April 2009 Archives

Troop 9469 with Joy Blondheim.jpgTroop 9469 had a booth at the recent Joy to Life Walk to earn its Silver Award. They recruited many new Girl Scouts and leaders. They also gave out packets to those Girl Scouts attending to complete the following badges:  In the Pink (Cadettes); Walking for Fitness (Juniors); and Women's Health (Cadettes and Seniors). These materials are now available at the Montgomery Service Center, if anyone is interested in earning these three badges. (Ask the front desk for them.) Thank you for supporting our troop!

Basic Water Rescue/Small Craft Safety Canoe - Auburn/Opelika

Program: Volunteers

When: 8:30 a.m. - 4:30 p.m., June 6

Volunteers: Canoe Training

Location: Auburn/Opelika
Cost: $30
Registration/Cancellation Deadline: May 29
Prerequisite: Basic Canoe Skills
Who: Registered Girl Scout age 14 +
Alt rain date: June 20
Bring: sack lunch and drinks
The purpose of this course is to provide the information and skills to prevent, recognize and respond to small craft and aquatic emergencies using non-swimming rescues. This training is required to take Girl Scouts canoeing on lakes.

Skill requirements: Be able to swim 25 yards, tread water for one minute without a life jacket, and demonstrate basic canoeing skills including: launching, boarding, paddling forward and backward, stopping, turning and straight line solo paddling. Participants will also be capsizing and re-entering a canoe from deep water.

Adults must be approved in order to:

        Transport Girl Scouts in a vehicle

        Serve as a Chaperone

        Attend an overnight event (this includes camping) with the girls

        Handle troop or service area money


 To be approved, an adult must:

·         REGISTER to be a member of Girl Scouts and complete the GSUSA membership form and submits the $10 annual membership fee to the council.

(The fee goes up to $12 in 2009-2010)


·         COMPLETE the Adult Volunteer Application, which includes the:

        Authorization to Release Information Form

        Adult Volunteer Application

        Driving Record Request form


These forms must be returned at least four weeks prior to an event for the council to complete the approval process. The Driving Record Request form is needed only if you will be transporting girls.

Cookie Bites


5 Things You Need to Know NOW!

  1. Cookie incentives have arrived in many parts of the council.  If you haven't received yours yet, they should be in your hands by the beginning of next week!
  2. The "My First Cookie Sale" patch will soon be on its way to those who ordered them.  These patches were ordered this week from the company.
  3. We take your comments seriously!  Please make sure to go online and complete our online cookie survey by Friday, May 1 (tomorrow!).  We will share the outcomes of the survey in next week's edition of cookie bites.
  4. You deserve a pat on the back!  Thanks so much for your work to assist us in collecting on cookie delinquencies.  We are down to less than $10,000 still owed for cookies, which is way ahead of where we were at this time last year.
  5. This week's 800+ club parties have been a big success!  We enjoyed seeing so many of our wonderful volunteers and girls and have the opportunity to highlight the girls' achievements.  We saw lots of smiling faces and folks having fun.  Thanks, again, to these special young ladies!

I had the opportunity to attend an end-of-the-year tea last weekend, my first tea since I was in a sorority in college.   It was a beautiful day, and the girls were stunning in their matching dresses, hair bands and hats.   The tables were set with wedding china and silver tea service. One of the leaders gave us a great talk on tea parties, their history and some points on etiquette, which was a lot of fun.   We proceeded to have a delightful afternoon together.


Having worked 30 years in higher education, graduation time always brought some melancholy.   Some of those students would march across the stage out of my life.   There would be some who would stay in touch and others I would never see again, even though I might have interacted with them daily for four years.


This celebration had that same feeling.   This service unit had five girls who were graduating from high school and going on to college and their journey in life.   All the girls from this service unit signed their graduation cards, illustrating the circle of friends created by Girl Scouts.    One of the leaders spent about a week making pearl bracelets for each girl attending the afternoon tea.    As they were given the pearl bracelets, which were a big hit, they were told the story of Juliette Low and her pearls.    Each part of the event reminded me how every leader that spoke that day was an educator.    Each one took the time, like Juliette to sacrifice something so these girls can have some life-changing experiences.

Thank you for all you do for the girls of our council!


Liz Brent, Ph.D.


Whether you need a first-aider really depends on what the girls will be doing.  Meetings and activities don't automatically require a first-aider to be present, but I do recommend that leaders and/or assistants have CPR and First Aid training because, with children, anything can happen at any time. 

