By ROGER SCHNEIDER firstname.lastname@example.org
---- — GOSHEN — Lemonade Day will expand in Elkhart County in May to include Goshen children who want to become young entrepreneurs.
During the first three years of the event in the county, it was mostly centered in Elkhart. According to organizer Meggan Fink, the goal this year is to work with Junior Achievement and bring the program to the Maple City.
Lemonade Day, which is May 3, is a nationwide organization that dates to 2007 and teaches children from kindergarten through 12th grade how to operate a business by setting up a lemonade stand.
“With Lemonade Day we encourage kids to do three things,” Fink said. “Spend a little. They will have to go out and buy their supplies. We encourage them to save a little. We encourage them to open up a savings account at a local bank or even putting money in a piggy bank to save for college. And we encourage them to share a little with a non-profit in our community.”
Last year more than 800 Elkhart-area students registered for Lemonade Day but Fink said the organization could not verify how many children followed through and actually operated a stand. This year’s goal is to have 1,200 children register.
Two workshops will be held at Concord Mall’s meeting room in coming weeks to allow children to register and pick up information. The workshops are set for March 29 and April 19 from 10 a.m. to noon. Students who attend will be able to pick up a backpack with a Lemonade Day workbook and fliers. There will also be tables of information and voluteers to offer advice.
The idea behind the day is to promote entrepreneurship to children.
“Maybe this encourages them to set up another lemonade stand a month later and get some money,” Fink said. “It encourages kids to start their own business and think about geography, where they want to set up their stand and how to partner with another student and be a business partner at a young age.”
Some children who participate go beyond the basic lemonade stand, according to Fink.
“What’s so funny is kids are so smart,” she said. “They will set up their lemonade stands and sell a few extra things like cookies or candy to make their customers happy.”
The Lemonade Day committee is an independent organization, Fink said, though some members are also members of Junior Achievement. JA works through local school systems to promote business education. Fink thinks Lemonade Day fits that model well.
Lemonade Day on the Web www.elkhart.lemonadeday.org www.facebook.com/LemonadeDayElkhart