Family selling home-grown bugs for a cause

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ANCHORAGE (KTUU) - For some, April Gonzalez’s garage might be something out of a nightmare.

There are thousands upon thousands of mealworms, beetles, and crickets living inside.

“I had to get used to it,” Gonzalez said. “Very used to it.”

Six months ago, she adopted a bearded dragon as a pet. But when she went to the pet store to buy food for it, the bugs were dead.

Whether it was the cold that got to them or the trip up, she said she noticed a shortage.

That’s when she decided to take it in her own hands and start “Krickets R Us.”

“It sounded like a good idea,” said Gonzalez’s aunt Rachel Meneses. Her other aunt, Emma Meneses agreed.

“We jumped right in as soon as she was talking about it,” she said.

And just like that, it went from solo project to family business. Krickets R Us is four months in and have thousands of creepy crawlies in their inventory.

Gonzalez admits that she hasn’t had a whole lot of customers yet, but said that she’s determined to keep her business venture going.

The goal for her? To eventually start a non-profit to distribute clothes to those less fortunate.

The idea didn’t sprout from nothing. Her family was once in a position where they couldn’t afford to outfit themselves.

“Two hundred and ten pounds,” recalls Gonzalez’s husband Antonio Anderson. That’s the number he weighed before he started chemotherapy for stage four throat cancer.

“I ended up at 89 pounds when I was done with chemotherapy,” he said.

"Losing weight like that, you have to get clothes constantly. And when you don't have the money like that to do it, he's pretty much begging for it.” Gonzalez said.

Anderson is now cancer-free.

Gonzalez hopes that the business will eventually support a future nonprofit to help give clothes to people who need them.

Krickets R Us delivers and bugs can be picked up as well. They also take any clothing donations which they plan to disperse to the community. To get in contact with Krickets R Us, call (907) 575-6311.

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