The guidelines that you absolutely must follow are those printed in Safety-Wise and the Policies and Procedures manual.  Use the index to find the specific information about the safety guidelines that apply.  If you have trouble finding something, ask a Service Unit or Council resource person.  I'm always happy to help you.


Cheryl Miller


Troop 9469 Invites You

to a TOGA Block Party

Monday, May 11

6 p.m. - 8 p.m.

Montgomery Service Center

Come meet your fellow TOGA Girl Scouts. We're going international, so bring hors d'oevures from the country of your choice.  We'll eat, talk, and have fun!

RSVP by: Friday, May 8

Cost: $3
To Register: Download the Event Registration Form and return to Karlyn Edmonds or the Montgomery Service Center.


Check out the cool ad the girls from Troop 9469 made:

Memorial Day is a U.S. holiday observed on the last Monday of May (May 25 this year).  Formerly known as Decoration Day, it commemorates U.S. men and women who died while in military service to their country.  Starting in the 1950s on the Thursday before Memorial Day, the 1,200 soldiers of the 3rd U.S. Infantry place small American flags at each of the more than 260,000 gravestones at Arlington National Cemetery.


There are three national cemeteries near our council that will have Memorial Day activities your troop can participate in.  Andersonville National Cemetery, Fort Mitchell and Mobile National Cemetery will allow troops to place flags on the graves of veterans at 9 a.m., Saturday, May 23.  If your troop is interested, you just need to call the cemetery and tell them your troop number and how many will participate.  Click on the names of the cemeteries, for contact information.  They will also have ceremonies on Sunday your troop can attend.  The Andersonville Cemetery Administrator, Gerry Allen, asks that you register before May 1.


Some other suggestions for your troop:

  • Visit memorials
  • Fly the U.S. Flag at half-staff until noon
  • Fly the 'POW/MIA Flag'
  • Participate in a "National Moment of Remembrance" at 3 p.m. to pause and think upon the true meaning of the day.
  • Renew a pledge to aid the widows, widowers, and orphans of the fallen, and to aid the disabled veterans.

Cookie "Taste Test" Adds Tasty Fun to Annual Meeting

Volunteers tested their taste buds at our recent annual meeting.  During a special cookie taste test, guests at the meeting were asked to try samples of the top-selling cookies from Little Brownie Bakers (our current council baker) and ABC Bakers.  These samples included, Samoas/Caramel deLlights, Tagalongs/Peanut Butter Patties, Thin Mints and Trefoil/Shortbread.  It was a lot of fun to watch everyone examining - and even smelling - the different cookies!


The results of this fun survey were interesting and surprising.  It was almost a tie between the Little Brownie Tagalongs and the ABC Peanut Butter Patties, as many of you liked the creamy peanut butter in the ABC version.   The ABC Shortbread cookie and the Trefoil ended in dead heat, too, with some of our guests enjoying the sweeter Little Brownie cookie and others preferring the buttery taste of the ABC cookie.  The Little Brownie Samoa and Thin Mint won the taste test in their categories, and we received some interesting comments.


This cookie taste test was a part of our council's ongoing efforts to make our volunteers participants in our decision-making processes.  We want to make sure we have the best cookie baker for the girls of Southern Alabama and appreciate your input in this process.  Look for more cookie information coming soon!

There have been a lot of questions about the future of the Girl Scout Bronze, Silver and Gold Awards. These awards will remain the highest awards in Girl Scouting. Guidelines for the awards are being revised by GSUSA to align them with the Girl Scout Leadership Experience and will be released in August 2009.


There has been a slight change in the grade level requirements for the awards: Bronze -- 4th and 5th grade Juniors; Silver--6th-8th grade Cadettes; Gold --9th-12th grade Seniors and Ambassadors. Girls who have not begun working on awards are encouraged to work through the grade-appropriate Journey. Completion of the Journey will satisfy much of the prerequisite work for the award.


Girls who have already begun working on their awards will have until October 1, 2011, to finish under the old guidelines. This is a lengthy transition and should give girls adequate time to finish their projects and paperwork.


The council plans to revise the planner and release the revised planner and award requirements at the end of the summer. Girls and troops who plan to begin work on awards before the new guidelines are released should contact Mary Anne Brutkiewicz in the Mobile Service Center (800.239.6636, ext: 1202) for further information and instructions.

