Second grader’s lemonade stand raises thousands of dollars for Fairfield school

With the help of a lemonade stand and a big inflatable dinosaur, a Fairfield Schools’ second grader recently continued his entrepreneurial, summer tradition of raising thousands of dollars for his school and classmates.

Fairfield North Elementary student Cayden Cummings raised more than $2,400 for his school during his one-day but highly advertised opening of his neighborhood lemonade stand.

It was the third consecutive summer Cummings has turned his driveway stand into a charitable money-maker that has paid for some new playground equipment for his Fairfield Twp. school.

The big-hearted boy has now raised about $7,000 for his school since 2020, when the idea for the business first occurred during his kindergarten year, said his mother Alayna Cummings.

“We were school supply shopping and he overheard a mother telling her children they can’t afford to get that. That was hard for him to understand, you know with him being so young.” said Cummings.

Soon after, her boy was watching some YouTube videos fundraising for various causes and “in his little mind he thought ‘I could do that too.’”

“And this is what it has turned into,” she said, referring to the single-day lemonade charitable event that attracts hundreds of patrons – many of them gladly over-paying for their beverage cup – including Fairfield Twp. police officers and firefighters who stop by and Fairfield Schools Superintendent Billy Smith.

The now-annual tradition, which from year one has featured a large, inflatable dinosaur to help grab passerby’s attention, is further hyped beforehand on social media, adding to even more customers, said Cummings.

Among the boy’s regular customers is also one of his biggest fans, Denise Hayes, principal of his elementary school.

“I just think he is a great role model,” said Hayes, who recently posed for a photo with the boy as both sat on the new playground equipment his profits paid for.

“He is selfless and he puts others’ needs before his own,” she said.

She described Cummings as an earnest and quiet student.

“But you can tell he is a mover and shaker even though he might be one of those kids that may be in the background.”

What the school will do with Cummings’ latest donation of $2,400 is still being decided, said Hayes, but she added “we definitely want to impact as many students as we can” with his gift.

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