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She’s horsing around with a lemonade business

Hannah Gross, NLJ Correspondent

When school is out of session and the spring days turn into hot summer scorchers, it is not unusual to see kids selling cold, refreshing lemonade to earn some extra cash. 
That’s just what 8-year-old Kori Hartinger enjoyed doing in front of Skull Creek Studios and Boutique, owned by her mother Emily Hartinger, when it was formerly located on Main Street. 
But this summer, the mother-daughter duo decided to invest in something bigger and take the lemonade stand to the next level. The idea came when they were trying to come up with something to sell at the farmers market. 
Emily is always trying to think of something creative to do, and she wanted Kori to get involved to learn the valuable lessons of hard work, saving money and running a business.
“I’ve always been that type of person looking for something to do,” Emily said. “So, I wanted Kori to get on board with that entrepreneurship.” 
After searching on Pinterest for inspiration, Emily stumbled across small horse trailers converted into lemonade stands. After securing a  sponsorship from Newcastle Motors, they found the perfect one. 
Emily said the 1976 trailer was in pretty good shape, but admitted that the more they tore it apart, the more rust they found. They installed wood doors and flooring to give it a rustic flare and touched it up with a new paint job. 
“It was fun. Besides the paint, we did all the work ourselves,” Emily said. 
“I got a zebra stripe on my butt,” Kori said, from the wet paint. “And it was white pants.”
That’s how Gourmet Coolers was born. The new venture sells homemade lemonade with unique flavor twists created by homemade fruit syrups created from fresh fruits — without any preservatives. Some of the flavors include blueberry, raspberry, strawberry, peach and blackberry, as well as blackberry limeade and cherry lemon-limeade. Sometimes, they also sell cold coffee. 
“We pretty much sell out every time we set up,” Emily said. “It’s nice because I can make it when I have time and pop it in the freezer.” 
The lemonade business has been a teaching and learning moment for Kori, who wanted a new Nintendo Switch gaming system but didn’t have the money to buy one. The deal was she had to help with the remodeling, working the stand and pitching in with other odds and ends projects. She learned quickly that when she worked the stand alone, she made more money. 
“One time, I kicked my mom out. I get more tips,” Kori said, with a smile. “One time, someone gave me a $50 and said no change.” 
The money has been an incentive for the 8-year-old, but she also enjoys talking to other people. 
“Kori’s kind of a little social butterfly,” Emily said. 
Emily has also been able to have conversations with Kori about figuring out the profit after paying back the supplies. The money is currently going into her savings, and Kori hopes to someday purchase a car or go-cart. 
“Lots of kids these days don’t understand the importance of savings.  … I would like to teach Kori that through this,” Emily said. “Eventually, when she is older and we keep up with it, then she can go run it herself.”
In the meantime, Emily and Kori hope to continue running the lemonade stand together when they have spare time and look forward to seeing where the business venture goes. 


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