Summer is upon us and Big Kahuna's Water and Adventure Park is gearing up for 2009 Scout Days!  Big Kahuna's in Destin, Fla. Is offering a Scout Day between May 23 - June 20, to allow more flexibility for troops.  All Scouts, Troop Leaders, and Chaperones receive $22.99 park admission, which is normally $36.99!  Troop members will also receive a free Scout Day patch.


Dates: May 23 - June 20, 2009

Time: 10 a.m. - 6 p.m.

Admission: $22.99 per person plus tax

Minimum: 10 Scouts

Where: Big Kahuna's 1007 Highway 98 East, Destin, Fla.

For More Information: Shanean Jones at 850.837.8319, ext: 23, or e-mail sjones@palaceentertainment.com.

Girl Scouts of the USA and FIRST continue to inspire interest in science and technology through competition

April 16 -- 18 six Girl Scout teams from around the country traveled to the Georgia Dome to participate in the 2009 FIRST (For Inspiration and Recognition of Science and Technology) Robotics World Championship. The girls competed against more than 10,000 students, from middle school and high school, in a robotics contest that teaches young people to address engineering and design problems in a creative and collaborative way.


Last year, Girl Scouts of the USA (GSUSA) announced a partnership with FIRST as part of the organization's commitment to inspiring more girls and young women to pursue STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Math) careers. The partnership was designed to foster opportunities for girls to explore STEM by providing hands-on experience in the designing, building and programming of robots while applying the concept of 'gracious professionalism' during competition. The partnership is made possible through support from the Motorola Foundation. 

"In an ever-changing economy there is a growing demand for critical thinkers," remarked GSUSA Chief of Staff, Jaclyn Libowitz. "Through programs like FIRST and our other STEM initiatives, we're showing girls that not only can they be successful in math and science, but they can also be leaders in those fields."


Teams who qualified for the FIRST Championship include:

FLL (FIRST Lego Leagues)

  • Ice Breakers - Girl Scouts of Nassau County
  • Weather Robots - Girl Scouts of Greater Los Angeles

FTC (FIRST Tech Challenge)

  • Rock 'n Roll Robots - Girl Scouts of Greater Los Angeles
  • Techno Chix - Girl Scouts Heart of the Hudson

FRC (FIRST Robotics Challenge)

  • Space Cookies - Girl Scouts of Northern California
  • Austin Lady Tin Cans - Girl Scouts of Central Texas

"We're excited to be able to continue our partnership with the Girl Scouts" said Paul Gudonis, FIRST President. "Through their innovation, teamwork and leadership, the Girl Scout teams that have advanced to the Championship are showing other young people that science can be rewarding and fun."

Your response and comments on this year's Cookie Sale are very important in continuing to improve and provide quality services and programs to the Girl Scouts of Southern Alabama.  As a part of our ongoing efforts to improve the cookie sale, we ask that you complete our special Post-Cookie Sale Survey.  Thank you for your hard work, dedication and input on the 2009 Cookie Sale.


Click on the link to take the survey: http://survey.constantcontact.com/survey/a07e2i69qyfftj1sc1x/start

All Boy Scouts and Girl Scouts are invited to bring out their family and friends to Stanky Field and cheer on the USA Jaguars as they take on the Troy Trojans.  Scouts will watch the game, get a patch, participate in the National Anthem and much more! 


You can choose to attend the game May 15 or 16.  Both days will have the discounted ticket price, and announcement of Scouts during the game.  On May 15, there will also be participation in the National Anthem on the field, post-game fireworks and run-the-bases!


Cost:    Tickets are $3 for the game ticket and patch. 

For $7, you will also get a "Fastball" meal of hamburgers & hotdogs,
            popcorn or chips, cole slaw and a beverage.

When: Friday, May 15 at 6 p.m. or Saturday, May 16 at 2 p.m.

To Register: Contact Alyssa Reilly at 251.461.1384

Registration Deadline: Monday, May 4

We have been hard at work finalizing this year's cookie sale and would like to thank everyone for all of your hard work.  It is thanks to the dedication and skill of all our volunteers that we have had a wonderful activity for the girls to participate in. 


