Sunday, July 22News That Matters

A 13-year-old entrepreneur takes 100 girls to the movies


“A Wrinkle in Time,” by Madeleine L’Engle, (Credit: Square Fish)

Asking a girl out to the movies isn’t easy for many guys, regardless of their age. But one 13-year-old entrepreneur came up with a way to get 100 girls to go with him. And it’s for a good cause.

Beau Shell is only 13 but he’s been running a successful mobile ice cream cart business — Lil’ Ice Cream Dude in Athens, Ga.–since the age of eight. Starting with a cart bought by his parents that was made up of a small freezer and attached to old bicycle wheels, Shell’s company has worked hundreds of events, parties, festivals and weddings, according to this profile of him on The Red & Black. Shell sometimes employs others to help out at these events and is the youngest member to belong to the Athens Chamber of Commerce.

Like any normal 13-year-old, he uses his profits to buy video games and toys. But he also gives back. Over the past five years, Shell has raised more than $15,000 for various charities and community organizations.

One of his passions is encouraging more girls to get into STEM — science, technology, engineering and math — careers. So with the help of a STEM advocate, Shell recently raised $5,000 to pay for 100 middle school girls to go and see “A Wrinkle In Time” the new sci-fi Disney movie starring Oprah Winfrey about a young girl named Meg and her little brother who travel through space in search of their long-lost father. The girls were handpicked by local teachers because of their interest in STEM and enjoyed a red carpet reception that included dinner and a goody bag.

“I hope they feel inspired just by seeing the movie,” Shell told local television station CBS46. “And seeing Meg because she’s a strong, smart, powerful, brave character and I hope that they can relate and get a positive vibe.”

One of those girls, he believes, could be the designer of a new iPhone, find a cure for cancer, help build a spacecraft or — more closer to home — come up with an awesome new type of ice cream. Now, that could be worth the price of a movie ticket.

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