By Steven Gordon, Lemonade Day National President
Thursday, July 18, 2019, will forever be a memorable date in the history of our Lemonade Day National Program: on that date last week, I was one of a small group of supporters of HB 234 that has become known as the “Save Our Lemonade Stands Bill” or the “Lemonade Bill” for a ceremonial signing event with Texas Governor Greg Abbott. This signing celebration took place in the historically significant Governor’s Public Reception Room on the second floor of the State Capitol. Being in the Capitol and in that room for any reason is special. Being there to support young kids by removing requirements for permitting and fees for hosting a lemonade stand in Texas was even more poignant!
Texas Representative Matt Krause introduced the bill, which was co-sponsored by Texas Senator Jane Nelson. Both were at the signing ceremony, along with long-time Lemonade Day supporters from Austin, Fort Hood/Killeen, and Galveston -- Gina Spagnola, Robert Evans, Amanda Sequeira, Morgan Briscoe, Cole Arledge, Laura Pennino, and me.
Experienced Lemonade Day entrepreneur Branson Burton, 8, who testified in support of the bill earlier this year, and his family members were invited by the Office of the Governor as was Sidharth Srinivasin, 17, and his family. Sidharth also testified in support of the bill.
The pure pleasure on Governor Abbott’s face was truly enjoyable to witness in person. The Governor invited all the kids and the adults in our group to gather closely for photos and a short video message. He remarked positively on the decorations we had brought – a lemon-themed tablecloth purchased from Kentucky-based Lemonade Day entrepreneurs and Ooh La Lemon founders Hailey Hertzman and Katie Vonder Haar; an ornamental mini lemon tree; fresh lemons in a woven basket; a vintage Depression Glass pitcher; clear drinking glasses; and of course, lemonade! Governor Abbott poured lemonade himself and shared it with several of the kids!
Media filled the room. WE filled the room. Lemonade LOVE filled the room! The spirit of entrepreneurship filled the room! So exciting! I truly wish ALL of you could have been there!
Please check out photos from the signing event and stay tuned for details on our plans for launching a statewide campaign in Texas on Sept. 1, 2019, to recruit more kids into our Lemonade Day program. We want to help as many kids as possible taste sweet success that accompanies owning a business at a young age. The new Lemonade Bill will go into event Sept. 1, and we are ready to engage more kids in the powerful life-long lessons that Lemonade Day teaches so well.
Thank you for your support now and always. Please visit LemonadeDay.org for more information.