Category Archives: Girl Scout News

Having a great Centennial Kickoff Celebration

Submitted by Mickki Langston

We know you’re as excited as we are about the Centennial Kickoff Celebration! More than 300 Girl Scouts and their families are coming together for two days of traditions, outdoor activities, and sisterhood. Pre-sales end July 20, so snag your tickets now to join in one or both days!

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Caption: Girl Scouts enjoying the outdoors at camp

We want you and your family to have a great time, so we have some suggestions for making this a great event:

  • Prepare for a summer, outdoor event with no shade. Bring umbrellas, hats, sunscreen, and lots of water. While our lunch-time food trucks will be selling water and other beverages, ensure you have enough to stay hydrated! Other comfort measures are encouraged, such as lawn chairs and blankets.
  • Lunch will be for sale via local food trucks during lunch on both days, and pizza will be provided to those who stay for dinner on Saturday night. You are encouraged to bring snacks and meals to support your family’s experience.
  • We’ll have nearly a dozen activity stations on both days, so be prepared to learn new skills and participate! Everyone who participates in the activities can earn the special badges as part of this event, which will be sent to participants 6-8 weeks after the event.
  • While we’ll have singing around the campfire and other fun Girl Scout traditions, don’t hesitate to bring SWAPS or other great stuff to share with your Girl Scout sisters.
  • Walk up registrations and all shop items are credit card only, so be prepared to get your extra Centennial Celebration swag and add any additional guests to your registration with your preferred plastic.

    More info can be found in our FAQ and event registration page. We are excited to see you this weekend!

Girl Scout Gold Award Project: Debra Zerr, Arvada, “Connecting & Protecting”

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What did you do for your Gold Award project?

Connecting & Protecting addressed the problem of the lack of connection between the military and the general public. People who have never served in the military themselves have such a hard time understanding and talking to the men and women in the military. My project made it so much easier to communicate and start closing the gap of understanding between the general public and the military.

My project involved 6 parts, most of which benefitted the US Marine Corps Memorial in Golden, CO.  A 430 foot pathway was installed and an event took place for the public to meet the local service members in October 2015. I also set up a maintenance group and created a manual to take care of Memorial. Then I gathered information and pictures of the Memorial to create a pamphlet telling others about the history behind the US Marine Corps Memorial.  Finally, I created a website, connectingprotecting.com, and Facebook Page (Connecting & Protecting) for the general public to have access to information about the military branches easily and for service members’ stories to be offered to the public.

How did you measure the impact your Gold Award project made on your target audience?

I had surveys at the Connecting & Protecting event at the Memorial for everyone who attended. Out of the 76 who attended, 95% walked away feeling more connected to the military and learned something new and fun.  There is also a survey on my website that visitors have taken. 10 total surveys have been taken so far and all came back with positive results. Finally, my website has a total of 13 positive comments as well.

How is your project sustainable? How will your project continue to impact after your involvement?

The pathway that I created at the Memorial is self-sustaining, it will be there forever. It will not need to be dug up and reconstructed. AMCI Wireless and the Memorial Board will be replenishing the pathway material as needed. I also created and provided a manual to maintain the Memorial and presented it to employees at AMCI Wireless. AMCI Wireless made a commitment to maintain the Memorial for a minimum of one year.

Since I am not graduating until Spring 2017 I decided to continue to maintain the website and Facebook page until I am ready to step away. If the time comes when I will no longer maintain the project’s website and page, I will find someone to replace me, and they will use the Standard Operating Procedures that I developed during my project.

What is your project’s global and/or national connection?

There are three national and global links within my project:

  1. I sent 300 folded Pocket Flags from the Pocket Flag Project to men and women stationed on the USS Ronald Reagan (CVN-76). With each flag there was a small card, with my website link and email address on it, so they can learn about my project.
  2. My project’s website is open to the world. I have over 20 viewers from other countries (Saudi Arabia, Canada, France, etc…) and 600+ viewers nationally. Many of my viewers share my website and Facebook page.
  3. Military men and women are stationed all over the world.

What did you learn about yourself?

When faced with obstacles, I learned to move around them. I would take a deep breath and stay positive. My family and two project advisers would listen to me and give me confidence to keep going. I would look for another way to do the activity or find the positives in the suggestion. I learned that creating and managing a website is a lot of work and time. It also improved my communication skills and my ability to write. Along with that, transcribing a recorded interview is very challenging, but the end result is well worth the time-consuming process. Lastly, interview questions need to be asked clearly and you have to really listen to the interviewee’s answers.

