At the beginning of sixth grade, Adelle Pritchard ’22 and her entrepreneurial parents, Kenny and Carla Pritchard, were discussing ways to animate their Southside event space during the day. Her idea? “Let’s open a creperie.”
“My father is from England, where pancakes are known as crepes,” she explains. “Every Mardi Gras, our family tradition was to have hundreds of people over to our house, and we would end up making hundreds of crepes. I’ve always associated crepes and food with people I love gathered around a common thing.”
Pritchard added, “It took quite a lot of convincing,” but Adelle’s Ice Cream and Creperie opened in June 2016 in the Granfalloon on 400 E. Main Street. “My father especially wanted to make sure that I was involved in every step of the way with the business plan. He saw it as not only a great opportunity as a creative outlet, but also a way for me to learn basic business skills that I would use the rest of my life.”
As soon as I started talking about it, a lot of people told me it couldn’t happen because I was so young. But I’m a very stubborn and headstrong person, and so I wanted to prove them wrong.
In her newest book released in February, Living the Confidence Code: Real Girls. Real Stories. Real Confidence, author Kathy Kay gathered stories from girls around the world and wrote a chapter featuring Pritchard, focusing on the creperie itself, as well as the vulnerability of having a business at such a young age. “The futile pursuit of perfection is something she wanted to highlight in the book – the false idea that girls who have done something noteworthy must have it all figured out, which is absolutely not true,” Pritchard laughs.
Pritchard is now looking at ways to combine her love of food with passions for politics and community. Since eighth grade, she has received weekly orders from the Chattanooga Area Food Bank. Using the items listed, she then creates nutritious recipes for people receiving the food. “Food insecurity is something I am very passionate about, and we are looking at using the restaurant now in ways to help with that.”
While many people dream of owning a restaurant one day, it takes someone special to actually pull it off at the age of 12. “Part of opening the creperie was because I love cooking. But I also wanted to prove to myself that I could do it. As soon as I started talking about it, a lot of people told me it couldn’t happen because I was so young. But I’m a very stubborn and headstrong person, and so I wanted to prove them wrong. The experience itself has been really educational, but in the best way. Just because of your age or the situation you are in doesn’t determine what you are capable of.”