Girl Scouts of Southern Alabama: June 2011 Archives

2011 Starter Kits are available for purchase through the council shops!
2011 Starter Kits InfoPurchase a starter kit and receive a free Girl Scout bag (while supplies last).  Call 800-239-6636, ext. 2602 or visit us in Mobile or Montgomery to order one!
liz_brent.jpgWe have had the chance this summer to spend time at both Camp Scoutshire Woods and Kamp Kiwanis watching those who attend have a great time!   We have seen the girls do fun things like learning to ride on horseback and mastering the intricate balance of a stand up paddle boat.    Because of a successful cookie sale, we were able to purchase a number of new boats, paddleboards and other equipment to enhance the camp experience for our girls. 

Although in February KampKIwanis Paddleboardsour camp numbers were ahead of where they were last year, when it came time for camp, the number of campers actually declined from last year.  We have been wondering why this has
happened, and ask that, if you have ideas or suggestions, please let us know.  We assume many girls are saving their cookie bucks for 100th anniversary trips, but we are trying to determine if there are other things we can do to attract more girls to camp.  Kamp Kiwanis has five air-conditioned buildings, so beating the heat is easy to do.   There is a new camp director there this year Dana Jones, who is a familiar face to many and an experienced service unit manager from Citronelle.   The focus of that camp is aquatics, archery, environmental awareness and science.   Anna Marie Phelps returned as the long-time camp director at Scoutshire Woods.   Last year they built a huge teepee, and this year they intend to build a larger one.   We had open slots in the Camp Scoutshire horse camps, which is a very unusual thing, so we are wondering how to increase our enrollments.  If you have thoughts or suggestions, please let us know at   Thanks.
Our girls love to take part in choosing cookie recognition choices -- and we love to hear from them!  Please encourage them to vote, either at a meeting or on their own.  We hope to get input from many girls as possible to be sure the cookie recognitions are the best they can be.  Click below on the image to vote (your input is encouraged, too!).  The deadline is July 13, so vote vote vote!

Coming this Fall! The Girl's Guide to Girl Scouting

Where can a girl find exciting new badges, the 100th Anniversary handbook, information on bridging and Bronze/Silver/Gold Awards, and much more all in one place? In The Girl's Guide to Girl Scouting, of course! There is a Girl's Guide for each level of Girl Scouts from Daisies to Ambassadors.

The Girl's Guide features robust skill-building badge activities, updated and new awards, information on Girl Scout history and traditions, and -- most of all -- lots of fun!

With this fall release, girls can grow as leaders and build new skills with a complete National Program Portfolio: Journeys + The Girl's Guide to Girl Scouting!

Take a peek. Let Brownie Elf tell you more...

See the Anatomy of a Badge, if you'd like something to print and share this exciting news with your troop!

liz_brent.jpgCookies, cookies, we have summer resident camp rolling, all sorts of fun things going on, we are planning for cookie season. Didn't we just finish that? We always try to work to improve the cookie sale from your end. It takes a great deal of work and effort. It provides 75% of our income, so it is important to try to have all the pieces and parts working as smoothly as possible. The past 2 years, some Girl Scout councils have moved to a direct sale. That is a return to what many of your likely experienced when you were a Girl Scout. In this sale, as contrasted to our current taking orders, you have the cookies when the sale begins, rather than returning to deliver the cookies you have them for the entire sale. We would appreciate your feedback on this, both pros and cons. Those Girl Scout councils who have moved to this type of sale find it easier to manage because there is one less step in the process.

We will work to expand the delivery of cookies to the troop level throughout more of the council. We received very positive feedback on this. We will be asking both volunteers and girls to vote on their favorite recognitions. We are discussing adding a volunteer recognition component to the program, since we see you out moving the boxes, coordinating the monies, and doing lots of work. We would appreciate your feedback on that. Any feedback can be sent to We appreciate your input on these decisions.

liz_brent.jpgWe have re-established the Mariner troop, which has been inactive for many years.  This group of girls enjoys boating and being on the water.    Their main emphasis is on learning to sail and honing their sailing skills.   Last summer, the older girls raised funds all year and took a weeklong sailing trip down the Florida Keys.   What an experience!    Each spring and fall they have a sailing weekend; sometimes we use the Florida Panhandle facilities on Perdido Bay, other times we use Kamp Kiwanis.   I heard the sailing weekend this spring at Kamp Kiwanis had 31 participants, and Lake Martin was beautiful with all our boats out on it.   We have been fortunate that, as the word has spread, we have received donations of larger sailboats that people no longer use.
Standing rigging (on the left) and running rig...

