These young Black entrepreneurs are making headlines in Saginaw

SAGINAW, MI — You don’t have to be grown up to accomplish big things, and Saginaw’s kid entrepreneurs are proof.

From a high school saxophone player performing “sidewalk serenades” during the pandemic to the teenage creator of “Black Girl Magic” popcorn, here’s a look back at some of Saginaw’s young entrepreneurs who made headlines in the last few months:

Kaylynn Martin, 15, poses for a photograph at her mother Alesha Martin’s spa called luxXBRW located at 3177 Shattuck Road in Saginaw Township on Monday, April 12, 2021. Kaylynn is a young entrepreneur who began Kakes the Great Popcorn Co. (Kaytie Boomer | Boomer |

Saginaw teen entrepreneur makes ‘Black Girl Magic’ popcorn and other treats

A Saginaw teen’s gourmet popcorn company offers homemade kettle corn in a variety of unique flavors, including “Black Girl Magic.”

Kaylynn Martin, 15, is the young entrepreneur behind Kakes the Great Popcorn Co. She runs the business with help from her mother, Alesha Martin, owner of luxXBRW.

Kakes the Great offers homemade kettle corn flavored with chocolate and other sweet and salty toppings. Kaylynn Martin started out making and selling her popcorn to friends and family as a way to earn extra money last year and the business grew from there.

“I actually made a recipe and my mom loved it so I was like, ‘Let’s do this,’” said the Saginaw Township teen. “I really wanted to help my mom pay for my braces so Kakes the Great started.”

Now, she’s selling her products online and in store at Delicious Sweets Bakeshop at the SVRC Marketplace in downtown Saginaw, Katy’s Kards, 1200 Court St. in Saginaw, and at her mom’s spa, 3177 Shattuck Road in Saginaw Township.

Flavors include Myrtle Turtle, which has “the tanginess of cranberries and the sweetness of candied pecans with the right mix of milk and white chocolate,” Jackson, “a perfect blend of cookies and cream,” and Black Girl Magic, “she is everything sweet and spice and everything nice” topped with chocolate, toffee, salted pecans, and gold glitter. Black Girl Magic is Kaylynn Martin’s favorite and a top-seller, she said.

Read the full story here.

Three kid brothers form 3 Amigos Lawncare Service

Marcus McBride, 12, Travell McBride, 10, and Marcelino McBride, 9, care for their yard as a team in Saginaw on Thursday, Aug. 12, 2021. The three McBride brothers formed 3 Amigos Lawncare Service. (Kaytie Boomer | Boomer |

Kid brothers form 3 Amigos lawn care service, mowing Saginaw lawns over summer break

Over summer break, a stretch of time kids often spend sleeping in and playing, three Saginaw brothers, ages 12, 10 and 9, started a lawn care business, developed a reputation and earned dozens of regular customers.

Now, with summer coming to a close, the boys behind 3 Amigos Lawncare Service plan to offer all-season services.

“I’m very proud of them,” said their mom, Terri Reed. “They’re some hard working young boys.”

Reed said her eldest son, Marcus McBride, first came up with the idea for a lawn care company a couple months ago.

“Marcus told me that he wanted to start his own business doing lawn care work,” she said. “So, the following day, I got up and I purchased all their equipment and their work clothes.”

Reed said her 12-year-old son didn’t have any lawn care experience at the time, but he had a vision and “he likes to work.”

With some help from their mom, Marcus, Travell and Marcelino McBride launched 3 Amigos Lawncare Service. Throughout the summer they have offered mowing, weed whacking, edging, trimming, bagging and clean up. Pricing varies depending on services rendered and yard size.

“It’s going great. I didn’t expect them to be as busy as they are. It’s been crazy,” Reed said, noting that her sons have about 40 regular customers and some commercial properties in their rotation.

Read the full story here.

Teen saxophone player's 'sidewalk serenades' bring smiles to Saginaw

Lionel “LJ” Baldwin Jr., 15, poses for a photograph after performing “Happy Birthday” during a gig in Saginaw on Thursday, May 27, 2021. (Kaytie Boomer | Boomer |

Teen saxophone player’s ‘sidewalk serenades’ bring smiles to Saginaw

Lionel “LJ” Baldwin Jr. is a high schooler with a 4.214 GPA and an accomplished student athlete and musician.

