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POPCORN, LEMONADE, & TATTOOS The Kesslers

“You have to find a niche for your business… You have to come up with an idea, and terrible ideas are the best ones!” says Mr. Ross, a substitute teacher at WHS, jokingly. But one can tell that he is serious. He says that when you tell someone about your idea, they’ll hate it even if it’s great because they’re upset they didn’t think of it first. This is his opinion of how you should begin to start a business.

Many of you may or may not know Mr. Kessler. But if you ever take the time to get to know any of your substitutes, you might find out that they’re more interesting than you ever thought they could be. Take Mr. Kessler, for example. He’s an entrepreneur during his spare time. Mr. Kessler said that from youth he knew he would be involved with a business. Whenever he saw a need for something in the community, he would act on it. This is how he got the idea for building his tattoo business, TAT4U, along with the popcorn and lemonade business which he named The Popcorn Jester. He started off making popcorn with this thought in mind: “Always do something better than the other person.” So after much planning and research he decided to make his popcorn in a different way – he thought nothing went better with a bag of popcorn than a cup of lemonade. So later, after discovering his idea was working in his favor, he decided to make different flavors of popcorn: strawberry and raspberry — but not just any strawberries and raspberries; his are fresh.

Mr. Kessler knows, however, that family comes first. He said that it’s important for his family of four to have dinner together — he even cooks! His wife, Mrs. Dina Kessler, a Business teacher at WHS, helps out with his business when he needs her to. “It’s fun working together!” says Mr. Kessler. They all work together when it’s time for Farmer’s Markets and festivals, but he is really the only one who has the drive for the tattoo business. His high school aged sons don’t really have an interest in it like he does, although they do enjoy working the concession stand as a family. “If you’re in a fun place to work, then you’re going to enjoy it,” says Mr. Kessler. He has even decided to allow his sons to work the stand alone this summer.

“Write a plan, do your research, and go for it!” Mr. Kessler says giving WHS students some advice on starting, running, and keeping a business going. Although we sometimes dislike having substitute teachers, we can learn a lot from them within the short time there are with us.

 

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