Like all of you, we have been anxiously awaiting the delivery of the incentives!  Unfortunately, we found out that Little Brownie Bakers has not yet sent these items.  We know that the time that it takes to order the incentives at the troop level to the time that the girls actually get the incentives in hand is already too long for that Girl Scout who can't wait to get her beach towel or theme T-shirt or even her participation patch.  We sincerely regret the delay in the shipping of the incentives.  We are working with Little Brownie in hopes that they will be able to ship our incentive orders as soon as possible.  In the meantime, we would like to thank you for your patience.  We hope that you will be able to receive your incentives at your May Service Unit meetings.  That, however, is entirely dependent upon how quickly Little Brownie can get the items shipped.  We will update you as we receive information from Little Brownie.


Thank you for all that you do for the girls!

Since many of you will soon be registering for the 2009-10 membership year (to take advantage of all of the perks!), here's some helpful tidbits for filling out registration forms:

On each Adult and Girl Registration Form there is a little box at the bottom of the form on the right.   You do  not have to check anything for category, but please put the council code (307), the troop number (4 digits) and the service unit number (3 digits) on every form.


On the Girl form, the Emergency Contact should be someone other than the parents, who can be contacted in an emergency if the parents are not available.       


On the Adult forms, the position codes are listed in the right hand column of the form. Please put the correct code for adults:

01 for Troop Leader, 02 for Asst Leader, 03 for  Troop Committee Member, etc.  Only adults who complete the leader training courses should be listed as 01's or 02's.  Most parents are going to be listed as 14, which is Member. Some adults may have more than one position if they are a troop leader and also serve in another position.


If you have any questions about Early Registration, contact Lindsey Spear at 800-239-6636, ext: 1102. 

juniorbridge.jpgLeaders, planning your bridging ceremony has just become easier! Purchase a Bridging Kit for each girl and receive all the items she needs to advance to the next Girl Scout grade level.  Bridging kits cost $10 each and include:

·        To Brownie:  Bridge to Brownie Patch, Membership Star & Disc, Bridging Certificate, Daisy Ending Certificate and Journey Book

·         To Junior:  Bridge to Junior Patch, Membership Star & Disc, Bridging Certificate, Brownie Wings and Journey Book

·         To Cadette:  Bridge to Cadette Patch, Membership Star & Disc, Bridging Certificate and Journey Book

·         To Senior:  Bridge to Senior Patch, Membership Star & Disc, Bridging Certificate and Journey Book


E-mail or fax your orders to the store using the Shop Order form.  

Girl Scouts honor their leaders on Girl Scout Leader Appreciation Day, April 22 (during National Volunteer Week). These devoted leaders unselfishly

donate their time and energy to plan and lead fun and educational troop meetings and outings for the members of their troops. Girl Scout leaders

possess caring hearts and creative minds, doing everything within their power to help expand the girls' horizons, giving them countless

opportunities they normally would not come across. These experiences can range anywhere from organizing programs for special needs

individuals to community services to learning about various cultures of the world at an international fair to grooming horses on a farm. These

seemingly tireless leaders dedicate themselves year round to helping girls develop into self-assured, resourceful young women.


For those of you who have a daughter in Girl Scouting, please take a moment to think about their leader (or leaders). Think about how at each

troop meeting the leader is prepared to have your daughter experience new challenges and gain positive skills for the future. Think about the

amount of time the leader devotes to preparing for meetings and field trips while balancing her own family, career and other time constraints.

These women make such a difference in the lives of girls. They are essential to making Girl Scouting the outstanding and successful program

it is known to be. There can never be enough of these amazing women.


We invite you to comment below and recognize your Leader and Co-Leaders, and let them know how much you appreciate all that they do.

Do YOU want to experience a free day of camp?  We're hosting a day of visual and performing arts at Camp Scoutshire Woods and Kamp Kiwanis for all girls who register for the 2009-2010 membership year by July 13.  We're painting, creating unique fashions, making jewelry and learning the hottest new dance, the Hannah Hoedown.  Do you adore adventurous water slides and wave pools?  We've got discounted water park tickets available for the early birds.  And you can earn patches!  Last but not least, your troop can get a jump start on the 2009-2010 Girl Scout year.  Come one, come all:  Register early for Girl Scouts!


Download the Early Registration Packet.

With the input of a Pathways Advisory Team and thousands of volunteers and council staff from across the country, Girl Scouts of the USA is developing Girl Scout Pathways--the ways girls and adults participate in Girl Scouting--that will align with the New Girl Scout Leadership Experience. GSUSA invites you to join us in shaping the future of Girl Scout Pathways, which we anticipate introducing to the Girl Scout community by fall 2010.