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The Tukabatchee Boy Scouts from Montgomery gave us a Capri and Flying J.   Another person gave us a Flying Scot, which is a really neat little boat.   Two weeks ago, we had a physician give us a 27-foot O'Day sailboat that sleeps 6.   After the sailing resident camp this summer, we will work on getting the new sailboat available, so, if your troop wants a different experience, they can spend the night on a sailboat in the cove at Kamp Kiwanis.  Sailing is a lifetime sport and one that provides a great deal of fun and energy.   Hopefully, those girls who want to explore a different outdoor sport will consider joining the Mariners.   They are working on going out on the water more often, in addition to these structured opportunities.   For additional information, contact Liz Carnahan at   There are still slots open for the sailing resident camp, but you must be able to swim and comfortable canoeing.

_9460091935.jpgGirl Scouts of Southern Alabama and Girl Scouts of North-Central Alabama inducted a bi-partisan delegation of legislators into the Alabama Honorary Girl Scout Troop 1912 on Thursday, June 2.  The ceremony took place in the Capitol Auditorium.

"In honor of Girl Scouts' 100th Anniversary, this honorary legislative troop is called Troop 1912 for the year Girl Scouting was founded," said Trish Coghlan, chief executive officer for the Girl Scouts of North-Central Alabama. "Troop 1912's purpose is to be the voice for girls in the legislature. We're excited to have a diverse group representing Alabama's girls."

Senate members include Linda Coleman (D), Priscilla Dunn (D), Vivian Figures (D), Mark Keahey (D), Hank Sanders (D), Bobby Singleton (D), Harri Anne Smith (I) and Cam Ward (R).

House of Representatives members include Mike Hubbard, Speaker of the House (R), Alan Baker (R), Elaine Beech (D), Barbara Boyd (D), Terri Collins (R), Merika Coleman (D), Paul DeMarco (R), Juandalyn Givan (D), Laura Hall (D), Jamie Ison (R), Yvonne Kennedy (D), Mary Sue McClurkin (R), Joseph Mitchell (D), Mary Moore (D), Becky Nordgren (R), Patricia Todd (D), Mark Tuggle (R), Pebblin Warren (D), Kurt Wallace (R) and April Weaver (R).

Additionally, Representative Paul DeMarco presented a resolution recognizing June 2 as Girl Scout day and the formation of Troop 1912.

For more photos, click here.

Pictured L-R: Kurt Wallace, Mary Sue McClurkin, Jamie Ison, Paul DeMarco, Terri Collins, Barbara Boyd, Elaine Beech, Cam Ward and GSSA Board Member Marian Loftin
Looking for something to do this summer? We've got even more events just for you! Girls may register for events individually, or with a troop. The Event Registration Form should be submitted along with payment for the event. Girls who are not already Girl Scouts will also need to submit the Girl Scout Registration Form with the $12 annual membership fee.

Swimming, games, hiking and campfire snacks! Bring a sack lunch for a picnic!
Who: Girl Scout Daisies, Brownies, Juniors, Cadettes, Seniors and Ambassadors
First session: Wednesday, June 22, 2011
Registration Deadline: June 20
Second session: Wednesday, July 20, 2011

Registration Deadline: July 18
Where: Holy Ground Battlefield Park, Hayneville
Time: 9AM-3PM
Cost: $12/girl (includes snack)
Contact: Jennifer Sakey, 334-272-9164, ext. 2104

Cool off this summer as we celebrate Christmas in July!  Crafts, snacks and movies that combine summer sun and winter snow.
Who: Girl Scout Daisies, Brownies, Juniors, Cadettes, Seniors and Ambassadors
Saturday, July 16, 2011
Where: Girl Scout Volunteer Center, Montgomery
Deadline to Register is July 11

Contact: Jennifer Sakey, 334-272-9164, ext. 2104


Join us at camp for fishing contests and water play!  Bring a picnic lunch, your swimsuit, fishing pole and bait.

