READY, SET, SELL
Thayer Allyson Gowdy
Assign guests to wrap brownies and blondies in cellophane and make lemonade. An adult may want to use a juicer to speed the process, but let each child squeeze a few lemons and stir in the sugar. A punch bowl works well for mixing big batches, and the finished lemonade can be transferred to plastic pitchers as needed. Place fruit syrups in plastic squeeze bottles to be added to cups of lemonade at customers' request.
Build excitement by arranging for a few patrons -- parents and friends of the party guests -- to stop by just as the stand opens. For a festive touch, rent a helium tank from a party store and have an adult blow up a balloon and write the name of each patron on the side with a marker. Display balloons at the stand to show off who has donated to charity, or let kid customers take them home.
Keep boredom at bay by rotating responsibilities: pouring lemonade, adding squirts of flavored syrup, handing out brownies, and serving as the banker. Kids can work in shifts, with time off to enjoy a snack themselves. After a selling period of 60 to 90 minutes, count the proceeds and let every child sign a donation letter (prepared in advance) that will be sent to the chosen charity. Guests can go home with extra balloons, leftover brownies, and a feeling of pride at helping out a good cause. What a special way to celebrate the summer!