Jack Laughlin helped his mom Thursday morning put ice into the blue cooler holding three quarts of lemonade.
How much ice did he use?
“Just a lot,” the five-year-old said later as he gave a visitor a quenching cup of lemonade.
Jack joined his brother, William, 3, and their cousins, Victoria, 6, Ella, 4 and Brady, 2, Hassels to mann their lemonade stand in Huntley’s Southwind subdivision. Jack’s little sister, Anna, seven-months-old, was taking a nap.
The Laughlin and Hassels families had one of the 13 lemonade stands that popped up across the village this week as part of a unique fundraiser for the Huntley Area Public Library’s summer reading program.
Laura Laughlin and her twin sister, Stacey Hassels came up with the idea three years ago and it has grown into a weeklong event.
Leigh Ann Porche, library spokeswoman, said families set up the lemonade stand then donate the proceeds to the library.
The ingredients are basic: sugar, lemon, water, lemonade powder, Victoria Hassels said. “You can have as much lemon” as you want, she said. But it does take some skill to create the perfect blend between sweet and sour, Laura Laughlin said.
“Oh, this is good,” said Mary Walz, a neighbor who came out for a glass of lemonade. She brought her three-week-old baby, Chloe, out for a few minutes.
Walz said it’s the lemonade stand is a great fundraiser and she wanted to support the families and the library.
Jack and his cousins were ready to grab a glass and pour out the lemonade as soon as customers, like neighborhood babysitters Jen and Jess Tito, approached. The girls were impressed with the service.
Even little William learned how to operate the spout on the cooler although seemed to like drinking the inventory himself. William, Brady and Jack took frequent breaks to play on the front lawn.
Victoria and Ella, though, stuck close to the stand, decorated with homemade signs as well as fancier signs the family bought at Target. Victoria, who staked out a chair in the shade where a slight breeze blew, supervised her younger sister at times.
Ella said she likes the library, especially the games. Earlier in the week, the library hosted a mid-summer celebration for its summer reading program with all types of games. Ella’s favorites were the bubble gum blow and the apple stacking, she said. She also likes being able to rent DVDs; her favorite is one about the Tooth Fairy.
Stacey said the library offers lots of programs throughout the year for children so the families want to give as much support as possible.
“We absolutely love our Huntley library,” she said.
There will be more lemonade stands open this afternoon and Saturday. The library is not giving out the exact addresses for the safety of children.