When he’s not studying, playing football or basketball, wrestling, running track, or playing saxophone in the Arthur Hill High School band, you might find Baldwin performing on a sidewalk somewhere in Saginaw.

Baldwin began performing his “sidewalk serenades” for Mother’s Day 2020 as a way to bring some socially-distant joy to people during the early days of the COVID-19 pandemic and earn some extra money.

“A lot of people because of the pandemic were not congregating and we could not be close to them,” he said. “My mother (Arshen Baldwin) actually had the great idea to start playing for people on their sidewalks — not too close, not too far — and just bring some happiness back because it was a very sad time.”

They promoted the $25 “sidewalk serenades for Mother’s Day” on social media and were soon booked up.

“We actually just drove around Saginaw for that entire day playing for a lot of peoples’ mothers and just hopefully making their Mother’s Day better,” Lionel “LJ” Baldwin Jr. said. “By the end of the day, I had played for about 16 people around Saginaw.”

His business has been growing ever since.

Lionel “LJ” Baldwin Jr. performs on the street in Frankenmuth every weekend, and clients have hired him for birthdays and other special occasions. He recently performed for Saginaw Mayor Brenda Moore’s birthday, surprising her between meetings, and for a group of COVID-19 nurses.

His song list numbers about 60 titles now.

Read the full story here.

S.W.A.G. Magazine

The cover art for the inaugural issue of “S.W.A.G. Magazine,” a news and entertainment magazine created by SASA middle schooler Julian Morris. Courtesy of Julian Morris.

Saginaw middle-schooler starts entertainment magazine

Julian Morris is a student at the Saginaw Arts & Sciences Academy. And earlier this year, at the age of 13, he published the first issue of his own magazine.

With some help from his parents and aunties, Morris put the first issue of S.W.A.G. Magazine together. The project gave him something to put his energy into during remote classes, he said. The inaugural issue went live Jan. 27.

In his letter from the editor published on the magazine’s website, Morris describes S.W.A.G. Magazine as “The Voice of the Future,” featuring entertainment and news from a teenage perspective. The title is an acronym for “Students With a Gift,” Morris said.

The first issue featured six articles written by Morris, discussing topics like COVID-19 and remote classes. Also included are a health tips story by Dr. Marche’ Smith, a Georgia pediatrician and Saginaw native, and encouraging words for teenagers by Pastor Elvin Owens of From the Heart Ministries in Bridgeport, Morris said.

“We plan to talk about everything but from the mind of a teenager, COVID, sports, politics, entertainment,” Morris said.

Read the full story here.

Saginaw 11-year-old turns bath bomb hobby into small business

Sa’Veya Jackson, 11, poses for a photograph with products from her business Exploring Bath Bombs on Thursday, April 22, 2021. (Kaytie Boomer | Boomer |

Middle schooler turns bath bomb hobby into small business

A couple years ago, with some help from her mom, child entrepreneur Sa’Veya Jackson turned her bath bomb-making hobby into a small business.

Now, the Saginaw County tween makes and sells her own bath bombs, has published four books, and has a website and two free gaming apps on Google Play. The middle schooler dreams of growing her business even more.

“I want to be my own company,” said Jackson, who learned how to make bath bombs by watching YouTube videos.

In 2018, Serina Jackson encouraged her then 8-year-old daughter to write about something she loved. Sa’Veya Jackson, who had an interest in making bath bombs, launched her first book, “Exploring Bath Bombs: Bath Time Fun with Sa’Veya,” on her 9th birthday.

“After she wrote her first book, I said, ‘You could turn your book into a business,’” Serina Jackson said.

Since then, she has published three more books, launched her website,, and hosted her first solo pop-up shop this month to showcase her products.

“It’s fun. It’s fun to make the bath bombs and write my books,” said the White Pine Middle School student.

Read the full story here.

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