A pop-up lemonade stand called Bea’s Squeeze is now selling bottled drinks from a ledge about five feet above the Dequindre Cut pathway. The weekends-only beverage stand opened last Saturday between Gratiot and Adelaide.
Bea’s Squeeze is part lemonade business and part marketing stunt. Beatrice Wolnerman tells Eater that she and her husband Eli were exploring property listings in Detroit when they came across the unusual triangular-shaped, “undesirable” piece of land off the Dequindre Cut. They soon acquired the 600-square-foot plot at 1861 Gratiot Ave. for approximately $5,000. Wolnerman says the idea to sell lemonade came afterwards. “It was really the land that inspired us,” she says.
The couple, who operate custom gift box company Open Me When, purchased a former meatpacking facility in Eastern Market with a distinctive egg mural at 1533 Winder last fall with plans to renovate and turn it into Bea’s — a coworking space, retail store, and cafe serving Populace Coffee. However, the building instead went under demolition this week due to structural issues with the property. A newly constructed building with the original facade is expected to be completed this winter.
While the Bea’s property is under construction the Wolnermans wanted to demonstrate their “creative” approach to marketing to potential tenants in the Bea’s co-working space. Enter Bea’s Squeeze: The stand operates off a small wooden platform fitted with pulley system and ice chests filled with branded bottles of lemonade, orange cream, and water. Customers can purchase the bottles for between $2 and $3 each and the couple will lower down the cold drinks in a bucket. “It’s really fun and interactive way to bring someone lemonade,” she says.
Bea’s Squeeze does not produce the beverages itself, but rather purchases from and bottles its products from a company on the East Coast. The stand also recently collaborated with Eastern Market Brewing Co. on a beer called the Honey Bea’s Shandy, which is available this summer at the brewery.
Wolnerman says the hours are still being adjusted but she expects to open the stand from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. on Saturdays and Sundays (weather permitting) throughout the summer.
• Bea’s Squeeze Website [Official]
• All Pop-Ups Coverage [ED]
• Eastern Market Egg Building to Convert Into Retail, Event, and Coworking Space [CDET]
• Eastern Market Building to be Largely Demolished in Change of Plans for Bea’s Co-working Space [Crain’s]