HUTTO, Texas - Chris and Gina Auditore opened up the "Happy Panini" food truck in Hutto at the beginning of the pandemic after Chris lost his job. During the difficult time, the community supported the Auditore family by donating to the GoFundMe page the family started.
Three years later, "Happy Panini" is giving back to the same community who supported them.
"The benefit of being here in Hutto is, although we're small, we're quickly growing. We love to see people rally behind a cause," Chris Auditore said.
Auditore says Hutto, the hippo capitol, is very welcoming to small businesses. After receiving the support from the community, they wanted to give back to those who may want to start their own business.
"We want to encourage children at a young age to start early and get going on what they're excited about passionate about," Auditore said.
Kids like Jessika Rodriguez will be able to display their products and sell them at Hutto's first ever Kidpreneur Market next Saturday.
"In the summer, I wanted to get a laptop, and I asked my dad. He said he wouldn't get it for me. I had to find a way to get it myself," Rodriguez said. "So I started making the crochet items to sell, and we came here in June and I sold them and I got my laptop."
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About 20 kids from Hutto will be able to show off their products for the community to purchase.
"We have 3D printers, kids that do 3D printing, bakers, dog treat makers, artists, jeweler makers," said Gina Auditore.
Auditore says this market is set up to teach kids how to run a successful business.
"I'm trying to get them a small, very simplified 5-step business model to kind of go through, so you can know what your profit is at the end of the day," she said.
If you're interested in supporting small businesses this holiday season, the Kidpreneur Market will be located in the "Happy Panini" lot in Hutto on Saturday, Nov. 25 from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m.