Staff Sergeant Carter, one of my project advisers, taught me that when you strive for success and face the toughest of challenges, you will be unstoppable. I understand what that means now and agree with him. Before this project, I did not think I was capable of accomplishing something this large and touching so many people’s hearts. I gained confidence and determination – the keys to get what you want.

How will earning your Gold Award impact you in the future?

I want to go to college to study fashion design. In college, I will improve the team building, event planning, and website designing skills learned in my project. In the highly competitive fashion designing industry, you have to be strong, persistent, and independent. My project improved these skills and made me recognize them, so I can use them in the future.

Why do you feel the Gold Award was an important part of your Girl Scout experience?

It’s the last highest award a girl can earn in Girl Scouts. I found it important in the last chapter of my journey to earn Gold because it’s like the last “hoorah” for me.  The end of a great story in my life.

**IMPORTANT NOTE: This blog represents only a small fraction of the hard work, dedication and requirements that go into earning a Girl Scout Gold Award. It is simply a brief summary, which is meant to inspire Girl Scouts to Go Gold in the future. For more information on earning your Gold Award, please email highestawards@gscolorado.org

Centennial Kickoff Celebration: Schedule of events

Centennial Social Graphic

The Centennial Kickoff Celebration is packed with great badge activities and special guests to help us celebrate 100 years of Girl Scouting in Colorado, and look forward to the next generation of making the world a better place. Two days will feature unique content for the whole family, with opportunities to earn up to 12 badges!

Check out our FAQ for more details about the event, and don’t forget to come prepared for an all day, outdoor event, with sunscreen, hats, snacks, and water bottles.

Saturday

9 a.m. – Registration opens

10 – 10:15 a.m. Formal Flag Ceremony being done by Honorary Troop 4 with National Anthem sung by Girl Scout Mackenzie Balagot

10:15 – 10:20 a.m Opening remarks by Girl Scouts of Colorado President & CEO Stephanie Foote

10:20 – 10:25 a.m. Special guest Colorado Springs Mayor John Suthers

10:25 – 10:45 a.m. Keynote address by Gabrielle Rochino of Think Like a Girl Engineering Kits

11 a.m. – 5 p.m. Badge activities start with a rotation schedule at one-hour increments.  

·         First Aid (with our partners at Ft. Carson)

·         Athlete (Spear throwing with our partner Reebok Spartan)

·         Outdoor Adventures (including Zorb bubble soccer, rock climbing exposure and drywater rafting)

·         GS Way

·         Animals (full-size horse/interactive displays)

·         Sewing

·         Artist (outdoor painting and comic artist)

 11 a.m. – Food trucks on site (who will sell lunches and refreshments. Attendees may bring own lunch, snacks, and are encouraged to bring water)

6 – 6:30 p. m. Actress portraying Juliette Gordon Low

6:30 p.m. – Pizza dinner

6:30 – 7:15 p.m. Musical performance by special guest Miguel Dakota

7:30 – 7:45 p.m. Retiring of the colors for the day

Sunday

9 a.m. – Registration opens

10 – 10:15 a.m. Formal Flag Ceremony being done by Honorary Troop 4

10:15 – 10:30 a.m. Investment/Rededication Ceremony

10:30 a.m. – 5:30 p.m. Badge activities start with a rotation schedule at one-hour increments. Badge activities today include:

·         First Aid

·         Outdoor Adventures (including Zorb bubble soccer, rock climbing exposure and drywater rafting)

·         GS Way

·         Animals (Meet miniature horses)

·         Archery

·         ASL Interpretation (Learn the Girl Scout promise in ASL)

·         Community Safety (with our partners from Red Cross)

·         Beekeeping

·         Aviation

·         Conservation

·         Artistry (Older girls learn about digital photography)

11 a.m. – Food trucks on site (who will sell lunches and refreshments. Attendees may bring own lunch, snacks, and are encouraged to bring water)

5:30 – 6 p.m. Formal Closing Ceremony

Centennial Kickoff Celebration: Entrepreneurial keynote speaker connects girls to engineering

Centennial Social Graphic

Submitted by Mickki Langston

For 100 years, girls in Colorado have been taking on new challenges, developing their leadership, and taking action in their communities to make the world a better place. Later this month, many of those girls and their families will be celebrating this long tradition at our Centennial Kickoff Celebration, as we look forward to the continued development of girls.

To highlight what girls can accomplish, we’ll be joined by Gabrielle Rochino, a 21-year old mechanical engineering student at Rowan University. Along with other young engineers, Gabrielle has co-founded Think Like a Girl Engineering Kits, a subscription service to provide engineering exploration toolkits to girls ages 6 and up which teach the fundamentals of engineering.

“This isn’t pink Legos,” explains another co-founder of the project, Megan DeGeorge. “We look at the main reasons why girls aren’t entering engineering – including a lack of female role models and misconceptions about what it is to be an engineer – and we address them. We connect girls to the real world of engineering and show them how engineering applications can be used in real life.”

“We also did a lot of research on the way girls learn and how they enjoy learning in certain ways, like storytelling and role playing,” adds co-founder Alexis Basantis.

Gabrielle is the featured keynote speaker at the Centennial Celebration, and will take the stage at 10:15 am on Saturday after our opening ceremony. We’re thrilled to hear more about her entrepreneurial venture to connect more girls to the world of engineering, and we’re confident you’ll love hearing from her. Learn more about Think Like a Girl Engineering Kits on their Facebook page, and check out the video of Gabrielle below:

Don’t forget to get your tickets for the Centennial Celebration, taking place in Colorado Springs on July 23 and 24. See our FAQ page for more details about the event and what to expect. Let us know you’re attending on our Facebook event page and remember to invite your girl scout sisters!

Footnote: Parts of this article were excerpted from a December 17, 2015 article on the Rowan University website.

 

Older Girl Advisory Board: Make your voice heard

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Submitted by Katie Singleton

Beginning in the 2017 membership year, Senior and Ambassador Girl Scouts will have the opportunity to apply to join a new Older Girl Advisory Board! This board will serve as the voice for Girl Scouts across Colorado. Advisory Board members will have the opportunity to provide direct feedback to staff regarding current and future programming and events, participate in leadership and professional development workshops, and connect with the GSCO Board of Directors.

Board members will participate in monthly web meetings and attend four camp retreats held at Tomahawk Ranch each year. The first camp retreat is scheduled for December 20-21, 2016. Transportation assistance may be available.

Girls interested in participating in this Advisory Board are invited to submit their application at https://gscolorado.formstack.com/forms/ogab2016. All applicants must provide contact information for two references who will be emailed a link to an online reference form. All applications and reference forms are due by September 5, 2016.

More information can be found at www.girlscoutsofcolorado.org/ogab. Contact Katie Singleton at katie.singleton@gscolorado.org with any questions.

Top Sellers celebrate at Glenwood Caverns

154 Girl Scouts and guests gathered on Saturday, June 25, 2016 at Glenwood Caverns in Glenwood Springs to celebrate “cookiebosses” who sold 750 packages or more of Girl Scout Cookies. Top Sellers and their guests enjoyed the Caverns’ many rides, tours, and attractions while also being treated to a Fajita Bar lunch, during which the girls were presented with their Top Seller medallions by the GSCO Product Sales staff. The Glenwood Caverns event was attended by four of the state’s top 17 sellers for the 2016 sale.

 

Join Miguel Dakota around the campfire at the Centennial Kickoff Celebration

Submitted by Mickki Langston

Signing is a joyous part of the Girl Scout experience. For many girls, learning and signing songs is one of the most memorable experiences at camp. Singing Girl Scout songs brings us together and weaves tradition throughout the many generations of Girl Scouts.

The first Girl Scout song book was published in 1925! Singing can be used to open and close meetings, punctuate ceremonies, and make work more pleasurable.

Here’s a great photo of Senior Girl Scouts singing in 1959.

Singing

President Obama and the First Lady recently joined Girl Scouts in singing around a campfire.

Singing Obamas

If you’re looking for great resources for Girl Scout songs, check out the Girl Scout Pocket Songbook for purchase from the GSUSA shop, and the many songs found on the Girl Scouts Songs youtube channel.

Not everyone has to have a songbird voice to have a good time, however. That’s why we’re excited Miguel Dakota, a Colorado singer who was a finalist on America’s Got Talent, is joining us for the Centennial Celebration on July 23, 2016. He’ll be singing around our campfire at 6:30 p.m. Here’s a video of Miguel covering “Do I Wanna Know” in the Garden of the Gods.

The event is less than a month away, so use this link to get your tickets now: http://bit.ly/1snj0uw 

Spread the word to all your Girl Scout sisters using our Facebook event: https://www.facebook.com/events/1786101614959355/ 

See you around the campfire!

Meet the GSCO Recruitment Team

 

Mickki Langston

Mickki Langston- Recruitment Director

Mickki Langston leads growing the Girl Scouts of Colorado membership as our Recruitment Director. Mickki first joined GSCO in October 2015, by getting her own daughter involved as a new Daisy. Prior to Girl Scouts of Colorado, Mickki has supported her Colorado community as a member of the Denver Sustainable Food Policy Council; the founder and executive director of Mile High Business Alliance; and a youth mentor via Colorado Youth at Risk. In her spare time, Mickki makes homemade soap and other bath products, writes local news stories for the Wash Park Profile, and enjoys snuggling with her two aging pets, Lulu and Max.

Elba Barr serious

Elba Barr – Recruitment Specialist

Elba’s primary role is to share with girls the marvels and endless possibilities of Girl Scouts as a recruiter in the Pikes Peak region. Elba grew up a Girl Scout in Vermont and loves being the troop leader for her daughter’s troop.  Elba started with GSCO in July 2015 after retiring as a Senior Intelligence Analyst for the U.S. Army. She and her husband have three kids– two human and one fur. “I love being part of organization that has been innovative and a safe place for girls for more than 100 years” she wrote.

Cricket Hawkins

Cricket Hawkins– Team Lead, Mountain Communities

Cricket joined Girl Scouts of Colorado in December 2010 never imagining the scope of her responsibilities would be so vast. She orchestrates all activities in our Mountain Communities as Team Lead and is the mastermind behind recruitment, volunteer support, and community visibility. Although she works remotely from 10,000 feet high in the Rockies, her daily connections with her volunteers and membership is limitless.  Enthusiasm, inspiration, passion, and many years of professional and volunteer experience are her tools for cultivating today’s Girl Scouts and tomorrow’s leaders.  When not communicating with members or driving to the far reaches of her region, Cricket can be found gardening, painting landscapes on old windows, and hiking with her four-legged best friend Sage.

Hilary Martin

Hilary Martin- Recruitment Specialist

From Craig to Telluride, Fruita to Glenwood Springs, Hilary is out in the community recruiting and promoting Girl Scouts across the Western Slope.  Hilary started in June 2014 after careers in television news and law enforcement dispatch. Hilary was a Girl Scout herself while growing up in Orange County, California. She loves spreading the message of Girl Scouts and growing membership across our diverse state.

Jennifer Raymond 

Jen Raymond- Recruitment and Volunteer Support Specialist

Jennifer Raymond comes to us with a background in Girl Scouts- she used to work for Chaparral/GS New Mexico Trails council as a Membership Development Director, leaving in 2009. She and her husband (and their kids) have found their way back to Durango. They couldn’t believe it when they saw the job posting – it was meant to be! Jennifer Raymond comes to us with a background in Girl Scouts- she used to work for Chaparral/GS New Mexico Trails council as a Membership Development Director, leaving in 2009. She and her husband (and their kids) have found their way back to Durango. They couldn’t believe it when they saw the job posting – it was meant to be!Jen Raymond came to us in January 2016 with a background in Girl Scouts.  She worked for five years at Chaparral/GS New Mexico Trails council as a Membership Development Director, leaving in 2009. Since then she has continued her career with nonprofit, community serving organizations such as Habitat for Humanity, Adoption Exchange, and Capacity Builders. Jen’s husband was transferred to Cortez from Farmington, New Mexico. Shortly after, she found the job posting for Girl Scouts (serving southwest Colorado) and they took the plunge to move. She was so excited for this opportunity to be involved with Girl Scouts again.  Between Jen and her husband they have seven kiddos, two dogs, and a naughty cat. “We have quickly learned that we love hiking and enjoying the beauty of our new home state” she wrote. Jen loves being able to help provide the opportunity to girls and adults to share in the awesome Girl Scouts experience.  “There’s nothing better than seeing a girl who really is realizing her potential through the guidance of one of our amazing volunteers”.

Sarah Scalise

Sarah Scalise- Recruitment Specialist

Sarah works closely with community members and adult volunteers in Jefferson County to share opportunities with future Girl Scouts! As a girl member she loved camping trips and still enjoys lifelong friendships with her fellow Girl Scouts. Sarah returned as an adult member in 2012 (not including her year as Girl Guide in the UK) and ran a multi-level troop in south Chicago. After recruiting all of her friends to participate, Sarah realized it was time to apply her Girl Scout Leadership Experience to her career and began working for GSCO as a Recruitment Specialist in August 2015. Sarah is also a published author. Her work examines role models in popular culture and how young women struggle with themselves to achieve bodily acceptance. In addition to a love for reading and writing, Sarah is actively involved in Denver social justice organizing which refuels her passion for making the world a better place!

Christine Slomski

Christine Slomski – Recruitment Specialist

Since 2008, the Girl Scouts of the USA has captured Christine’s heart, but it wasn’t until August 2015 that the opportunity came to join the movement as a staff member! As a GSCO Recruiter in south-metro Denver, Christine enjoys spreading smiles and empowerment by sharing the mission of Girl Scouts at schools and community events. Christine is passionate to be of service to women and support women’s issues in the realm of health, well-being, and personal empowerment, so naturally she’s very proud to help Colorado’s girls become tomorrow’s leaders by way of Girl Scout programming! When she’s not in the field meeting with potential Girl Scout members, Christine enjoys learning about art, faraway places, holistic nutrition, and eastern philosophy. You’ll also find her at First Friday art walks, sauntering along trails in Denver parks, or sharing a cup of local chai or kombucha in the company of a good friend (or a great book) in Denver or Boulder.  There are no limits to an empowered woman with big dreams… And that starts with our girls. Watch out, world!

Carmen Valdez

Carmen Valdez, Recruitment Specialist

Carmen helps spread the word about Girl Scouts and works to recruit new girl and adult members in Pueblo and southeastern Colorado. She also organizes, promotes, and hosts adult recruitment events. Carmen is married with two children and in her spare time, she enjoys reading and sci-fi fandoms like Star Wars and Stark Trek.

JORDYN PIC

Jordyn Walker, Recruitment Specialist

As a Recruitment Specialist for Denver-metro, Jordyn loves spreading the word about the Girl Scout Leadership Experience. Jordyn started with GSCO in 2015 as a Seasonal Recruitment Specialist in the Pikes Peak region. When her time as a seasonal employee expired, she was transferred to Denver. Jordyn’s work now covers 10 school districts and her demographics span from the city of Denver to the rural plains. She loves how the Girl Scout Leadership Experience is adaptable to ALL girls. Jordyn was a Brownie Leader and loves to explore new mountain ranges and take long road trips!

** Note: This in no way is the extent of all of their responsibilities. Rather, a snippet to help you direct your questions appropriately. 

 

Top Sellers celebrate at the Marriott Hotel in Denver

57 Girl Scouts and their families gathered on Saturday, June 25, 2016 at the Marriott Hotel in the Denver Tech Center to celebrate “cookiebosses” who sold 750 packages or more of Girl Scout Cookies. Top Sellers and their families enjoyed a sit down, plated dinner during which the girls were presented with their Top Seller medallions by the GSCO Product Sales staff. Once dinner and the ceremony were done, girls danced to music by DJ Phil Soderborg, who has been providing entertainment and music at Top Seller events for years. This year’s dinner was also attended by Ciara Marie Quiogue Leal, the state’s top seller for 2016. She sold 7,118 packages!

Girl Scout Gold Award honored at Denver fundraiser

Submitted by Kay Shaw, Girl Scouts of Colorado Gold Award Mentor

Guests at the annual Tablescapes conducted by the Assistance League of Denver got the opportunity to see a table that honored the highest award in Girl Scouts, the Gold Award.  Tablescapes was held Thursday, June 9–Saturday, June 11, 2016 at the Bosworth House in Denver.  This event is a fundraiser for the Assistance League.

Every year,  members of the league compete to design tables and share them with the public.  This year, Michelle Krawchik, a member of the League, and Girl Scout, with the help of Kay Shaw, a member of the Denver Gold Award Committee, designed a table to highlight the 100th anniversary of Girl Scouts’ highest award.  The table decorated in gold and white with a bouquet of yellow flowers,  had many badges girls might have achieved, as well as a sash, Girl Scout Cookies, an autograph book, a calendar, and uniform from the 1960’s, the time in which Kay received her award.  At the time Kay received her award, it was known as the Curved Bar.

In addition to the  15 tables  that had various themes,  guests were allowed  an opportunity to shop at various boutique stores.  After viewing the tables,  participants were treated to a lovely tea.  A Denver Girl Scout troop helped the League by cleaning tables and offering tea.   This event is an interesting  celebration that allows the community an opportunity to participate in fun activities as well as donate to the Assistance League which provides funds to help school children and senior citizens.

A great time was had by all!