By Kirsten Corssen
Nothing better than walking down the dock on a hot day to find an adorable group of children selling some cold lemonade. As you pull out a dollar and sip that delicious lemonade, you can’t help but appreciate the things that make Fire Island unique, and these children setting up shop on the side of the dock is one of them.
If you know Atlantique, you know what I’m talking about. If you grew up here, like I did, I am sure at one point you had a shop of your own. I myself kept a jewelry shop as a little girl that I would set up right near the public bathrooms. My sister and my two best friends would start planning way before summer. Throughout the winter, even on snow days, we would start making our jewelry. We sold bracelets, necklaces, anklets, sunglasses chains, and many unique beaded creations. We had a picnic basket for our supplies, and an anchor-shaped table where we would set up shop.
It was one of the first pop-up shops, long before the term was coined, because it would be set up wherever we went as we traveled on our two-week boat vacation. You could find our creations out in Montauk, Block Island and even Rhode Island. At the end of every season we would use the money we made on food. It was totally worth all the work to get some yummy ice cream, and even more rewarding because we made the money ourselves. This was the stuff that created many fond memories for me and my friends.
Now as an adult, I wanted to learn about someone else’s dock shop story. What are kids selling on the Atlantique docks today? I met Angelina, Ava, and Molly – three adorable girls selling a variety of homemade products. These young entrepreneurs set up their business plan well before summer got started. They were Facetiming trying to come up with good products to sell that would catch the beach goer’s attention.
“At first we were going to sell lemonade, but after we discussed it and realized that we could be competing with the Shack’s business, we changed our plans,” said Ava. After ruling out lemonade they went in a different direction. Molly came up with the idea to make homemade soups to sell. Never have I seen homemade soups being sold on the dock before. Not only was this an original idea but they really did smell awesome. After picking the product they named their business The Beach Bananas.
These girls did not stop at soup. In their stand I also found handcrafted bracelets, necklaces, and painted signs. Their talents went way beyond painted shells! Their products were appealing because you could tell they were made with care.
Beach Bananas is one of the many shops you will see set up on the docks this summer. The tradition of little kids trying to make ice cream money lives on.