Casey Gibson is selling frozen treats around town this summer. Contributed photo

13 and working for his Kool hard cash

Young Smithers entrepreneur navigates regulations to get ice cream biz rolling.

A new entrepreneur has stepped onto the local business scene in the Bulkley Valley.

Casey Gibson, aged 13, will be selling frozen treats from his mobile cart throughout Smithers and Telkwa this summer. It is a business venture he has launched with the support of his family.

“Kool Treatz is an ice cream cart that started out as a lemonade stand. I’m like, ‘Grandpa, I want to do my own business’ … He just bought the cart, and I never knew he did, he just surprised me. So that’s how I got the business,” Casey said.

April Gibson, Casey’s mother and the official owner of Kool Treatz, said Casey has a payment plan in place to reimburse his grandfather for the cart.

The process of getting the business off the ground has had its hurdles. Casey said the bureaucratic process of obtaining the necessary permits was the reason he did not do any vending last year.

“Yeah, it was pretty difficult for a little while, but we got it through,” he said.

Now that Kool Treatz has been approved as a sidewalk vendor, the ice cream cart is open for business, selling frozen yogurt, drumsticks, and freezies. Casey was present at Bike to Work Week festivities, and said he will be attending baseball events and making his way around town. He is also applying to be a vendor at the Telkwa Barbeque and demolition derby.

“Even though he’s a small business, you still have to pay vendor fees. There’s not a lot of exception; just because he is a 13-year-old doesn’t mean he still doesn’t have to pay the fees and apply to be there. He still has to follow all the rules like everybody else,” April said.

The Gibsons said they are always re-vamping their menu, and are open to suggestions from the public for their product list.

As summer comes to Smithers and the weather gets hotter, listen for the sound of bells on the street — it may mean Kool Treatz is nearby.

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