How to Make & Run A Successful Lemonade Stand For Kids

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How to make & run a lemonade stand for kids!

How to Make & Run A Successful Lemonade Stand For Kids

It’s a hot one out there, and it’s just going to keep getting hotter this Summer!  That means you’ll most likely start seeing lemonade stands of all types, popping up on your neighborhood corners.  We can’t pass a rosy-cheeked kid sitting behind their stand, hoping for a car or passerby to stop and enjoy their lemonade.
Lemonade stands are a great way for kids to learn about business, finances, manners, cooperation, creativity and so much more.  There are a lot of great reasons to let the kids set up their lemonade stand in the front yard.

“Come and get your cold drinks!”

We all remember when we were kids, trying so hard to sell at our own stands. Now that we’re adults, we’ll always support the kids doing it today!  Starting a lemonade stand is something productive, fun and even educational for the kiddos this Summer.  They’ll learn responsibility and perseverance, how to make change and keep track of money, and even get creative with their entrepreneurial spirit!  Here are some fun ideas to get you started on making a lemonade stand for kids:
Lemonade may be the most popular route, but you may consider amping it up a bit. Offer cookies, brownies, bags of popcorn, Kool-Aid, or even iced coffee for the adult passers-by.  Decide what will fit your budget to make.  Buying bulk lemonade mix might be a good option for you.

Mix it up and offer unique sweets to your customers!

Beverages like iced tea or lemonade will probably be the cheapest, but it all depends on your own finances. It’s also fun to have family and friends bring over homemade goodies for the kids to sell.  Bottles of water are also really popular, especially on hot days.  HERE are some really fun ideas for alternatives and classic lemonade recipes.
Don’t forget that you’ll want to provide small paper plates, napkins, paper towels and plastic cups, too.  Buying these in bulk can really save a lot of money, and be more cost efficient for you, so your kids gain more profit.
Obviously, we adults can’t pass up a cute kiddo on the corner that’s desperately trying to make a little extra money to buy that video game or new dress.  We’ll get suckered into paying whatever they are asking, and sometimes, throw in a little more just to help support them.  If you’re looking to get your money back on the products you had to purchase to sell, make a budget sheet and factor in the costs.  Once you’ve made your investment back, the rest is profit!

How much should you charge for lemonade and treats?

If you already have the products on hand and aren’t worried about getting your money back, discuss with your child about the cost of the items he/she is selling. Together, come up with a reasonable amount for each item.  We’ve seen little “Tip” jars added to stands, as well.
If you’re donating to a charity, the tips can be used as profit for the kids.  If you’re selling more than 1 item at different prices, a price sheet might be a good idea.  That way the customer knows what they are paying, without confusion.  If you’re offering refills, decide whether or not to charge for additional cups.
Any small table will do for these projects.  It all depends on how much space you think you’ll need, and how big you want it to be.  A decent sized card table (which can be used for plenty of other things later) can be purchased for under $30.  Then, you’ll want some cardboard to enclose the table.

Let their imagination create the perfect lemonade stand!

Large refrigerator boxes work nicely, or you can simply grab some poster board or poster paper to wrap around the bottom of the table.  You can even just use a bed sheet or tablecloth to place over the box.

Next up is decorating! Clearly display what is on sale, and how much it will cost, then let them go wild and get imaginative on the design.  Perfection isn’t important – but letting their personality shine through IS!  If you’re offering refills, denote that on the sign, as well.  There are some really cute FREE printables to check out HEREHEREHERE and HERE.

Now that you’ve made your lemonade, lemonade stand, and treats, it’s time to sell them!  If your stand is only big enough for one kid to sit behind, consider asking the other kids to be the sales pitchers – yelling “Lemonade!” or “Come get a cool drink!  Only 50¢!” to bring in customers.  After each purchase, they can trade positions and each have their chance in different rolls.
Be sure to have napkins, cups, your pitcher(s) of lemonade, any treats, and cups readily available.  Have a cooler packed with ice that individually pre-poured cups can sit inside, to keep the beverages cold.

Let the kids be their own salespeople with their personalities!

The kids should have enough change to begin with, and help them to understand that the money they start with is only to make change-  it isn’t profit. No doubt it will be sunny outside, so make sure to lather on the sunscreen and keep the kiddos hydrated!  Check the weather the day before, to avoid any rain or extreme weather, as well.
It’s time to sell!  Kids with more energy will definitely get the attention of more customers to their lemonade stand.  A healthy lunch or breakfast before sales begin can help ensure that energy.
Let your friends and family know to stop by, to keep sales going and interest in tact.  Adult supervision is obviously very important – even on your own front lawn. Grab a lawn chair and your sunglasses, and get ready to be entertained by your little salesmen!

Get customers, and keep them coming back!

Decide beforehand, how long you’ll keep the stand open, and be sure to have the treats and beverages to do so.  Once the stand is closed, have your kids count the money and enjoy their profits, or feel great about your donation to a charity!
Now you’re ready to build your lemonade stand!
IMPORTANT NOTE:  Check with your local/state laws, as some states prohibit any sales of beverage of food without a permit (including lemonade stands)!  As crazy as this seems, you don’t want to get popped with a ticket or fine!  Read this article to find out more.



  1. Julie Wood Reply

    These are great tips for setting up a lemonade stand. My kids had a stand one year and had so much fun with it. I think the location is a good one and get people to interact and talk to them and it helps in selling your lemonade!

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