Children help children with lemonade sales

PAT FRIDGEN
Mason Lukow, Dustin Maggio and Lee Kuhn are selling lemonade this fall to raise money for a good cause. The primary school students are taking advantage of Greencastle traditional celebrations to reach the public. They set up a lemonade stand at the Apple Festival and will do the same during Heritage Christmas.

A small goal achieved quickly led to a larger goal with a broader cause for students in the multi-grade classroom of Jeanette Monteith at Greencastle-Antrim Primary School.

The students opened a lemonade stand in October and sold drinks to students and faculty. As the money rolled in, they incorporated educational skills into the project, working on counting coins, graphing, counting by multiples, reading and writing. They then purchased the desired gumball machine for the classroom.

At that point, the youngsters decided to expand their focus to help other children in need. Monteith had shared that a student from her class in another school district last year died of cancer. The G-APS students chose the renowned Alex's Lemonade Stand as the recipient of future donations. The organization raises awareness of childhood cancer and funds research for treatment and cures. It sprang from the efforts of Alexandra Scott in 2000, who as a 4-year-old cancer patient set up a lemonade stand to raise money for her doctors. Word spread and in 2004 volunteers across the country raised $1 million. Alex died that Aug. 1. To date the foundation in her name has raised $25 million, half from front yard lemonade sales.

Monteith's classroom raised $400 at Greencastle's Apple Festival, charging 25 cents per glass or accepting donations. "Even if they didn't drink any, they gave us money," said Dustin Maggio.

The children now have their sights set on the three Fridays of Heritage Christmas. They also have a webpage to accept donations. It is alexslemonade.org/stands/19640 People can follow the progress of Room 206 online as Monteith and her students sell lemonade, one glass at a time, to help children and their families affected by cancer.