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Community rallies behind 8-year-old Gladstone boy's lemonade stand

Posted at 10:07 PM, Jul 03, 2018
and last updated 2018-07-03 23:16:41-04

KANSAS CITY, Mo. — For his birthday, all Jacob Martin wanted was a lemonade stand.

So when his sister surprised him with the gift, the eight-year-old set it up in his front yard — selling one cup of lemonade for 50 cents.

"The secret is the lemons. We squeeze them, that’s the secret to lemonade," he told 41 Action News.

His stand was doing well until last Friday when two adults started questioning Martin about having a permit.

"This guy came up to me and said, 'Do you have a permit?' And I thought, ‘What? What’s going on?'” he said.

According to Martin’s mom, Gina, the conversation quickly escalated. She asked Jacob to go inside while the two adults continued to yell at her.

“I was flabbergasted, dumbfounded. You know, you’re standing there with your mouth agape,” she said.

After the confrontation, Gina posted about the experience on Facebook. Less than 24 hours later, Sheriff Deputies were on her front lawn — but not to write a citation.

Instead, the law enforcement officers were joined by firefighters and EMS. All in front of her house to support her son.

“It’s one of the best lemonades I’ve ever had. Tastes great,” said Kansas City firefighter Darnell Kohler.

Gina said the support of the community since the confrontation has motivated and inspired her son.

She hopes other adults will support similar children who have stands in front of their homes for fun.

“I will look back on that day and I will appreciate everything they have done,” she said. “It will just be a great memory from me and I know he’ll remember it for a long, long time.”