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Buy Holiday Gifts From Business-Savvy Youngsters at 'Kidpreneur' Market

 Three of the Kidpreneurs and the items they'll be selling at Sunday's market.
Three of the Kidpreneurs and the items they'll be selling at Sunday's market.
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Courtesy Margarita Soto

ASTORIA — A group of pint-sized entrepreneurs will be peddling their wares at a holiday pop-up shop that will showcase only items made by kids.

The Kidpreneur Market will take place Sunday from 10:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. at Q.E.D. in Astoria, the work of local mom Margarita Soto and her husband, whose own three kids were bitten by the business bug at a young age.

"All of them, you know, are always trying to make a buck," laughed Soto, who said her kids' past ventures have included shoveling snow or selling bottled water on hot days.

"In New York City, it's really challenging — kids can't really set up a lemonade stand in front of their house or apartment," she said. "We just wanted to create a space where kids can safely express themselves."

Soto said the market, which was inspired by a similar event that took place in the neighborhood last year, will feature about 20 "kidpreneurs" between the ages of 5 and 13. Many hail from Astoria but some are from Brooklyn, Manhattan and even Cold Spring, N.Y.

They include Soto's own son Samuel, 11, who will be selling handmade holiday ornaments that will cost between 50 cents and $3, as well as comic books he drew. Her 5-year-old daughter Veronica will be selling her handmade crown headbands.

Other vendors will include Lyla Tov Monsters, a line of plush monster dolls designed by 10-year-old Astoria resident Lyla Black as part of a venture she launched a few years back.

She'll be selling three of her cuddly creations at the market, where she's excited to mingle with business owners her own age.

"It's fun to meet other people who have started a business like me," Lyla said.

Other kids will sell handcrafted jewelry, fuzzy pencil toppers and holiday cards, said Soto, who sees the market as an opportunity to teach children business skills like design, sales, marketing and how to handle money.

"There are definitely lessons that are helpful for school, and life," added Soto, who said she and her husband believe kids are "innate creators."

"Children are risk-takers. They're used to falling and getting up."