As summer temperatures start to climb, it is likely we will see those neighborhood lemonade stands starting to show up on some Spokane street corners. There is nothing more American than a kid’s lemonade stand. When kids get an idea to set up a little business, they should be encouraged. Lemonade and Kool-Aid stands are signs that entreprenuerism is alive and well. The whole experience teaches kids important lessons about business. They begin to understand risk. They appreciate the realities of dealing with an operating overhead, and what it means to make a profit. They learn about promotion and marketing, and they soon learn how important it is to offer a product for which there is a demand. They get a hands-on practical lesson about economics too. We should always support these young business operators.
Too many Americans have no concept about how difficult it is to start and grow a business. Often folks think they are rich because they own a business. Even government treats business owners as though they have plenty of money, but in reality, if it was easy to own a business and assume the risks associated with operating a business, everyone would be doing it, and of course, everybody isn’t.
Then there’s the story of a Terre Haute Indiana robber who apparently thought a kid’s lemonade stand was an easy target, until the crime went sour. The guy grabbed $17.50 from the street corner stand and ran off. The little girl who had set up the lemonade stand chased the bad guy. He ducked into a nearby home. The child called police who, after an hour-long stand-off arrested the thief on a preliminary felony charge of robbery. Stealing from a lemonade stand is really low, but even that experience carries a lesson. Retail businesses with cash on the premises are attractive to criminals. The girl and her friends plan to keep their stand open, but with an adult’s supervision. In other words, they have instituted some new security measures.I encourage summertime entrepreneurs. I applaud any kid who opens a lemonade stand, and if I see one…I’ll stop for a cool drink.
With commentary on 920 KXLY I’ Mike Fitzsimmons.
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