He asked his parents if he could sell the pumpkins they had been growing on their land in Sonoma and donate the proceeds to local San Francisco nonprofits, including the Food Bank. That first year, much to his surprise, he managed to raise $100 dollars. At the time, he was blown away by how much he had raised on his own.
Fast-forward to present day, and the now 14 year-old Coulter and his schoolmate since kindergarten, Phillip Goss, are running a large-scale pumpkin selling operation with as many as 20 classmates at a time pitching in to help. Last year, they managed to raise more than $13,000 for local nonprofits.
While most middle students prefer to hang out at the mall, play video games and sleep in, Wyeth Coulter and Phillip Goss manage to break the mold. Together, the two are learning what it takes to run a small business while helping others in need. In preparing for each season, the two discuss what types of pumpkins they will plant, when they will harvest, how they will market to sell, how they will price, and the hours of operation to sell the pumpkins out of the Coulters San Francisco backyard. In short, they are learning how to run a successful business.
The two attribute much of their success to the support they’ve received from the community. “It’s amazing how many people have gotten involved to help out,” said Goss. “Without the support, we’d probably still be bringing in around $100 per year,” adds Coulter.
In all, the boys have raised tens of thousands of dollars to support those in need in the community, with much of the money being given to the Food Bank.