During the 45th annual Florida A&M University Harambee Festival, which took place at Cascades Park on Saturday Feb. 23, a mobile business known as “Oh! Lemonade Inc.,” sold approximately two 55-gallon drums of lemonade and a 30-gallon drum of tea.
Though this amount is enough to fill up more than a standard bathtub, creator and owner Dwayne Ash explained this was typical occurrence.
“It was actually one of our slower events,” Ash said.
Even with all of the festival’s commotion and stagnant lines for performances, various food and shop vendors, games and activities, it seemed like a vast number of the attendees were waiting in the 50-meter line for lemonade.
The yellow and green mobile restaurant, branded with an animated lemon with a family
friendly smile, was idle in the front row and ahead of most of the other vendors. The competition was scarce compared to other businesses at the festival, besides the seafood vendor neighboring it.
Ash, full-time owner of Premier Refinishing and “Oh! Lemonade Inc.,” first thought of the idea for “Oh! Lemonade Inc.,” seven years ago at a Mule Day Festival where he purchased lemonade that he believed taste like water.
Ash recalled the moment he decided to try out his own recipe.
“I went home that night, I drew up some plans and said ‘I could do better than them,’” Ash said. “From that point I wanted to provide a service of what I think is the perfect lemonade.”
Customers are clearly are satisfied with Ash’s recipe.
Each lemonade flavor made with a mix of fresh fruit, sugar and water. At events such as FAMU’s home games, the 55-gallon drum gets refilled about four times. And, though most events are a time to fellowship and relax, Ash chooses not to mix business with pleasure.
“Yeah, we are out here to enjoy the opportunity to be at these places, but also we are here to make money,” Ash said.
Imani Scott, an “Oh! Lemonade Inc.,” customer explained she loved variety of flavors offered.
“I originally stood in line for a regular lemonade,” Scott said. “But, [I] was not expecting that they would have different flavors, which is nice, and the lady who served me was really sweet.” Scott said.
The woman Scott referred is Abigal Jackson. Jackson, along with the other helpers, assistants, and employees, worked the station while Ash managed.
When asked why she continues to work for “Oh! Lemonade Inc.,” Jackson said customer interaction and offering a quality product are two of the main reasons.
“[I] love meeting new people, and the love we invest into our lemonade is received by our customer,” Jackson said. “It really just shows our kids the sky is the limit when your mind is made up; meaning any can become a business owner.”
Attending a wide array of events across the state of Florida and Georgia, Ash eventually hopes to expand to a permanent spot where he resides in Woodville, as well as continuing his lemonade concession.
For further information and where Oh! Lemonade Inc will be next, give them a call at 850-856-9471 or visit their Facebook page at: facebook.com/lemonsrus