Who: Girl Scout Daisies, Brownies, Juniors, Cadettes, Seniors and Ambassadors
Saturday, July 30, 2011
Camp Humming Hills, Elba
Deadline to register is July 25

Contact: Jennifer Sakey, 334-272-9164, ext. 2104
GS_100TH_burst400px.jpgWe know it's too hot to actually cook, but please don't forget to send in your recipes for our 100th anniversary cookbook!  Our goal is to have 200 recipes in this special book, and right now we only have 50, so we need your help.  You may say you don't cook, but almost everyone has a special recipe from their mother, grandmother or a special friend they can share.
To enter your recipes or those of your troop, simply go to:  Our login is girlscout and our password is girls. Please make sure to enter your name and/or your troop number/location, so everyone knows who you are and where you're from.
Once you've entered your recipes, please continue to spread the word to other volunteers and friends in the community about this exciting project.
liz_brent.jpgYesterday, I had the privilege of listening to Jeno James, previously with the Miami Dolphins; speak to a group of Girl Scouts who live in public housing communities in Montgomery.  His message was clear and poignant; never listen to the voices that say you can't do something.  

From age 4, Jeno was determined to become an NFL football player. He was told he wasn't from the right place and was repeatedly told that he would never make it.  But, Jeno told the girls, he didn't listen to those voices. He listened to the ones of encouragement, who shaped his confidence in his own gifts and talents.   Not only did Jeno James have a successful career at Auburn University, but he was an offensive tackle in the NFL for 9 years, playing for the Carolina Panthers (in the Super Bowl, no less) and the Miami Dolphins.   Jeno's message to the girls is that you are more than enough - to be what you want to be, accomplish the goals you set out for yourself, and follow your dreams. Something we all should remember.

Clean drinking water...not self-evident for ev...

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In celebration of World Water Monitoring Day (WWMD), Girl Scouts can receive a free water test kit while earning credit toward the Get with the Land or Water Drop patches just by registering for both WWMD and National Public Lands Day! Registration is free for both programs.

To receive a kit, troops must register with WWMD and indicate that they are affiliated with National Public Lands Day (NPLD), or register with NPLD and indicate that they are affiliated with WWMD. Simply checking the respective boxes while registering can do this.  Kits will be shipped between July and September while supplies last.

Questions? Contact Jacqueline Connell with the Water Environment Federation at with questions.

In 2006, Girl Scouts of the USA (GSUSA) developed a partnership with World Water Monitoring Day (WWMD). Through the WWMD program, Girl Scouts learn about the quality of their local waters by testing for dissolved oxygen, pH, temperature and turbidity (or clarity). These parameters represent basic elements that help determine water quality. Girl Scouts then submit their data into the worldwide database, where it is included in the annual WWMD report produced at the end of monitoring activities performed each year.

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Looking for something to do this summer? We've got events just for you! Girls may register for events individually, or with a troop. The Summer Slam Event Registration Form should be submitted along with payment for the event. Girls who are not already Girl Scouts will also need to submit the Girl Scout Registration Form with the $12 annual membership fee.


The first 50 girls to register for each event get a free summer slam T-Shirt! (one per girl)


Girl Scouts who bring a friend who is not already a Girl Scout will receive a "Make New Friends" patch!


To register, send the Summer Slam Event Registration Form to 3483 Springhill Avenue, Mobile 36608.


Pajama Jam Skate Party Sleep Over

Thursday, June 16, 8 p.m. - Friday, June 17, 7:30 a.m.
Dreamland Skate Center, Three Notch Road, Mobile
Cost: $10 includes Pizza, Drinks, Snacks, Skating, Movie, Face Painting, Nail Painting and Talent Show! Plus wear your favorite PJ's!
Registration Deadline: Friday, June 10


SWIMber Party at the YMCA

Friday, July 8, 6 p.m. - Saturday, July 9, 6:30 a.m.
Chandler-Hearin YMCA on Downtowner, Mobile
Cost: $10 includes Dinner and Snacks, Swimming till Mid-night, Activities and Crafts
Registration Deadline: Friday, July 1


Amazing Race at the Municipal Park

Saturday, July 23, 9 a.m. - 1 p.m.

