Thief Steals Money From Kids Lemonade Stand, First Responders Step Up In An Amazing Way

 August 7, 2021

Summer and kids with lemonade stands go hand in hand. Unfortunately for one group of would-be entrepreneurs a thief dashed their hopes for making some extra dollars.

Summertime Lemonade

In Iowa, Kately and Elias Smidt, 9 year old twins, dreamed of setting up their own lemonade stand. They finally got the chance and their parents helped set up a table.

Their mom, Karen Smidt said the twins had free lemonade, but their patrons could leave them a tip. After a couple of hours there was between $50-$100 in the jar. She went inside to make the kids some more lemonade. While mom Karen was inside another customer came by to get some lemonade.

"It was just like this split-second situation where all of a sudden, this car drove up and my daughter asked her if she wanted lemonade, and she said yes. And so, Katelyn was ready to serve her lemonade, and she grabbed the tip jar and got in the car and squealed off."

Karen Smidt

The kids were heartbroken. Smidt said she "had a pit in (her) stomach" when her son told her about the incident. But the kiddos went continued with the stand through the afternoon, in tears.

A neighbors told Karen to report the incident to the Ames police department. The department sent Officer Rohland out to the stand. Smidt said, "She was absolutely phenomenal with Katelyn."

Coming Out For the Kids

Smidt said she "literally couldn't have even dreamed up," what happened next. First responders from throughout the area came by the kids lemonade stand.

Ames Police Department, Ames Fire Department, Story County Sheriff's Office and even the Iowa State University Police Department came by for a cup of lemonade from the twins stand.

"The look on my kid's faces was ... you just can't even describe it.They were just so excited because they had so much lemonade to serve."

Karen Smidt

Giving Back To The Officers

In Ames, there is an annual holiday event where the Ames Police Foundation pairs an officer and a child together to shop at Target. The Smidt's decided to give all proceeds to that cause.

Smidt said, "Our experience has been amazing, and we really just want it to be multiplied. We want more people to have that same experience with cops."

The kids have raised $2400 for the cause and are running the lemonade stand for another day.

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12 comments on “Thief Steals Money From Kids Lemonade Stand, First Responders Step Up In An Amazing Way”

  1. Good can prevail and karma will get the bad guys in the end. What these kids and the town learned from these officers is worth more than the money the thief took. And who knows the thief my yet be caught.

  2. I hope the Thieves get a massive KARMA attack, Awesome job that these girls are doing, helping others when you can that have less is what life is about so often

  3. Of course they go free we can't be arresting people for crimes.....that's in humane.!!!! Lets hope their car meets a big oak tree soon.

    1. Are you really so ignorant that you think the street cop would not go on a call if one came in? It is a small town.

  4. I am glad that these kids now realize that Police Officers are really the good guys along with the firefighters and so many other folks in their community. The woman that stole their money will end up being caught and will live in hell because of it.

  5. Very clever of the kids to give their lemonade for free and just accept tips. That way they can get around any busybodies that might want to have them busted for not having a vendor's license. Unfortunately, there are plenty of nosy Mrs. Kravitz types like that. They are almost as bad as the lowlifes that robbed the kids. Anyway, I'm glad the officers stepped in and helped them. Heartwarming story.

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