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Neighbors call police as Cedar Falls girl sells sweets

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CEDAR FALLS — A little girl ended her street-corner cookie sales after neighbors complained to police.

Savannah Watters, 10, had been selling cookies and flavored water on the corner of North Union Road and Paddington Drive until police recently were called three times because of the traffic she created.

“No one had talked to me about anything, they just took it upon themselves and called 911,” said Kara Watters, Savannah’s mother. “The police show up to talk to my daughter.”

Savannah had been peddling sweets for five weeks for hours each day.

“Every day for a couple hours I would bring my wagon and go down to the end of the street and sell stuff,” Savannah said.

Watters, a former baker, helped Savannah out by baking the cookies. On one day Savannah sold $250 worth of goodies. She was earning money to buy clothes for school.

“I enjoyed it a lot, so then I wanted to have a cookie shop with my mom ’cause it’s always been my dream to do that,” Savannah said. “I just wish that I could’ve just kept staying there.”

Savannah started making order forms and business cards to give out to customers. Then her cookie business crumbled.

“Then we come to find out yesterday they (the neighbors) ended up calling 911,” Kara Watters said. “What they were saying is they didn’t like the traffic turning around.”

The police were called three times, on July 27, 30 and 31. After the last call Savannah decided to suspend her fledgling sales career, at least at her corner location.

The first complaint noted Savannah was selling without an adult present, said Cedar Falls Public Safety Director Jeff Olson. The other reports concerned traffic.

The speed limit on Union Road is 45 mph, and the speed limit on Paddington Drive is 25 mph.

“We had her move a few feet back from the curve,” Olson said.

Neighbor Melissa Winberg said she called police because the traffic coming in and out of the Paddington Drive was dangerous.

“We’ve had too many people coming in that we don’t know,” Winberg said. “My daughter was in our driveway riding her bike, and a car pulled in and almost hit her.”

Winberg parked her car along her driveway to prevent people from pulling in to turn around.

“We had three semis, a dump truck and four cars parked along the road,” Winberg said. “To be honest, if her mom wants to open a cookie shop, there are other ways of doing it than making her 10-year-old daughter sit on the corner for seven hours a day.”

Savannah still can sell cookies in her driveway, and she’s still taking orders.

“She’s trying to figure out how she can keep it going,” Kara Watters said. “She just wants her customers to know.”


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