About a month ago there was a story on our local news station about some how a group of children were banned from hosting a lemonade stand on their parent's property. In fact, the kids claim they were raising money for an ill child. Apparently HOA rules strictly forbid vending of any kind from their townhouses. Wonder if this goes for Lia Sophia parties and girl scout cookies as well? Hmm.
Now, I agree with this rule to an extent, but wow. For example, I've always hated those professional garage sales -- you know you've witnessed this too ... that front lawn and driveway cluttered with crap for sale every single day for weeks on end. Really, I've seen this in New Jersey, New York and around the corner from my dad's house here in Florida. In this case, however, we're talking about little kids doing something we've all done. Sell lemonade!
Lemonade stands are like a rite of passage for every child in America -- at least that's how it was growing up in the '70s and '80s. Back then, it was my main means of earning a living during those hot Long Island summers. The Lemonade stand was always much more fun that delivering papers (ugh, sweaty with actual physical labor involved) or babysitting (ugh, dealing with parents' rules like, the kids are only allowed to watch The Cosby Show, deeming Growing Pains as "inappropriate" - so Kirk Cameron's character Mike had a friend named Boner, whatever!)
I loved hosting lemonade stands! Sure sweating balls whilst standing behind a cheap-ass folding table balancing what felt like a 100 lb Tupperware pitcher filled with citrusy goodness and a stack of waxy floral Dixie cups (remember those?!) praying a passer-by grew tiresome. But I was my own boss!
I could open and close whenever I felt like it. Nobody could question me on how in G*d's name one toddler could possibly knock off an entire plate of brownies in three hours. Um, hello! Seriously, people. Entertaining your rug rats for endless hours at a time builds up an appetite. Just kidding. Sort of.
Anyway, as cranky as I am about people not following the rules of a town house or condo, I believe some rules are meant to be broken. Let a kid have a lemonade stand once in a while. Although maybe ask them to refrain from shouting, "LEMONADE HERE! GET YOUR ICE COLD LEMONADE HERE!" I can see how that would grate on my nerves after about an hour, especially if working on a freelance assignment.
Click here for last month's news story about the children selling lemonade in Palm City, Florida and to view the video.