Mallie Powell began selling her apple pies and lemonade on June 6 outside the home of her grandparents, Allen and Doris Crowe.
The young entrepreneur started selling her $1 pies and lemonade to raise money to send herself to the Stamps Baxter School of Music camp later this month in Nashville. Last year she did odd jobs for her relatives to help raise the money. This year she wanted to do it on her own.
Last Saturday, Mallie moved her pie stand to the city square to attract more business. That’s when the trouble started.
Rusty Williams, a Cave Spring police officer, arrived at the scene after he heard that someone was operating a fried pie stand on the square, which requires a business license.
“I went and checked it out, thinking that it was an adult not a child,” said Williams. “I told them that they would have to pack up, but after talking to Mrs. Powell I decided to go and ask the mayor about it first.”
“The officer was really nice about it,” said Mallie’s mother Judy Powell. “You could really tell that he hated to do it.”
Cave Spring Mayor Frank Scalf said Williams then came and talked to him about the little girl’s stand.
“I told him to just make sure that the adults did not participate in the selling of the pies,” said Scalf. “I’m not about to run off a little girl trying to sell pies and lemonade.”
Williams then went back and told Mrs. Powell she didn’t need a business license.
City Attorney Gene Richardson said the city ordinance prevents people from selling things on the square.
“That, of course, deals with businesses, not children,” Richardson said.
“We just ask that kids or organizations like the Boy Scouts get permission from City Hall so we have a record of who is out there,” said Richardson.
Just to be safe, Mallie and her grandfather went to City Hall on Monday and bought a business license for $50.
The stand now sits outside her grandparents’ house at 3 River St., where Mallie is also taking orders by phone.
The girl has already raised more than $500 of her $2,000 goal.
Mallie said it was important for her to make her own money and that she wanted to do all of this so that she could send herself to camp.
“I want to improve my skills on the piano, so I really want to go to this camp,” said Mallie.
Mallie already knows how to play several instruments and is very accomplished in sign language. She performed “God Bless the U.S.A.” in sign language this past Sunday at the Lindale Church of God.
She has also performed in plays with the Rome Little Theatre and said she hopes to become an actress