After someone called the police because of a lemonade stand in Stapleton, Colorado, last year, Country Time Lemonade stepped in.
Three boys who launched the lemonade stand were trying to raise money for charity. But because they didn’t have a permit, police shut it down.
It’s happening all across the country. Incidents like the one in Colorado spurred Country Time to create “Legal-Ade,” a service through which the company will pay the fines for any family with kids whose lemonade stand is shut down by law enforcement.
The team will deal with permit issues, and if a child gets fined for running a lemonade stand, the company will reimburse the kid for the exact fine, up to $300 (with a total limit of $60,000).
“Legal-Ade will defend kids’ right to a lemonade stand and all the benefits they bestow,” the company said.
The Country Time Legal-Ade website says its services are available to residents of the United States who are the parent or legal guardian of a child younger than 14 years old operating a stand.
Country Time has even donated to charity in the name of lemonade: The company said last June that for every retweet the Legal-Ade video on Twitter receives (@CountryTime), the company would donate $1 (up to $500,000) to help children who get busted in the years ahead.
Unfortunately, its Twitter page doesn’t currently have a tweet that links to the video any longer. Here’s a copy of the ad as posted on Vimeo by Chris Serrano:
So, what happened with the boys and their lemonade stand in the Denver area?
The City Council there voted to exempt children from being required to have a special license for a stand. Now, children age 17 and younger in neighborhoods in the city may have lemonade stands without repercussions.
Country Time posted a congratulatory tweet when it happened:
Very refreshing, Denver! Thanks for doing your part to #SaveLemonadeStands. We’ll see you and the Knowles Family in October to celebrate this sweet occasion! Lemonade is on us. https://t.co/BXSEGCVZQI
— CountryTime (@CountryTime) September 19, 2018
The vote came after the boys’ mother, Jennifer Knowles, started a petition to change local laws about it. There is even an official ordinance on the City Council’s website now.
It’s become such a big issue there that now it’s at the state level. In February 2019, the Senate Business Labor and Technology committee at the Colorado State Capitol met to debate Senate Bill 19-103, which prohibits any local government from requiring children to get a permit or license to run their own business.
The bill says a child’s business must be a sufficient distance from a commercial entity and can only be run on an “occasional basis.” But lawmakers even put an interesting detail in there: The business cannot operate more than 84 days in any one calendar year. The bill was signed into law on April 1, 2019.
Texas has followed suit: On June 10, 2019, Governor Greg Abbott signed into law a bill prohibiting police from shutting down lemonade stands throughout the state.
The Texas bill legalizes the occasional sale of lemonade and other nonalcoholic drinks at stands run by minors.
Cheers to the state lawmakers and Country Time for helping out the young entrepreneurs of our nation!