Gurlie’s Lemonade is a family affair

Gurlie’s Lemonade Stand. Photo courtesy Marquis Williams

When life gave these two brothers –  Marquis Williams and Demetrius Murray – lemons, they made lemonade. Gurlie’s Lemonade Stand, to be exact.

Located at 1105 W. Tharpe St., near Old Bainbridge Road, it is a thriving business.

This May, Williams and Murray were thinking of different ways they could make money. They saved about $300 from their clothing business RattlerAapparel, which brings in more income during fall and spring. The brothers needed a way to make more money during the summer.

They thought, ‘What about selling Grandma’s lemonade?’

The Gurlie’s lemonade brand came from the brothers’ grandmother, Gurlie Wells, and her famous lemonade recipe. When she passed away, she left them a written copy of the recipe that was sitting in the back of a closet.

“The lemonade is really good, you wouldn’t expect two guys to be making lemonade that tastes this great,” said customer Kennethia Daniels.

Having the idea was just the first of many steps in creating a beverage company. They started by making the lemonade and trying it out to see if it would sell, then they took their safe serve test, secured an LLC license as a beverage company, obtained their business and vendors licenses, went through the department of health and got their general liability insurance.

They achieved all of this during the last five months.

“The biggest challenge was preparing ourselves mentally to stick through it,” said Murray. “The sun and judgmental looks was the most difficult part of our journey.”

The lemonade stand is open from noon to 6 p.m. Monday-Saturday. Each cup is $3 and each gallon is $10. Their catering fee is $50 per 100-125 cups and they have catered to FAMU and multiple apartments in Tallahassee.

Gurlie’s lemonade has five employees, each making $10 an hour and working about 40 hours a week. You can purchase your lemonade by pulling into the lemonade stand location or have it served to you while you’re waiting in your car at the light. If you think no cash equals no lemonade, think again. They accept Cash-app too.

“The process of creating a business and being able to employee others, was my favorite part of starting this business,” said Williams.

Gurlie’s lemonade started as a gallon full of homemade lemonade on a table in front of the Marathon gas station on Tharpe Street. Now they have completely upgraded to a green lemonade stand with a logo on it.

“Creating the lemonade stand made it more official, in the eyes of the world,” said Murray, “it made them takes us more serious and it increased sales.”

The brothers also created a motto to back their business and any businesses their employees want to start called “1-800 Hustler.” The movement means that, “Hard work still works,” said Murray. They apply the movement to everything they do to keep themselves motivated and their businesses growing.

The brothers plan to secure a second location in Tallahassee for their lemonade stand.