Boy’s lemonade stand raises thousands for friend with muscular dystrophy

SAN DIEGO - At some point when we were kids, most of us thought about setting up a lemonade stand, but few of us could have dreamed of raking in as much money as Dylan Rodriguez.

“We have about $8,000 so far,” Dylan told KSWB with a smile. His goal is to raise $10,000 by Friday. But once that goal is reached, Dylan doesn’t plan to go on some shopping spree or buy video games - instead, he plans to hand it over to his friend Kalel.

“I felt sad for him, so I wanted to help,” Dylan said.

Dylan and Kalel both grew up in Ocean Beach and were friends at an early age. A couple of years ago, Kalel and his family moved north near Yosemite National Park.

Kalel was diagnosed with Duchenne muscular dystrophy last December. Only five in one million people get the disease, and currently there’s no treatment.

“It’s been hard,” Rick, Kalel’s father, said.  “Nobody wants a clock put on their son.” He said the past nine months have been draining. Though treatments for his son ease the pain, they cost upwards of $10,000 a shot.

That’s where Dylan's lemonade stand comes in. Accepting donations in exchange for lemonade with assistance from 93.3 FM and Jersey Mike’s, Dylan and his team are closing in on the $10,000 goal. The 44 franchise locations for Jersey Mike’s are offering to sell a special "Dylan’s Lemonade Stand" cup for about $2.30 to customers at each location, with full proceeds going to Kalel’s family.

“I’m pretty sure we’ll make it!” an enthusiastic Dylan said.

Others can help donate by searching #FlexForKal on social media.

“We were taken aback by it,” Rick said. “For him to get this kind of following speaks to what kind of kid he is and what kind of city San Diego is.”