Category Archives: Cookies

Parker Troop Delivers 336 Packages of Cookie to Their Hometown Heroes

Submitted by Karen Grealy

Metro Denver

Parker

Seven Girl Scouts from Troop 66861 delivered 336 packages of Girl Scout Cookies to their Hometown Heroes. The girls decided to donate 48 packages of cookies to each of their individual schools.
They wanted to say thank you to the administrators, nurses, teachers, and custodial staff who have worked tirelessly to make in-person and remote learning possible this year.

These Girl Scouts have demonstrated perseverance through difficult times. They have withstood changes in school, Girl Scouts, and sports through the year. They are tough cookies and shining examples of what it means to be leaders in their community.

We want to hear how your girl is using her Girl Scout skills by taking initiative, caring for the community, and Girl Scouting at home. She can send in her story here.

Hearts Across the Miles: Thank you to Colorado Girl Scouts

Thank you to all the Girl Scouts who submitted APO addresses and delivered Hometown Hero Girl Scout Cookies as part of Hearts Across the Miles during the 2021 Girl Scout Cookie Program. This annual event sends cookies to deployed service members. This year, 5,092 packages of cookies were sent to 46 APO addresses, most of which were in Afghanistan, Kuwait, Iraq, and Korea, as well as some Navy ships. We received the following notes from soldiers who received the cookies.

This one is from Kuwait.

Hello Girl Scouts of Colorado,

We received your cookies. I wanted to say thank you on behalf of all of my Soldiers. I attached a picture of us with cookies, and a few pictures of my females doing awesome things. Maybe these photos can inspire some of them. We work with food and animals! We all love our job! Thank you again!

This one is from Saudi Arabia.

Hello everyone and greetings from Saudi Arabia.  I wanted to reach out and thank you for the wonderful package we received recently.  It was unexpected but much appreciated.  We are a veterinary team that inspects food and water and also handles working dog and feral animal issues.  We are a small team and you sent a large box so we are going to share with the Air Force kennel staff next door, so we don’t all get overweight from all of those cookies.  We appreciate the cookies and more importantly the support, prayers and your words of encouragement.  I have attached a few pictures of our team.  Please let everyone know how grateful we are; the Girl Scouts of Colorado, the Hearts Across the Miles group, the students at Slavens School, and everyone else in the Colorado area.  It is a happy coincidence, but our unit, the 993rd Medical Detachment is based out of Aurora, Colorado so it was an even more special to see a package from our home state.  Thanks again. 

We want to hear how your girl is using her Girl Scout skills by taking initiative, caring for the community, and Girl Scouting at home. She can send in her story here.

Cookies for the Heart Institute at Children’s Hospital

Submitted by Ellie B.

Metro Denver

Parker

This was Andie’s fifth year selling cookies. Selling during during a pandemic shifted her selling strategies. She decided to make door hangers for customers in the neighborhood to order cookies, instead of her usual door-to-door selling cookies in-hand on starting day. She brought flyers with the QR code for her site to school and handed them out to her classmates and school staff. She contacted previous customers by phone. She used her family’s social media sites to publish her site and send thank you messages for those who ordered. The new sales tactics were successful. She quickly met and surpassed her goal of 400 packages.

The best part was one of the neighbors saw on the door hanger that Andie was going to deliver donated packages to the Heart Institute at Children’s Hospital. The neighbor called to ask for more details, and not only did the neighbor make a large donation, she also told her small business group about it, and some of those businesses also made donations. In the end, 140 packages of cookies were delivered to the Heart Institute at Children’s Hospital, plus three fleece blankets Andie made. Andie’s troop also contributed an additional 256 packages through the Gift of Caring program!

We want to hear how your girl is using her Girl Scout skills by taking initiative, caring for the community, and Girl Scouting at home. She can send in her story here.

Good Samaritan Hospital: Hometown Heroes

Submitted by Erin Mulligan

Metro Denver

Arvada

On Saturday, March 27, 2021, Kira and Taylor represented Daisy Troop 65528 and delivered 20 packages of donated Girl Scout Cookies to their Hometown Heroes, the staff of Good Samaritan Hospital in Lafayette.

We want to hear how your girl is using her Girl Scout skills by taking initiative, caring for the community, and Girl Scouting at home. She can send in her story here.

Volunteer Spotlight: Jill Hoilman

Girl Scouts of Colorado is celebrating extraordinary volunteers throughout the state in honor of Volunteer Appreciation Month. Jill Hoilman from the Metro Denver region is a shining example of the wonderful role Girl Scout volunteers play in the lives of girls and our community.

GSCO asked Jill to answer a few quick questions about her volunteer experience. We hope you find her as inspiring as we did.

Why did you become a Girl Scout volunteer?

In 2000, my daughter became a Daisy. And as so many other moms before me, I was introduced to the Girl Scout organization. The following year the troop needed an assistant leader, so I joined at the Brownie level to help the troop out. In 2002, the main troop leader moved away and I was asked by the other parents to take the troop on. Wanting to give careful thought to the commitment and make sure the organization would be compatible with my Christian beliefs, I researched Girl Scouts of the USA. That year was the 90th anniversary and a new theme had just been released. It was “Girl Scouts, For Every Girl, Everywhere.” That really spoke to me. I loved the idea of a club that accepted every girl. As a public school teacher, I saw the value in bringing girls together outside of school work to camp, sing, do crafts, and develop leadership skills. As a parent, I welcomed the opportunity for my daughter to get to know girls from all walks of life and travel to meet girls in other countries. And now, 20 years later, I am still involved in providing the program to every girl, everywhere.

Tell us about your different volunteer roles as a Girl Scout.

My favorite role is that of troop leader. I have had 11 troops over the years and each of the girls has a place in my heart. I still hear from many of them. As an avid camper I have enjoyed roles of unit camp director, day camp organizer, and volunteer staff at council camps. In my unit, I have served as the treasurer, recruiter, large events coordinator, service unit manager, and currently, program director for 6th – 12th grade troops. At the state level, I was a charter member of the MCC. I served nine years as a national representative, attending GSUSA conventions in Georgia, Indiana, and Texas. I supervised the Colorado Girl Delegates at two of those conventions which allowed me to work with girls from all around the state and the nation.

One can hardly be in Girl Scouts for 20 years without being involved in the Cookie Program. I have held volunteer positions at the troop, unit, area, and state level. Many of the positions I held as a cookie team member no longer exist. Did you know that originally we set around a table at council with slips of paper from troops listing their booth sale request?  Then, we manually assigned the sales. I remember the first computer program that was written in-house at the council level to do this function. It was so exciting to leave the council office late that night  when it was completed, drive home, turn on our single home computer, and receive the test email to see if it was going to work! How far we have come to our fabulous programs of today. The Girl Scout organization continues to evolve with the times.

What have you learned as a Girl Scout volunteer?

I have been learning right along with the girls over the years as we have gone on field trips to the Dumb Friends League, a sewage plant, the bank, NREL, the fire station, a dam, a female mechanic, a news/weather station, homeless shelter, the emissions station, the post office, the sheriffs station, and a hospital ER. It gives me great satisfaction that the girls are expanding their knowledge with each of these experiences. Each badge develops a unique skill set and encourages lifelong learning.

I have also learned from the girls! My high school troops keep me up to date with technology. I got my first smartphone only because the girls promised to help me learn to use it. That skill allows me to keep in contact with troops in a way email does not, especially the high school girls. Honestly, I balked a bit when COVID-19 caused our troops to move to Zoom meetings. I considered that it might be time to retire since I was going to have so many new things to learn in using the virtual format. But, then I thought of the 55 girls I am currently working with and wondered what all those girls would do during the long months of the pandemic. So, I plunged in and with the help of my high school girls and some other leaders, got a Zoom account, and learned how to use its programs. After some trial and error, we have developed a format of girls picking up a supply sack from a table in my driveway a few days before the meeting. Then, on meeting day we get together on Zoom and open up the bags. The girls enjoy having hands-on items to work on as we earn badges together virtually. The younger troops have baked, painted, worked in clay, and earned a cookie badge. 23 of the unit Seniors completed the Sow What? Journey (including the Take Action project of decorating and filling Thanksgiving dinner boxes for 31 families). And, many are finishing up the Games Visionary badge. Both Senior and Ambassador troops earned the new Democracy badge. One of my Ambassador troops had a blast with the Photography badge and another focused on College Knowledge. We have supplemented with online resources from Girl Scouts of Colorado and a few girls have attended badge seminars. While we are all anxious to see each other again, we are persevering at home, together.

What do you hope girls have learned from you?

It’s important to me that the girls realize this is their club. They should set the mood and atmosphere, creating a safe, no judgement, place to meet and work together. Certainly, they need to be taught how to do this and it starts in Daisies. I begin by encouraging the girls to help each other. When one asks to have her orange pealed or juice box opened or craft assembled, I direct her to find a sister Girl Scout who has already managed to do it. So, we look around and see who is doing the job well. Then, we ask her to assist the girl who wants help. It is very affirming at six-years-old to be recognized as being good enough at something that an adult ask you to help another six-year-old. My job then as the adult is to make sure every girl is recognized and all play a part in the “helping.” As girls advance through the program, this skillset continues to develop through Take Action projects, leadership roles, PA Training, and Highest Awards, allowing girls to build confidence and character.

Want to nominate a volunteer for Girl Scouts of Colorado to spotlight? Please email Public Relations Director AnneMarie Harper at annemarie.harper@gscolorado.org. 

Cookie Box Innovation Challenge Powered by Arrow Electronics: Prize Announcement

Girl Scout Cadettes, Seniors, and Ambassadors are gearing up to become innovators to make the world a better place through the Cookie Box Innovation Challenge powered by Arrow Electronics! Together with Arrow Electronics, GSCO will be challenging girls to design a prototype that addresses a problem in our community and beyond using Girl Scout cookie packages and other recycled materials.

Register now and join us for the virtual kickoff on May 14, 2021!

Throughout the program,  girls will be asked to attend workshops and complete activities to get their inner innovators thinking and creating. At the end of the program, all girls who complete the activities will earn their Cookie Box Innovation Challenge patch and be invited to enter the Arrow Innovation Fair and compete for amazing prizes thanks to Arrow Electronics!

First Place: $250 and a ride in the Arrow SAM Car!

Second Place: A ride in the Arrow SAM Car!

There will be one first and second place winner in grades 6-8 and one first and second place winner in grades 6-12. The SAM Car rides will be in the Denver Metro area in late October/early November. More details will be announced prior to the Arrow Innovation Fair.

You might be asking, what on earth is the Arrow SAM Car? The Arrow SAM Car is the only car like it in the world – a Corvette modified with advanced electronics so that a former race car driver with a disability can drive the car at racetrack speeds using only head controls and voice commands. You’ll learn how advanced electronics can expand mobility for those who are disabled. You will sit in the co-driver’s seat while an Arrow engineer drives you around a closed course testing acceleration, braking, and sharp cornering. You’ll get to experience a world-class innovation firsthand in this once in a lifetime experience!

Questions? Email girlexperience@gscolorado.org.

We want to hear how your girl is using her Girl Scout skills by taking initiative, caring for the community, and Girl Scouting at home. She can send in her story here.

Volunteer Spotlight: Gretchen Solidum

Girl Scouts of Colorado is celebrating extraordinary volunteers throughout the state in honor of Volunteer Appreciation Month. Gretchen Solidum from Colorado Springs in the Pikes Peak region is a shining example of the wonderful role Girl Scout volunteers play in the lives of girls and our community.

GSCO asked Gretchen to answer a few quick questions about her volunteer experience. We hope you find her as inspiring as we did.

Why did you become a Girl Scout volunteer?

As a kid, I was a Girl Scout from Brownie thru Junior years and really enjoyed learning new things and loved going off to summer camp. The summer I was in third grade, I was so determined to earn my badges at home and marked up my badge book to see what I could do on my own with my mom signing off.  By earning the cooking badge, I really started to learn how to cook and it sparked a passion for baking that has continued to this day. I became a Girl Scout volunteer my daughter’s second year as a Daisy, three years ago. Our troop first formed with kindergarten/first grade girls and I had just changed jobs from Castle Rock to Colorado Springs and started to feel like I had more time to be involved with the troop.  Our previous TCM had just moved away and I was curious about how the cookie season worked and how our Daisies could become more confident speaking to others, making eye contact, and achieving their goals as individuals as well as a troop. It has been phenomenal to watch the more outspoken girls help the shy ones and the excitement they get when they make that sale or hit their goals. I’ve seen these achievements translate outside of cookies to how they interact in a group.

Tell us about your different volunteer roles as a Girl Scout.

I have been our troop’s TCM the past three years, a co-leader the past two years, and this year, my husband and I were also the westside Cookie Cupboard in Colorado Springs. I like numbers and seeing what we can do to increase our funds for the girls to go on new experiences and I enjoy helping others. Being a co-leader has been fun and I’m grateful for my other leader, Betsy Douglass, to share ideas to engage the girls and help them grow. The cupboard has been more fun than I realized with a unique opportunity to meet other leaders, hear their troop’s goals and past trips, and make connections for future planning and opportunities.

What have you learned as a Girl Scout volunteer?

To give the girls the encouragement and freedom to make decisions, make mistakes, and just have fun.

What do you hope girls have learned from you?

I hope that they understand that we all have something to contribute, something to say, and that we all have value. Our troop is still young and we hope that they continue to support one another and they see the potential that each of them has to make change. 

Want to nominate a volunteer for Girl Scouts of Colorado to spotlight? Please email Public Relations Director AnneMarie Harper at annemarie.harper@gscolorado.org. 

Volunteer Spotlight: Elisabeth Fries

Girl Scouts of Colorado is celebrating extraordinary volunteers throughout the state in honor of Volunteer Appreciation Month. Elisabeth Fries from the Western Colorado region is a shining example of the wonderful role Girl Scout volunteers play in the lives of girls and our community.

GSCO asked Elisabeth to answer a few quick questions about her volunteer experience. We hope you find her as inspiring as we did.

Why did you become a GirlScout volunteer?

I grew up with a single mom who worked fulltime, yet still made time to be my Girl Scout leader. Some of my favorite memories growing up were Girl Scout-related activities, such as going to camp, making crafts, and a song she wrote for us entitled “The Girl Scout Shuffle.” Now, that I have a daughter, I want to offer her the same experiences (and memories) my mom gave me. It seems to be working because Girl Scouts is by far my daughter’s favorite extracurricular activity, and she tells everyone she meets that I’m her leader! 

Tell us about your different volunteer roles as a Girl Scout.

I started the troop and lead it with another amazing woman, Miss Stacie. This year, I was also the fall product program manager and troop cookie manager.

What have you learned as a GirlScout volunteer?

I have learned that it’s the greatest volunteer position in the world! My Daisies have little hearts of gold and simply want to spread sunshine everywhere they go. They have reminded me of how beautiful this world is even in a time of uncertainty and fear.

What do you hope girlshave learned from you?

To be a sister to every Girl Scout! I want them to know they can do anything they put their minds to and Girl Scouts will always be a “safe space” for them.

Want to nominate a volunteer for Girl Scouts of Colorado to spotlight? Please email Public Relations Director AnneMarie Harper at annemarie.harper@gscolorado.org. 

Volunteer Spotlight: Lina Zimmer

Girl Scouts of Colorado is celebrating extraordinary volunteers throughout the state in honor of Volunteer Appreciation Month. Lina Zimmer in the Pikes Peak region is a shining example of the wonderful role Girl Scout volunteers play in the lives of girls and our community.

GSCO asked Lina to answer a few quick questions about her volunteer experience. We hope you find her as inspiring as we did.

Why did you become a Girl Scout volunteer?

I became a volunteer originally to be supportive of my daughter and to be able to attend meetings and events. As time went on, I realized that there was a real need for someone to be there for the girls in a leadership role.

Tell us about your different volunteer roles as a Girl Scout.

After my initial volunteer role, I decided to start my own troop due to the need in my area. In addition to currently managing two troops, I have filled the roles of a troop fall product program manager, service unit fall product program manager, troop cookie manager, and am a current member of the Pike’s Peak Region Cookie Committee. I’ve worked in the community to secure agreements with local businesses for council cookie sites, as well as locations for our troop’s My Sales. I enjoy building strong relationships in our community. 
What have you learned as a Girl Scout volunteer?
I’ve learned that Girl Scouts truly is a great program for young ladies to learn and grow into future leaders in a safe and supportive environment. I’ve also realized a tremendous amount of personal growth through my time with Girl Scouts.
What do you hope girls have learned from you?

I hope the girls have learned, and continue to learn, that putting in the work will always yield positive results. I also hope that they gain the confidence to know, in their hearts, that they can accomplish anything they set their mind to and that is all of our responsibility to make the world a better place.

Want to nominate a volunteer for Girl Scouts of Colorado to spotlight? Please email Public Relations Director AnneMarie Harper at annemarie.harper@gscolorado.org. 

Volunteer Spotlight: Taylor Lockwood

Girl Scouts of Colorado is celebrating extraordinary volunteers throughout the state in honor of Volunteer Appreciation Month. Taylor Lockwood from Windsor in the Northern & Northeastern CO region is a member of the Cookie Committee,  cookie delivery site volunteer, and Cookie Cupboard clerk. He works six days a week and then on his days off and at night, he helps his mother-in-law at the Loveland Cookie Cupboard.  He is a proud Girl Scout volunteer and so incredibly helpful, but most importantly, Taylor is a shining example of the wonderful role Girl Scout volunteers play in the lives of girls and our community.

GSCO asked Taylor to answer a few quick questions about his volunteer experience. We hope you find Taylor as inspiring as we did.

Why did you become a Girl Scout volunteer?

I became a Girl Scout volunteer because I was already helping in various ways as a non-volunteer with the organization. By becoming a volunteer, it allowed me to help out in other capacities that I otherwise wouldn’t have been able to do. Becoming a volunteer was a different area that I was able to serve my community and share my knowledge and skillset with.  

Tell us about your different volunteer roles as a Girl Scout.

My volunteer roles currently have been limited, but I am looking forward to being able to expand on those. My main role is to serve as a volunteer for the Windsor-area service unit. When I’m not helping out on the service unit level, I am working very tirelessly during the Cookie Program either helping run the Loveland Cupboard or being a secret booth shopper. Both of these roles allow me to be very active and engaged, not only with other volunteers and girls, but supporting our community relationships.

What have you learned as a Girl Scout volunteer?

Being a Girl Scout volunteer has taught me many things in a short time. I have learned that Girl Scouts is more than selling cookies and is a pathway for girls to be who they want to be and have a voice that can be heard. I have also learned that there is more to Girl Scout Cookies than being sold in front of a store and that it takes a large team effort to actually distribute cookies, not only across the region, but also to our local area troops.

What do you hope girls have learned from you?

I am hoping that I have been able to share and influence some valuable life skills to the girls that I have had the pleasure of volunteering with. Some of those valuable skills came from working with the Cookie Captains at the cupboard and teaching those girls how to operate and move cookies with a pallet jack, properly stacking the pallets of cookies. I helped the girls work to improve their customer service skills while being a secret shopper for booths. 

Want to nominate a volunteer for Girl Scouts of Colorado to spotlight? Please email Public Relations Director AnneMarie Harper at annemarie.harper@gscolorado.org.