LemonAid stands open next weekend to benefit CHKD

Published 7:54 pm Saturday, July 9, 2011

Families, businesses and community organizations around the area will participate in a region-wide fundraiser to raise money for pediatric cancer patients next weekend.

On July 15, 16 and 17, throughout Suffolk and the rest of Hampton Roads, groups will set up lemonade stands as part of Anthem LemonAid, a program that benefits Children’s Miracle Network hospitals across the country.

Funds raised across Hampton Roads will go directly to the cancer program at the Children’s Hospital of The King’s Daughters. This is the third year the hospital has participated in LemonAid.

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Lisa Davenport, the director of corporate relations and special events for CHKD, said one of her favorite things about the program is that it is a great fundraiser for parents to teach their children the importance of helping others.

She said one mother told her she has sponsored a lemonade stand with her family for the past two years to teach her kids to help other children who aren’t as fortunate as they are.

“The absolute best thing about this program is that it is literally kids helping kids,” she said.

For the weekend program, groups sign up to sponsor stands for a certain time slot in front of local businesses, such as Panera and Farm Fresh. They can also sign up to have a stand at locations of their own choosing.

Davenport said the program attracts all kinds of participants, such as church youth groups, small businesses, families and apartment communities.

“About anybody you can think of, we’ve seen them do it,” she said.

Panera Bread on College Drive will have organizations with LemonAid stands in front of the restaurant throughout the weekend.

Panera Bread restaurants in Hampton Roads are partners with CHKD and sponsor several fundraisers for the hospital throughout the year, said regional marketing director Cori Lintner.

Lintner said last year, several groups took it upon themselves to spruce up their lemonade stands with decorations.

“It’s really fun, and (people) get really into it,” she said.

She added the volunteers usually have a theme that ties in with their organization.

In addition to Panera, other businesses that will feature LemonAid stands July 15 through 17 include the Farm Fresh stores on Bridge Road and North Main Street and the Walmart stores on College Drive and North Main Street.

Also, the Suffolk Elks Lodge is sponsoring a stand at its building at 329 W. Constance Road July 17 from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. The Elks Lodge stand will also feature baked goods.

Davenport encourages everyone who sees kids running LemonAid stands to stop and make a donation because it does more than help the patients at CHKD.

“I do think out of all the events that we work with and work on, this one is a wonderful thing because not only are you helping kids at the hospital, you are encouraging kids to help others,” she said.

For more information and locations, visit www.childrensmiraclenetwork.net/index.php/lemonaid/.