Lemonade stands have been the staple of entrepreneurship in the United States for generations. Children seeking to raise cash for a school fundraiser, charitable organization or additional spending money would usually launch a lemonade stand and charge customers about a nickel or a dime for a cup.
Although the government has begun to crack down on lemonade stands all over the country, households are persevering and moving ahead with their plans to offer consumers a refreshing product – in innovative ways.
This past month, a photo went viral on Reddit after a user shared an image of a traditional cookies and lemonade stand operated by two little girls in San Francisco. Of course, it wasn’t just any ordinary kiosk: the entrepreneurs accepted bitcoins as a method of payment.
With the assistance of their mother, Holly, who is a tech expert that established an online wallet for her two children, they had a QR code installed on the roof of their stand. The mother immediately named the photo “Milk Road,” a small jab at the online illegal drug marketplace called Silk Road, and launched a blog of the same name.
The little girls haven’t raised a lot of bitcoins – only two bitcoin cookie sales have been made so far (at the time of this writing). A few hundred dollars have been raised, though, for Save Japan Dolphins, a charity that the two young girls chose.
No, this isn’t a nefarious plot to generate funds akin to the college football fan who received $20,000 after waving a sign on ESPN that stated “Hi Mom, Send Bitcoin.” Instead, the purpose of the lemonade stand was to educate the children.
The whole concept began when Holly had inquired to her teacher about adding the virtual currency to the curriculum. After her requests were ignored by the school, she decided to teach her own children the ideas of commerce, money and digital currencies.
“The kids just know it’s an online currency,” Holly told Forbes in an interview. “They don’t get why it’s special. They’re just learning about commerce. They know it’s a means of exchange. They know they can accept this money and mommy can go home and check the wallet.”
Holly wants her children to understand the importance of bitcoin and to be prepared for the potential global changes that the digital currency could incite. She believes bitcoin could transform credit card and money systems by new technologies similar to bitcoin.
“Kids can’t take in the complexity of the world all at once, and I’m not so good at explaining it. What I am good at is showing them the things that inspire me,” she said. “With experience and exposure I think one day the light bulbs will go on, and they will wiser than I am, at a far younger age.”
By the time the kids grow up will one bitcoin be valued in the thousands or it will be worth as much as the two cookies are sold for at the girls’ stand?
Perhaps bitcoiners will send some digital currency their way; Holly and her children are accepting online donations in bitcoin as well.