We encourage volunteers to participate in this survey, which will take approximately 15-20 minutes to complete. Please take this survey by May 15. We appreciate your participation!


To take the survey, click the link or visit http://www.questionpro.com/akira/TakeSurvey?id=967249.

On Monday, April 13th, the Girl Scouts will join the ranks of Warren Buffett, Condoleezza Rice, Michael Bloomberg, and other esteemed American leaders by ringing The Opening BellSM at the New York Stock Exchange (NYSE).


At 9:30 a.m., sixteen Girl Scouts ranging from Daisy-level (grades K-1) to Ambassadors (grades 11-12) will participate in The Opening Bell ceremony, joined by Girl Scouts of the USA's CEO Kathy Cloninger, Chief Marketing Officer Laurel Richie, and Chief Financial Officer Florence Corsello. 


"In these uncertain times, girl leadership and the Girl Scouts make a surefire investment," said Kathy Cloninger, GSUSA CEO. "Families need a safe and affordable place for their daughters to learn, grow, and have fun in the midst of a chaotic world. And the world desperately needs more girls and women in power solving the complex problems we face."


On the day of the event, a photo of the bell ringing will be on the nyse.com homepage as well as access to live and archived webcasts.


The event will include a live webcast starting at 9:29a.m. (EST) To view, visit: www.nyse.com.



Fox News Channel


When no one stepped in to take over Troop 1444, Fayette NC, after their leader was deployed to Baghdad, one dad volunteered to accept the challenge!  Keith Reagan has been leading Girl Scout troop 1444 for the last several months and so far the girls and parents have embraced him with open arms.


Tonight (April 10) Fox News channel takes a look at this unique Girl Scout troop. The story is slated to run on The Fox Report with Shepherd Smith, which airs at 7 p.m. EST. Regan hopes to inspire other dads to get involved.

cookieflipit.jpgOn Sale Now in the Shop: Scrapbook Kits!  Create your own Girl Scout memories or add stickers to your personal journal, cards or letters.  Included in the kit are:

·         Cookie Themed Scrapbook

·         Cookie Flip-it Sticker pack

·         Bookmark

·         Scrapbooking Fun Patch


It regularly sells for $24, but is on sale for $12.  That's a 50% discount! 

This offer is good while supplies last.  E-mail or fax your orders to the store using the Shop Order form. 

Many of you may be breathing a sigh of relief that the cookie sale is over, but the rewards are just beginning!  We planned to give out three Wii or iPod's this year however, there was only ONE box difference between the third and fourth place cookie sellers, so we're giving away four! 


Congratulations to everyone on a successful cookie sale, and thanks for all of your hard work!


Check out the top sellers, and be sure and congratulate them if you see them!


The top four council cookie sellers are:

              Lindsay D. from Troop 8400 at 2,009 boxes

              Corrin G. from Troop 9303 at 1,612 boxes

              Jennalyn S. from Troop 9205 at 1,441 boxes

              Hannah L. from Troop 9205 at 1,440 boxes 



The top troops are:


Category 1-10 Girl Scouts Selling:

1.           5 Girl Scouts from Troop 8455 (SU 807) sold 337 cases of cookies (4,044 Boxes).  Troop Leader: Becky James

2.           9 Girl Scouts from Troop 8309 (SU 807) sold 299 cases of cookies (3,588 Boxes).  Troop Leader: Dana Jones


Category 11-20 Girl Scouts Selling:

1.                   20 Girl Scouts from Troop 9341 (SU 923 ) sold 554 cases of cookies (6,648 Boxes).  Troop Leader: Debbie Kasper

2.                   18 Girl Scouts from Troop 9265 (SU 923 ) sold 544 cases of cookies (6,528 Boxes).  Troop Leader: Denine Richey


Category 20+ Girl Scouts Selling:

1.                   42 Girl Scouts Troop 9351 (SU 913) sold 950 cases of cookies (11,400 Boxes).  Troop Leader: Jessie Harris

2.                   40 Girl Scouts from Troop 9418 (SU 916 ) sold 894 cases of cookies (10,728 Boxes).  Troop Leader: Alison Simonton

Did you know that an impression is made within the first seven seconds of meeting someone?  Seven seconds is an extremely small amount of time, so you must rely on your etiquette skills and social graces to ace that first impression.  Having social grace means that you can maneuver through any situation with ease.


Girl Scouts will have the opportunity to work with the Kappa Delta sisters to earn the "Mannerly Me" etiquette patch.  Saturday, May 2 from 11 a.m. - 2 p.m. the Kappa Deltas at the University of South Alabama will host a Spring Tea for Girl Scout Juniors and Cadettes.  Girls will also make Kentucky Derby hats to bring home.  Lunch is included.


Grade Level: Juniors and Cadettes

Fee: $5 per participant (two adults free) Due to space constraints, please only bring enough adults to satisfy Safety Wise.

Minimum: 15 Maximum: 30

Dress: Sundress or Sunday best

Where: Kappa Delta house at the University of South Alabama campus.

Postmark deadline: April 21

P4043502.JPGWe certainly hope you were able to make it to our Annual Meeting in Montgomery on April 4.  It was a fun day, and a special time for sharing the great ideas our volunteers have.    View the slideshow from the event.


Just in case you weren't able to join us, here's a quick snapshot of the day's events.  Troop 9418 started the meeting with a flag ceremony, and Troop 9334 followed by singing an invocation.  Volunteers then attended their choice of three volunteer forums, which were designed to allow them time to share stories and ideas.  The forums centered around the following topics: Letting Girls Take the Lead, Sharing our Success Stories and Program Pathways and Journeys.


During a lunch of barbecue, potato salad, coleslaw and a fabulous cake made by one of our Opelika volunteers, Daisy troops 9780 and 9351 presented our wonderful lunch entertainment of special songs.  After lunch, Helen Alford, 1st vice chair of the board, presented special council scholarships and awards. Leah N. was awarded the Ellen Autrey Anderson Gold Award Scholarship and the Blanchard-Hinton Lifetime Scholarship, and Haley C. was presented the Loucretia Hollingsworth Scholarship.  


After the awards presentation, Board Chair Ellen Brooks called the business meeting to order.  After stewardship reports from the board and CEO, the delegates unanimously voted to approve the following new board members: Melissa George, Leslie Johnson, Alicia MacKnight, Becky Jo Peterson and Alisa Sumerville. 


Ms. Brooks ended the meeting by discussing the board's vision for the future and by thanking our volunteers for their hard work.


Enter the "Fun with Water" Watercolor Contest for Kids 6-18


Mobile Area Water & Sewer System (MAWSS) wants you to pour on the pictures! Submit your original watercolor to our "Fun with Water" Watercolor Contest.

Artwork should portray your favorite summertime activity involving water. All artwork submitted will be displayed at Bel Air Mall from June 16 - 26, 2009. Winners will be chosen from three different age groups: 6 -10, 11-15 and 16 -18.


The cool prize? Gift certificates to Bel Air Mall and winning artwork on permanent display at the Catherine Street location.  And, the Grand Prize Winner's organization (Girl Scouts!) will receive a gift certificate as well.


Entering is easy. Complete an entry form and submit your watercolor in person to any of the following locations:

     • Bel Air Mall Customer Service Center

     • MAWSS West Mobile location (4725-B Moffett Rd.)

     • MAWSS Main Office location (207 North Catherine St.)


Entry Deadline: June 12 • Winners will be notified by June 29

Please see official contest rules. Pick up an official entry form at any drop-off location listed above, or visit http://www.mawss.com/waterColorcontest.html.

joy_to_life_logo-092408.gifTroop 9469 would like to invite all Junior, Cadette and Senior Girl Scouts to visit Troop 9469's Girl Scout tent at the Joy to Life's Walk of Life in Montgomery.  The walk will be hold at the Cramton Bowl on April 18 between 8 a.m. to 11:30 a.m. The troop is working on their Girl Scout Silver Award.  Junior Girl Scouts can earn Walking for Fitness; Cadette Girl Scouts can earn In the Pink; and Senior Girl Scouts can earn both In the Pink and Women's Health IPAs.  Troop 9469 has put together easy ways to earn at least one badge for each age group and will also be recruiting new Girl Scouts.  For more information email Jean Bradley at jsbradley@knology.net.  For information on the Walk of Life, visit http://www.joytolife.org/walkoflife.php.

Location:      Fairhope Pier Park, Fairhope, Alabama
Date:            Saturday, April 25, 2009

Time:           10 a.m. to 7 p.m.

