PIEDMONT — Wyatt Dennis and his family have had quite a ride the past two weeks.
The 8-year-old Piedmont boy’s free lemonade stand was a must-stop destination for many attending this year’s 81st Sturgis Motorcycle Rally.
The idea for a lemonade stand surfaced when the Dennis family came to look at a house along Sturgis Road near the Tilford exit on Interstate 90 a couple years ago.
Wyatt realized how much Rally traffic traveled the road and the nearby interstate.
So, in 2019, Wyatt operated a lemonade stand out at the end of their driveway so that he could earn money to buy a rocket-ship Lego set. He earned that money and much more.
This year, the free lemonade stand earnings skyrocketed thanks to thousands of shares on social media and even national news coverage of his efforts.
Wyatt and his family report that he has $31,394.50 to donate to St. Jude’s Children’s Research Hospital.
Wyatt’s initial plan was to put 50% of what he earned at the free lemonade stand toward his college fund, 30% to St. Jude’s and 20% to buy a dirt bike. But, the Black Hills Riders group came together and gifted a dirt bike for Wyatt because they were so inspired by his efforts.
Because of that donation, Wyatt upped the amount he donated to St. Jude’s. For all his hard work and the support of those coming to the area for the Sturgis Motorcycle Rally, Wyatt brought in more than $60,000 total.
“I want to thank all the people for coming out and seeing me day after day and taking time out of your day to come see me and donate,” Wyatt said. “I hope to see everyone again next year.”
Wyatt’s mom, Robin, said the success of Wyatt’s Lemonade Stand would not have been possible without everyone sharing, stopping, and donating.
“He dreams big, so look out because we are sure his goal for 2022 will be even bigger than this year,” she said.
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