Richard Scarry’s Cars and Trucks and Things That Go was my older son’s favourite. Maurice Sendak’s Where the Wild Things Are was beloved by my younger son, who rushed to see the movie when it came out in 2009.
I didn’t read to them about money — how to save, spend, lend and donate it to charity — when they were preschoolers. That may be a result of not finding any good Canadian books that explored the topic.
Each book features the adventures of twins Tessa and Benji, based on the real-life Teresa and her brother Ben, as they save loose change in a piggy bank, run a lemonade stand, open bank accounts, plan their purchases, count money and make loans to each other to buy the toy they want.
Her company was the first small brewer to land on the top 10 of sales at The Beer Store with its Honey Lager brand, gaining market share through a buck-a-beer pricing campaign and determined public relations efforts.
“This is a media savvy company,” said Star beer reporter Jon Filson. “Lakeport frequently ends up in the media, from call-in shows to articles like this one. It keeps playing that ‘little company that could’ card, telling and retelling the story of how Cascioli came to the company in 1999, when it was in bankruptcy protection, and turned it around.
In 2007, Cascioli (at that point its 100 per cent owner) sold Lakeport to Labatt for $ 201 million. In 2010, Labatt closed the Hamilton brewery, laying off 143 workers and shifting production to its flagship brewing facility in London, Ont.
I heard about her new venture at a financial literacy conference last week and started following her on Twitter @misformoneyCA. Within hours, she sent an email with press releases, asking me to help spread the word.
It’s hard for a newcomer to break into book publishing, a business with little or no growth. Cascioli is also trying to get into public schools, using knowledge gained from previous business experience to fuel her ascent.
There are free guides for parents, teachers and librarians, which you can download and print at no cost. There are free games, reward certificates, a recipe for lemonade and a sign for your own lemonade stand.
Cascioli released the first three books in September and three more this month. Ever the entrepreneur, she’s already thinking about teaching adolescents how not to beg their parents for money.
If you want a beautiful looking volume, look elsewhere. But if you want a beautiful message, this might be the gift for your family.