid refreshment. In fact, the only advertising necessary was a simple sign that said “Lemonade!” In other words, build it and they would come.
Here’s a pair of crafty twins in Florida, whose lemonade stand has proven so successful that the Associated Press did a feature story on their business. Let’s take a look at these young entrepreneurs and see what makes their lemonade stand so special, and so popular:
Of course, the only thing that could put a damper on your success, other than a summer rainstorm, was the emergence of a competitor, perhaps one who sold their wares for a nickel cheaper. Here’s a quick glimpse into the cutthroat world of lemonade wars, courtesy of My Little Pony:
So, let’s hear from all of you former lemonade merchants. Did the arrival of summer persuade you to go into business, turning other people’s thirst into financial gain? Were you successful in your endeavors? Share all those memories of selling lemonade with us at Retroland as we fondly remember this childhood tradition. And, just to make you thirsty and nostalgic all in one swoop, we’ll leave you with this classic commercial: