JEFFERSON (KYTX) - Fresh, squeezed lemonade being sold by 9-year-old Joey Piro. He's trying to raise money for his father Paul who needs a heart transplant.
"He's the best." - Joey Piro, Father Needs a Heart Transplant
Doctors say Paul has less than 18 months to live if he doesn't get one. Joey and his family set up the lemonade stand at this church a week ago, but recently moved to the Jefferson Farmer's Market in front of First National Bank hoping to bring in more customers. Joey's mom Amy Piro says the bank's manager gave her permission to use the property.
Farmer's Market Director Myra Smith did not want to go on camera but told me over the phone that the family was asked to leave because they didn't have a permit and didn't get permission from the farmer's market.
"Apparently, we have some grinches here in Jefferson that don't like us to do fundraisers for a boy trying to raise funds for his daddy." - Amy Piro, Joey's Mom
According to the Texas Department of State Health Services, a Cottage Food Production License is required to sell anything at a farmer's market.
Piro says complaints from vendors, and area shop owners spurred the bank's manager to retract his permission. Piro claims it's because the lemonade was taking business away from others.
"We were disturbing businesses because we were yelling for people to come get lemonade. When you do a lemonade stand you can't stand and be quiet, you have to get people's attention."
Joey says being moved is a huge blow for his cause.
"Because we did good. I am very sad."
He has set up shop down the road at the intersection of Polk and Highway 49. So far, he has raised 600 dollars.
Donations can be made here.