When life gives you lemons, you make a lemonade stand! That’s what twins Katelyn and Elias Smidt from Ames, Iowa decided to do this summer. Unfortunately, life gave them some pretty sour lemons when someone decided to steal from their homemade stand.


This past Monday, the twins were running their lemonade stand in Ames and making decent headway in terms of income. While the lemonade was free, the kids were making excellent tips totaling around $100. However, a woman reportedly stopped her car as she was driving by, jumped out, stole their tip jar and then drove away. The family reported this incident to the police right away and the response they got in return is truly heartwarming.

The following day, four different law enforcement agencies showed up to help the kids make back the money that was stolen from them. First responders from the Ames Police and Fire Departments as well as the Iowa State University Police Department and the Story County Sheriff’s Office all stopped by for a nice refreshing glass of lemonade.

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The Smidt family says that they have raised a whopping $750 from all the law enforcement contributions and plan to donate it all to the Shop with a Cop program. The program was created to foster positive relationships between the youth and police officers and, funded entirely by donations from the community, kids are given the opportunity to shop for Christmas presents alongside an officer from the area.

Between tips made and donations received to their mom Karen’s Venmo, the kids have raised nearly $2,500. That will cover a lot of Christmas shopping! Karen says that she hopes her kids will understand that “there’s always bad in the world, but the amount of good always outweighs the bad.”

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