May The Best Lemonade Stand Win

By Jami Brinton, Reporter

University of Iowa Jacobson Entrepreneurship Academy participant Tyler Beers, 12, of Ainsworth tries to entice people to his team's lemonade stand Thursday, July 22, 2010 in downtown Iowa City. Students from the academy broke into eight teams to see which one could make the most money selling lemonade. The Jacobson Entrepreneurship Academy is a week-long day camp for Iowa students who have completed 7-9 grades and are interested in entrepreneurship and owning a business. (Photo by Brian Ray)

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By Becky Ogann

IOWA CITY, Iowa – Remember those summer days as a child, trying to sell lemonade to your neighbors and passers-by?

On Thursday, a group of middle school students participating in a University of Iowa’s entrepreneur class held a lemonade stand competition.

The goal was to sell as much lemonade as possible in one hour.

The eight teams teams positioned their stands throughout Iowa City’s pedestrian mall. They used various strategies like slashing prices, catchy phrases, and colorful menu boards to attract customers to their stand.

Hannah Grosvenor, an eighth grade student from Okaboji said her team – Pappajohn Sweets – came up with a novel idea to compete with the seven other lemonade stands: sell sugar free ice tea.

Grosvenor said it was a way to differentiate themselves from others and attract consumers who may be prefer that beverage for health reasons.

Fifteen minutes before their stand closed this morning, Pappajohn Sweets had sold about a half dozen drinks and a dozen cookies.

The team hoped to make enough money to pay back the money they borrowed from the university to buy their products. Grosvenor said this exercise taught her a lot about business management.

“It is easy and hard at the same time to start your own business,” she said. “If you have the money…and passion you’re able to start your own business.”

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