With the unofficial first summer weekend behind us, you can start to feel the change in the air. The grass is green, the smell of the BBQ surrounds us, and the good ol’ neighborhood lemonade stand is open for business. With our first ‘normal’ summer in front of us since we moved to Westwood, I didn’t realize how many of these small businesses were around. All I have to say is that the lemonade is good, but inflation is clearly influencing this modest sector of the food & beverage industry…

It all started on a beautiful Friday afternoon when my 2 ½ year old daughter Natalie and I headed out to go to the playground down the street. As we were walking, we noticed a group of young kids with a few coolers and signs. I thought nothing of it at first but as we got closer it clicked. They were setting up a lemonade stand. Their target market was well-established… suckers like me!

As we approached, Natalie turned to me, looking with her big brown eyes, and asked “Daddy, can I have a lemonade please.” I did what anyone would do in the situation, I asked if the kids took Venmo for payment. After their blank stare I reached into my pocket not knowing what cash I had in my wallet. Lucky for them, I only had a $20 bill. I wasn’t ready to pay Fenway Park prices for the lemonade until I realized we were one of the first customers. They did have some change, but not much.  As I complained about inflation and the kids having no idea what I was talking about… I turned around to see that Natalie was already sitting on the bench enjoying her cool lemonade beverage.

Was it worth the $10? Of course, it was. But did I learn my lesson to always have cash on me in small dollar denominations? Yes, I did.

The only reason I gave them a 1-star review on Yelp was that on the way out (because we had to get another lemonade to-go for Mom), they charged me again! Jeez… what kind of customer service is that!?

Don’t forget to get that lemonade this summer and tip heavily.

Until next time….

By Alex Weiss CFP® President & Wealth Manager Read More