Admission:  Free


The 19th annual Mobile Bay area celebration of Earth Day is inspired by the worldwide Earth Day Network, which promotes environmental citizenship and steers environmental awareness around the world.


The Girl Scouts of Service Unit 824 will hand out information on how to "go green" and give out Green Ribbon Pins to remind people to go green.

There will also be environmental displays and exhibits, educational activities for children and adults plus live music and art. Fun for the entire family! Bring computers, old TV's, other electronics, used cooking oil and other aluminum, plastic and cardboard items for recycling.  

Channel One News reporter Toni DeAztlan recently interviewed troops from the new, more mod Girl Scouts. Though Toni's not a Girl Scout herself, we hope she earned an honorary badge, because we learned a lot of new things about the organization too.
Read some firsthand experiences from current Girl Scouts and watch the interview on ChannelOne.com at: www.channelone.com/life/girl-scouts.

Each of the six membership levels of the Girl Scout Leadership Experience takes girls on a journey--a voyage to someplace new, with adventures along the way. These adventures engage girls in exploring the three keys to leadership--discover, connect, and take action.


But it is not just what girls do, it is how they do it. Beneath the fun and excitement of the books, the work of our experts ensures that girls are growing and developing their leadership potential in ways that are meaningful to them. The activities in the Girl Scout Leadership Experience embody the girl led, learning by doing, and cooperative learning processes.


On their journeys, girls grow in their understanding of themselves, of each other, and of how they can work together to change the world for the better. Each journey culminates in awards that help the girls see just how far they've come.


Getting Started:  The Recipe for a Great Adventure
All you need is a sense of adventure to guide girls on a great journey. Check out these five simple steps to getting started:

  1. Boot up your computer and take a 10-minute walk through the Girl Scout Leadership Experience interactive resource at www.girlscouts.org/gsle. This bilingual interactive resource is designed for the busy volunteer. A guide talks you through each component of the Girl Scout Leadership Experience and provides clear definitions, illustrating how each piece is part of a well-researched, powerful, and change-making experience for girls.
  2. Kick off your shoes and sit down to relax. Yes, this is where the real fun starts. Read the (age-appropriate for your troop) girl journey book as if you were a girl just for the pleasure of it.
  3. Break out your accompanying adult guide and flick straight to the sample sessions at a glance two-page spread for a "bird's eye" view of how to bring journeys to life.
  4. Now that you know what is possible, invite the girls (and their parents) to use their imaginations to make the journeys real in ways that excite them (girl led). You do not have to do everything as exactly as laid out in the books. The books are a great resource with lots of room for creativity. Remember, the books just provide the vanilla scoop: The girls and you add the sprinkles!
  5. Now step back and watch how the girls, with your knowledge, support, and guidance, have enormous fun and a rewarding experience.

Throughout the journey--and even before--volunteer and staff members are there to offer crucial support and advice with learning opportunities. Don't hesitate to contact us: Teri Eversole at 251.344.3330, ext: 1302, and Cheryl Miller at 334.272.9164, ext: 2302.

The Atlanta Zoo has a special overnight just for Girl Scouts - Nightcrawlers

After the sun sets and Zoo Atlanta closes its gates for the evening, the fun is just beginning for NightCrawlers! During this overnight program, you and your students will discover what happens in the zoo after hours. With all Zoo programs aligned with the Georgia Performance Standards, NightCrawlers is perfect for groups from 1 -- 12 grade, and even adults! Each of the nine uniquely themed NightCrawler programs include a fun hands-on classroom component, an animal encounter with education animals, an exclusive tour of our Animal Nutrition Kitchen, and a nighttime scavenger hunt in the World of Reptiles. Guests sleep in climate-controlled facilities and wake in the morning to the sound of lions roaring! You and your girls will then enjoy breakfast, a guided tour of Zoo Atlanta, and a ride on the train or carousel. 

Whether your group is testing the water quality of our wetlands exhibit, tracking golden lion tamarins with the help of telemetry equipment, or learning to differentiate between a giant panda and a red panda by examining skulls, your students are bound to discover a new appreciation for science and environmental education on this nocturnal adventure!

To take your troop to spend the night at a Zoo Atlanta NightCrawler that your girls will never forget, please visit them online or call 404-624-WILD.


PLUS!  There's plenty of other fun activities to enjoy in Atlanta.  There are so many great things to see and do there, and it's an easy drive for most.  Other attractions are the Georgia Aquarium, Coca-Cola Museum, Puppet Theatre, Underground, International Market, CNN Center, Stone Mountain, etc.


