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Summer Businesses


Today's Snack: What else - a tall glass of lemonade and a hot dog, two things that a lot of kids started off their business careers by selling in the summertime!





Notebook, scratch paper and pen or pencil



Here are some summer business ideas that you can brainstorm and develop:


Lemonade stand - see #6, Everybody's Favorite First: Lemonade Stand


Mobile snack bar - Sell ice-cold bottled water and sports drinks and/or popsicles in a cooler with visors, cheap sunglasses and battery-powered fans - try selling these items at a public beach, baseball practice field, or a busy street corner near a popular summertime destination, such as an amusement park. You will need a cash box to make change. Be sure to check requirements for permits from the city or state if you sell on public property, such as a park or sidewalk.


Lawn and yard care -- Drive through neighborhoods looking for yards that need mowing and leave a flyer. You will need sturdy shoes, workgloves and safety glasses. Use your own mower or use theirs and bring your own gas, so you'll need a special gas can to transport it. Work out with the owner whether you are supposed to edge the pavement, blow the clippings back onto the lawn, and provide other yard care services for an extra fee, such as cleaning up leaves and brush, trimming hedges, digging up dandelions, etc. You could bring a pooper-scooper if they have a dog and offer that as part of your service. Offer one-time mowing service only or try to get them on a regular, weekly contract. See:


Window washing - This is best to do in teams so that one of you washes the outside and one washes the inside. You can make your own organic window cleaning solution to save on your costs. Arrange a price for most windows and offer a discount for smaller ones. You might specialize in ground-floor glass only, so that you don't take risks on high ladders. However, bringing a stepstool with you is a good move.


House sitting - Another task that might be safest in pairs. You basically go into the customer's empty house while they are away on vacation, or during the workday if you're off school for the summer, and water plants, check the house for leaks and problems, and bring in the mail and newspaper. You can ask if there are house-cleaning tasks they might want done while they're gone, for an extra fee, such as dusting all the baseboards and blinds, scrubbing the bathrooms or vacuuming.


Mobile car detailing - You come to their home or office and wash their car. You'll need a water source and hose (or bring your own hose), a portable vacuum, trash bag, a bucket, sponges, chamois, auto detergent, a stepstool for taller vehicles, and cleaning supplies for inside and out.


Summer nanny / babysitter -- For working parents of school-age kids, it would be a Godsend if you and maybe a friend would recruit the kids from two or three families, and take care of the kids during the day in one or more of their homes. Take a baby-sitting or first aid class at the local Red Cross or YMCA to get more qualified. You can lead the kids on all kinds of creative and enriching activities, including reading, writing, math practice, gardening, outdoor play, nature exploration and all kinds of other wholesome activities that are a lot better for the kids than staying inside staring at electronics all day.


Tutoring -- Some kids need help catching up on one or two subjects, and summer is the perfect time to do it. Many parents put their kids in summer classes on a fun topic like science, drama, or creative writing. You can offer short courses on things you can do, such as making crafts, playing piano, singing, or whatever you like. You can tutor individual kids, or put together a group workshop or week-long class. You can rent a room in the local library, community fitness center or a church if you don't want to do this in your own home.


By Susan Darst Williams Business 05 2014

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