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Caroline Murray/Recorder staff Amsterdam siblings Mason and Alexa Gieseler are shown Wednesday at their house on Locust Avenue, holding the sign they had hanging in front of their lemonade stand.

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Enterprising young children pitch into help local farm get back on its feet

Thursday, August 07, 2014 - Updated: 10:21 AM

By CAROLINE MURRAY

caroline.murray@recordernews.com

When life hands you lemons -- set up a lemonade stand.

At least that is what William B. Tecler Arts in Education Magnet School students Mason and Alexa Gieseler did when they heard about the Korona Dairy fire, which devastated the Perth farm last month.

Eight-year-old Mason and 6-year-old Alexa, who were upset about the fire and the loss of cattle, decided to raise money by opening a lemonade stand.

For 50 cents a cup and 25 cents a cookie, the duo raised a total of $100 last Saturday and donated all their proceeds to farm owner Stanley Korona.

"Well, it was some surprise," Korona said. "I met with them the other day ... they were real nice kids."

Both Mason and Alexa attend classes at the William B. Tecler Arts in Education Magnet School.

This past school year, Mason Gieseler had Korona's granddaughter, Mandy Swarnowicz, as his third-grade reading teacher.

Mason said he wanted to help his teacher. Mason's mother, Lynn, said her children were also emotional when they heard about the fate of many of the young cows the evening of the fire.

His sister joined in on the effort as well to "help him get cows and rebuild the farm."

Swarnowicz said she found out about her students' fundraiser on Facebook. Mom Lynn Gieseler was holding a garage sale the same day, and posted a picture of her kids' lemonade sale on the site. Swarnowicz said Tecler parents from all over came to donate and have some lemonade.

"The kids did this so they could help," Swarnowicz said.

Swarnowicz said her grandfather does not show emotion, but he was overjoyed by the children's efforts.

"He gave me a hug and a hive five," Mason said.

Korona invited them to the farm once it is up and running again, to visit with all the livestock.

The children admitted they never have seen a live cow before, and were excited about the invitation.

At this weekend's village-wide garage sale in Hagaman, both Mason and Alexa will set up another lemonade stand.

They hope to make even more money this time around, and will donate it all to Korona.

"We will have to buy more cookies and lemonade," Alexa said to her mom.

     

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