PARMA, Ohio — A new store in Parma held its soft opening on Friday afternoon, and the new venture by two pint-sized barons of business had a line down the sidewalk. Hoping to capitalize off of the citywide yard sale scheduled for this weekend, two scouts have brought the free market to their front lawn, selling candy and snacks in an effort to raise money for their favorite place: The Cleveland Metroparks Zoo.
Outside a home on Lincoln Avenue on Parma’s North Side, Nathan Stevens and Cameron Lewis, both 6-years-old, have their neatly pressed Cub Scouts uniforms on. Their candy, meat sticks and other delectables are carefully organized on a pop-out table. Their cash register is ready. Then, Cameron asked his cousin, Nathan, a pressing question.
“What are you scared of?” Cameron said.
“I don’t know. Not much [sic] things,” Nathan replied.
“You would probably be scared if a tiger bited [sic] you,” Cameron fired back.
Well, that’s the banter between 6-year-olds. Their oftentimes hilarious back-and-forth is a staple in their relationship, Ashley Stevens, Nathan’s mother, said.
“They are [inseparable],” Stevens said. “It’s like they’re twins but they’re actually cousins.”
The two boys are part of Cub Scout Pack 216 and Stevens is the den leader. Her oldest son was also part of Pack 216 and is currently in the process of becoming an Eagle Scout. Like him, Cameron and Nathan also wanted to join.
“A big part of scouting is learning how to be a good person and giving back to the community,” Stevens said. “They were inspired by other scouts to come up with [the fundraiser]. They wanted to sell candy and water to the zoo because that’s one of our favorite places to go.”
When their makeshift shop first opened Friday afternoon, their first customer, Chris Kuhar, the executive director of the Cleveland Metroparks Zoo, was especially appreciative.
“I hear you’re going to try to raise some money for the cub scouts and the zoo. Is that true?” Kuhar said to the two boys. “Well, I work for the zoo, so we’re really thankful that you’re doing that. It’s awesome. It’s pretty awesome that you guys are helping out the zoo. We really appreciate it. Thank you.”
Kuhar, along with Parma City Councilwoman Kristin Saban, made sure to not only snag some snacks but also make a donation as well.
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