If you are planning a trip with your troop please remember that troop leaders must complete Venturing Out.  This training guides you through planning and carrying out trips, meetings and activities outside your normal meeting place.    Please remember to follow the Safety Wise rules for trip planning, check your Leader Notebook for procedures, and make sure you have Permission Forms, Girl Health Forms, emergency contact info, etc., with you and ready for the trip.   


If you need help planning a trip, contact Cheryl Miller at 334.272.9164, ext: 2302.  

campadven5.jpgWe held a VERY successful Camping Adventures training at Chewacla on March 22 with 26 people in attendance.  We had a blast!  The moms were so thrilled that their daughters learned almost as much as they did. 


Chewacla State Park is an excellent location for this and it's a wonderful opportunity for leaders to check out a great destination where they can take their girls camping, canoeing, wading in the creek, playing under the waterfall, etc.  Some of these volunteers live in this area and they had no idea that this breathtakingly beautiful park was right under their noses.  It only costs a $1 per night for Scouts to stay there, too.


campadven8.jpgOne attendee wrote, "A big thank you to you (Cheryl) and your family for a fabulous camp weekend.  You made it look so easy!  You were so knowledgeable and so well organized.  We all thoroughly enjoyed ourselves!" 


Cheryl Miller would be happy to schedule a Camping Adventures training course if we have a group of 10 or so.   If you're interested, you can contact Cheryl at 334.272.9164, ext: 2302.

Cinco de Mayo is approaching, and we have a new patch program that would be the perfect activity for your troop - the Hispanic Heritage patch!  Hispanics are people from countries that have drawn their traditions and history from the country of Spain. There are many Hispanics in the United States today.  Select a Hispanic culture either from your own background or one that interests you, and complete an activity from Discover, Connect and Take Action.  Some of the activity choices include eating a Hispanic meal, interviewing a woman of Hispanic heritage and learning a traditional Hispanic story, folk tale or song.  This patch is appropriate for all Girl Scout grade levels. 

Download the Patch Book at www.girlscoutssa.org/forms/Program/patch_book.pdf.

Contact Mary Anne Brutkiewicz at 251.344.3330, ext: 1202 if you have any questions about patch programs.

Join us for the first annual Girl Scout Camporee! Camporee passes include a movie on the scoreboard, popcorn, camp-out in the outfield grass and a hearty breakfast in the morning. Plus, our event includes much more special benefits:

  • All Girl Scouts will be seated together!
  • Sign up for the pre-game parade!
  • Watch the video board for a special message just for us!
  • Post-game MAX Fireworks Spectacular
  • AND - it's CIRCUS NIGHT! Have a ball in the midway games area and see crazy performers on the concourse!

A limited number of tickets are available for both the game and Camporee. To order, complete the online order form by April 3.

Program: All Girl Scouts

Time: 1 - 4 p.m. Saturday, April 25
Location: 1st United Methodist, 100 East 4th Street, Prattville
We often think of being bilingual only if we speak Spanish or French or another foreign language, but what about sign language? Introduce your girls to the exciting world of sign by bringing them to this program developed just for Girl Scouts! Girls will learn to sign their name and even the Girl Scout Promise! The program will be lead by an expert signer and will help girls understand what it would be like to live in the world if they were unable to speak or hear. Girls will earn the Beauty of Sign Language patch. No Tagalongs. Due to lack of space, each troop is to provide only the number of adults needed to meet Safety-Wise requirements.

Cost: $5 per girl
Registration/Cancellation Deadline: April 14, 2009
Mail Registration to: Montgomery Service Center
Contact: Chris Shavers at 344.272.9164, ext: 2202

Minimum: 25 Maximum: 50

Learn an exciting dance that is sweeping the country! Clogging is an old favorite that has recently gained popularity on such shows as  MTV's "America's Best Dance Crew." Girl Scouts will learn to clog to the "Cotton-Eyed Joe" and other routines Saturday, May 16, from 1-3 p.m. at the Volunteer Center in Mobile. Girls will also enjoy clogging demonstrations and a talk on the history of clogging. Event fee is $2 and postmarked registration deadline is May 5. Girls are encouraged to wear country western clothes, so put your cowgirl boots on and join us for a cloggin' good time!

Contact: Mary Anne Brutkiewicz at 251.344.3330, ext: 1202



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