So while I typically am horrible about re-capping my weekends, I couldn’t wait to share with everyone the eventful fun that took place at the Jazz Castle these past few days!
National Lemonade Day’s 10th Anniversary took place – an annual event inspired by Alex’s Lemonade Stand Foundation. This foundation began 10 years ago when Alex, at the age of four, opened her first Lemonade stand to help find a cure for all childhood cancers, including her own. Since then, over 20,000 Alex’s Lemonade Stands have popped up around the country and National Lemonade Days have helped to support – in unity – Alex’s dream of finding a cure. With each and every year becoming bigger and better than the last, what once started in Alex’s front yard has spread across a nation and now annually raises over 1 Million Dollars in support of funding research for all forms of childhood cancer! This year the event – since it began, has now surpassed 80 Million Dollars in funding. . . . Incredible!
As a young girl, I myself helped in efforts to raise money for a local girl with Neuroblastoma, one of the more common forms of childhood cancer. Amber was her name and she attended my elementary school. At the time, I was 11 years old. I worked for the local paper and wrote a weekly column under the “Teen Writers” section. I thought I could help by dedicating an article to a fundraiser that my family and friends had thought up and much to our surprise the local support was astounding! We raised over $27,000 in only a few short months, raffled a brand new truck and even attracted the attention of our local news and radio. Amber and her family, as my own, were overwhelmed with the outpouring of affection and felt incredibly blessed.
While Amber gracefully passed a short while after at the age of 6, she left my family and our community with heavy hearts, but also with hope. Amber’s funeral was absolutely beautiful and the hundreds of people that attended let go of so many balloons skyward that you swore the sky was left colored for days. It was an incredibly tough experience to go through at a young age and while I can only imagine the hurt and pain her parents endured (as I myself am now a mother), It’s always left a huge impact on me personally. Childhood cancer isn’t fair. It’s unbearable and it’s unimaginable. While I’ve spent a better part of my life dedicating my time to a variety of fundraisers, charities and reputable causes; childhood cancer is still the most meaningful to me. While I know that a cure isn’t quite yet in our reach, I’m happy to take part in what little I can do.
With all that being said, it brings me to this weekend and the unbelievable experience I got to share and pass along to my daughter. We began last week by building her lemonade stand. With the help of grandma (my mom) we spent a wonderful afternoon buying supplies, constructing and painting what was soon to be her very own Lemonade Stand! (A blog post will be coming later this week with a “DIY – How To Build Your Own Lemonade Stand. – Stay tuned!) Once finished, we snapped some photos and put it aside for what was soon to be an exciting weekend of instilling in my daughter the value of giving back. *We even dedicated our donation page to Amber.
Saturday afternoon, we busted out the supplies, baked some cookies and stirred up some lemons for what was sure to be a fun-filled weekend. We spent the better part of Saturday and Sunday afternoon taking to the streets while also sharing our event with our friends and family in the social stratosphere. We had a goal to raise $150 in this little amount of time. . . . .Overall it was an incredibly successful endeavor!
So all in all we learned some incredibly valuable lessons, laughed a lot, and had some overly generous customers! Paige even reached her goal of $150 and then some. . . . All together she helped to fund over 3 hours of research dedicated to finding a cure for Neuroblastoma! It was an excellent experience and I’m such a proud mommy!
Also: If you feel so inclined to make a donation, Paige’s Online Stand will be open until June 15th and you can do so HERE! Any little amount helps, #OneCupAtATime. Oh, and we thank you in advance! We were incredibly blessed to take part in something so small, yet so worthwhile and can’t wait to participate again next year! ♥
If you would like to learn more about ALSF – Alex’s Lemonade Stand Foundation or how to get involved, please visit: www.alexslemonade.org! They host hundreds of events annually and make sure that you take part in next year’s Annual Lemonade Days to #Mix.Pour.FindACure.
For other news related to ALSF check out these great stories:
- Alex’s mom, Liz Scott and hero Bridget Smith visited “The Today Show” to kick off the weekend. Watch the video.
- Surprise! Nobody knew that Jon Bon Jovi was going to visit hero Mario Carpino’s stand on Saturday, June 7. See the photos.
- “NBC Nightly News” ran a story wrapping up the weekend on Sunday, June 8. Watch the video.