Local News

February 15, 2014

Girl Scout cookies available Monday

“Samoas!” “Thin Mints!” “Tagalongs!”

The members of Girl Scout Troop 11622, which meets at Mount Vernon United Methodist Church in Westside, may not agree on what their favorite Girl Scout cookie is, but they do agree that they are almost as much fun to sell as to eat.

“You tell people that you have cookies and they ask what kinds you have,” said troop member Charlotte Edwards.

Cookie sales remain the Girl Scouts’ main fundraiser, but Troop Leader Mae Jensen said that beyond the money the cookie sales also teach girls many life skills.

“When they are little, that’s a big draw. ‘I want to be a Girl Scout, so I can sell cookies,’” Jensen said. “They see the girls out there, and they want to be part of that. But as they grow older, they learn simple but important things. You have to ask. You can’t have your mom ask for you. You have to stand up straight and look people in the eye. If someone says no, you still have to say ‘Thank you.”

The cookies come in Monday. Girl Scouts will soon be out in the community selling the cookies, and the members of Troop 11622 met recently to practice their salesmanship.

Jensen said local scouts will be selling the “Super Six”: Thin Mints (chocolate-covered peppermint wafers), Do-Si-Dos (peanut butter sandwiches), Tagalongs (chocolate-covered peanut butter wafers), Samoas (vanilla cookies covered with caramel, chocolate and coconut), Trefoils (shortbread) and Savannah Smiles (lemon-favored).

So what is the biggest seller locally?

“Across the country, the big three are Thin Mints, Samoas and Tagalongs,” Jensen said. “Last year, the big one in this area was Tagalongs. We sold those out pretty quickly.”

And those on a diet can still buy cookies. The Girl Scouts has a program that allows people to donate their cookies to the military. Just order and pay for the cookies, and the Girl Scouts ships them to military bases around the world.

So where does the money raised by the cookie sales go?

“All the money that our girls raise after paying the bakery that makes them stays local. It stays with the troop or in Whitfield County or goes to our council, the Girl Scouts of Greater Atlanta, which we are a member of,” Jensen said.

Jensen said the money is used for a number of services, such as providing required background checks and training for adult leaders or scholarships to pay for Girl Scout memberships or uniforms for girls who can’t afford them.

And local troop members get to choose how they use the portion that comes back to them. Jensen said her troop always contributes a portion of its money to charity.

“They have done it for homeless shelters, for animal shelters,” she said. “This year, they are going to use part of it to contribute cookies to the Ronald McDonald House (a place to stay for the families of children at the Children’s Hospital at Erlanger in Chattanooga). If the families there need a snack, the Ronald McDonald House will serve them the cookies.”

They also use the money they raise for fun.

“When they were younger, they wanted an ice cream party, so we threw them an ice cream party. They have sent themselves to camp. This year, the girls will be old enough to take archery classes, and they are excited about that. They have gone to the Chattanooga zoo and held a sleepover at the Chattanooga aquarium,” Jensen said.

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