Community Gem: Lemonade stand by Centerville student helps area pets

Grant Oldham
Caption
Grant Oldham

CENTERVILLE — When Grant Oldham was younger, he was excited to see all the cats at the Humane Society of Greater Dayton, brushing their fur and visiting the kittens.

His mom worked there at the time and introduced him to the Humane Society’s efforts to help animals. Grant soon took that interest a step further, with an annual lemonade stand that has raised more than $3,200 since he began it in 2013 as a 7-year-old.

“We’ve been raising more money each year,” said Grant, now 15, who collected $866 with the stand on a single day in August.

After the lemonade is poured out and the donations pour in, Grant personally takes the money he has raised to the Humane Society, where two of his own cats – Cairo and Sylvester – were adopted. A dog, Marshall, was added to the family last year.

The Centerville High School sophomore offers lemonade for 50 cents per cup, but many customers pay $5 or $10. Occasionally he has even been given a $100 bill.

The lemonade stand is advertised with flyers, signs and on social media, but it also has become well known in his Washington Township community, and neighbors regularly ask when it will be held each year.

When Grant first started the stand years ago, he could barely lift the pitcher without making a mess, said his father, Brad Oldham. Now his son oversees it all, and the amount that Grant has collected has multiplied from that first year when he received about $100.

Oldham, who nominated Grant as a Dayton Daily News Community Gem, is proud that his son has stuck with the stand for so long, giving back to the community. The stand reminds others that the Humane Society has animals that are ready to be adopted while also helping with the organization’s financial demands.

“It’s good just to raise awareness of the needs of the Humane Society,” Oldham said.