Langan Municipal Park, Ziegler Blvd. Mobile
Cost: $5 per person - family and friends are invited to participate.
Lunch and Drinks will be provided.

Registration Deadline: Friday, July 15

Girl Scouts of the United States of America

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Get a leg up on your busy fall schedule, by registering now for the 2011-2012 membership year! Not only will you have one less thing to think about as school begins, but you'll also keep girls involved in Girl Scouts another year.

You may order the FREE Early Bird patches for all girls registered on or before July 1, 2011. Patches will be ordered for the number of girls indicated below plus up to TWO additional patches for adult leadership. The form (linked below) must accompany your troop registrations when they are submitted to the council.

Plus! The First 100 leaders to register 75% of her troop BEFORE July 1st will receive a limited
edition 100th Anniversary Tablecloth.

Get all of the details and links to forms in the Early Bird Packet: 2011earlybird.pdf
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liz_brent.jpgThe following, which was sent to a staff member last week, reminds us why we LOVE our volunteers.  I listen to lots of volunteers who talk about how their jobs are sometimes frustrating due to things like chasing parents, dealing with transportation issues or waiting for a girl to be picked up.  But I think Marcy Perdue articulates beautifully why each and every one of you is an important, wonderful human being.


A few days ago I was asked why I continued to be a Girl Scout leader. Yes, it is quite a task to undertake, I thought. Yes, sometimes the paperwork and the daunting task of keeping track of cookie money (and all the other money) is enough to make me want to run for the hills. Organization is not my strongest suit. Nor is checkbook balancing, because it involves math. I work full time at a job I love, so, at times, there are not enough hours in my day to do what needs to be done at work and at home, much less planning for a meeting or arranging a trip. Some months, it seems like every weekend the troop has something to do! It might be easier to step back. To say I have had enough. To go Juliette and take my daughter with me.

I thought to myself -- I stay because I want my daughter to get all that she wants out of Girl Scouting. I see myself being a leader until she no longer wants to participate, which, I hope, is never. You see, I was a Girl Scout, too. And my mother was my leader most of the time. And, at the end, it was me and her. My troop of one. But what I did and where I went! I participated in service projects at the nursing home. I made wreaths for the ceremony at the Confederate Memorial. I made commercials for Girl Scout cookies. I gave speeches. I learned about public relations and the media as a Spotlight Girl. I flew across the country to attend a Wider Opportunity at National Center West in Wyoming. I earned the Gold Award. Perhaps that is why I do it. Because I had an excellent example in my mother, and I want to be the same supportive mother and leader for my own daughter.

But a little later that same day, I passed one of my Girl Scouts in the Middle School hallway. She expressed regret that we were about to have our last "official" meeting of the Girl Scout year. Not that I don't make sure we meet a couple of times for fun in the summer, mind you, but there it was. The answer I hear in my head every single time I think of stepping down to simplify my life: being a Girl Scout leader matters. It matters to me. It matters to the parents, most of whom help me in all sorts of ways. And, most importantly, it matters to the members of my troop, who come back for the enriching experiences Girl Scouting offers every year.

Is it a challenge? Absolutely. As they grow into young women, I am certain that keeping them engaged will be harder and harder. But I hope that it becomes more and more of a partnership, as it should -- a partnership in which I serve as a mentor and guide, to help them accomplish what it is they want from Girl Scouting. I want for them whatever it is they want. Do they want to focus more on trips? Would they like to earn a Silver or Gold Award?

I watch and wait for the leadership skills I see just bubbling under the surface. I know that for these girls, the experiences that they have over the next few years are going to be what shapes them into who they become, what they do, and where they go. I do not see my role as one exerting power over them; I see it as facilitating their learning that they have the power to make the choices that will impact them now and forever. The choices that matter.

Which is why I will remain a Girl Scout leader: to do something that matters.



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