Category Archives: Girl Scout News

12 Leadership Secrets Inspired by the Most Adventurous Disney Princess Yet

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From Girl Scouts of the USA (GSUSA)

Girl Scouts of the USA (GSUSA) and Disney Channel teamed up to inspire girls and their families to practice leadership! The collaboration brings GSUSA’s focus on leading like a G.I.R.L (Go-getter, Innovator, Risk-taker, Leader) TM, the Girl Scout way, and Disney Channel’s recently launched animated television series Elena of Avalor into action with the debut of The Elena of Avalor Leadership Guide by Girl Scouts and Disney Channel.

GSUSA has been helping girls take the lead for more than 100 years, and we know leadership isn’t about who you are, but what you do. That’s why GSUSA joined forces with Disney Channel to change the conversation around leadership and help girls see that everyone has the potential to lead.

Like your girl, Elena might be young, but as crown princess of Avalor, she’s learning to be a collaborative, communicative, and confident leader. By following Elena’s adventures (and taking on a few of her own), your girl will uncover the leader within herself and feel empowered to help others do the same.

Featuring 12 simple but proven tips for enhancing your girl’s critical thinking, goal-setting, and problem-solving skills, the Elena of Avalor Leadership Guide is a must-read for any parent or caregiver looking to raise amazing girls.

So where can you get this awesome leadership guidance for the girl in your life? Right here, for free! That’s right—as part of Girl Scouts of the USA’s and Disney Channel’s commitment to helping all families practice leadership, we’re making the The Elena of Avalor Leadership Guide by Girl Scouts and Disney Channel available on our website, in both English and Spanish, at no cost to you.

So go check it out and explore what it means for your girl to lead like a Girl Scout today!

Top cookie sellers celebrate at CEO’s house

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Colorado’s top 17 Girl Scout Cookies sellers from 2016 were the guests of honor at a special dinner at the home of Girl Scouts of Colorado President and CEO Stephanie Foote on Saturday, July 23. The #cookiebosses arrived in style via a limo and spent the evening celebrating. These special girls came from as far away as Pueblo to attend this private dinner party. Congrats, girls!

Top 17 of 2016

Ciara, Lakewood — 7,118 packages

Paige, Thornton — 6,011 packages

Kaitlyn, Arvada — 4,618 packages

Joanna, Lochbuie — 3,585 packages

Emma, Castle Rock — 3,523 packages

Alycia, Lakewood — 3,514 packages

Paris, Bennett — 3,510 packages

Diana, Pueblo — 3,212 packages

Alexis, Littleton — 2,551 packages

Caroline, Loveland — 2,532 packages

Chanah, Fort Collins — 2,526 packages

Madison, Arvada— 2,525 packages

Isabelle, Fort Collins — 2,518 packages

Ada, Arvada — 2,516 packages

Brittany, Arvada— 2,500 packages

Erin, Fort Collins — 2,500 packages

Alexia, Colorado Springs — 2,500 packages

See all of the photos from the special evening on our Flickr page: https://www.flickr.com/photos/gscolorado/albums/72157668525471954

Celebrate 100 years of Girl Scouting in Colorado

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For nearly 100 years now Colorado Girl Scouts have been making friends, trying new things, and learning leadership skills to make the world a better place. Girl Scouts of Colorado is inviting girls and adults to join the fun for the 2016-17 membership year in celebration of the 100th anniversary of Girl Scouting in Colorado. Juliette Gordon Low started Girl Scouts in Savannah, Ga., in 1912. Girl Scouting came to Colorado in 1917 when the first troop formed outside of Colorado Springs. Today, Girl Scouts of Colorado is proud to serve nearly 25,000 girls across the state with the help and support of 10,000 adult volunteers!

When girls are given a protective and supportive environment to take chances, despite the potential for failure, they’re able to experience the emotional impact of risk without damaging consequences. When children take chances, all aspects of their lives are improved—they become more independent and confident, and become better students. Shouldn’t every girl have the chance to experience these benefits? Through taking chances and being part of a girl-led program, girls become more active and engaged learners, develop a positive sense of self, and learn resourceful problem solving.

Girl Scouts is open to all girls from kindergarten through grade 12. Anyone over the age of 18 can apply to be a Girl Scout volunteer. Girls cannot experience the positive impact of Girl Scouts without adult volunteers, and each adult who volunteer has the opportunity to make a real difference in the life of a girl. Girl Scout volunteers come from all walks of life. They are men, women, young professionals, retirees, college students, and more. Both girls and adult volunteers can join at any time of the year. To join Girl Scouts or learn more about volunteering, please visit: www.girlscouts.org/join.

Learn more about how you can be part of the Girl Scout Leadership Experience by visiting girlscoutsofcolorado.org, calling 1-877-404-5708, or emailing inquiry@gscolorado.org.

 

Centennial Kickoff Celebration: Celebrating 100 years of Girl Scouting in Colorado

Written by Katy L. Wood

My family moved a lot when I was a kid so I never managed to stay in a Girl Scout troop–and they never managed to keep up a troop on their own–but what I did do was go to camp. There were summers where I’d go to three separate two week camps, sometimes one right after the other so I was away from home for a month. Those days at camp are some of the best memories of my childhood. I am who I am because of those days at camp.

I frequently got the chance to hang upside-down from rather precarious positions:

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I learned how to shoot and gained a life long love of archery:

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I went backpacking in some of the most beautiful wilderness out there:

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I met a woman called Pink who was a HUGE influence on who I am today, dyed hair and crazy artist and all:

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And while I went to a handful of different camps there was one that stood out above all the rest: Flying “G” Ranch Colorado. It was this beautiful place nestled up in the Rockies full of horses and platform tents and storms that made the ground rock and so much more. Not even the Haymen Fire that destroyed most of the area around it could bring it down.

Pink ran the art shed for every year I can remember going there. She taught us how to make candles and weave beads and paint and make friendship bracelets. I was even lucky enough to have her as a unit counselor on an art themed backpacking trip.

My mom went to Flying “G” when she was a kid. I started going when I was nine years old. But when I was 12 the camp was shut down. It broke my heart. 

I remember my last session there; it was the session with the art themed backpacking trip with Pink. I remember the very last flag ceremony the camp ever had:

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I remember that there was a virus that was going around camp on the very last night so we had to cancel the big, final, closing campfire. But Pink, someone like me who was a second generation attendee of the camp, wouldn’t have that. She gathered all of our unit up into the outdoor kitchen in our unit, turned on her radio, pulled out her guitar, and started singing camp songs over the radio for the whole camp to hear.

We cried. Every single one of us. Every single girl in that unit was someone like me who’d been attending the camp for years and we were devastated. It was like losing our home. We were never going to come back and tell ghost stories about the Aspen Heart up on the mountain. We were never going to churn butter in the homestead house. We were never gonna have to pull our mattresses off of their metal frames because the lightning was so bad. We were never gonna sing in front of the lodge before meals. We were never gonna watch Pink dip her hand into a vat of boiling wax because she was determined to have a hand shaped candle. We were never gonna hike up to Lookout Rock before dawn and watch the sun come up over a valley full of clouds. It was over.

Sure, there are plenty of other great Girl Scout camps in Colorado. I’ve been to a handful of them, before and after Flying “G” closed. But it was never the same.

I’ve missed Girl Scouts like crazy ever since that camp closed, but I moved on. I had other things keeping me busy like high school and then college. I still hiked, I still practiced archery, I still told ghost stories. I still missed it, even if I’d moved on.

Then, about a month ago, Elba Barr contacted me wondering if I’d be interested in teaching comics at the Girl Scout Centennial Colorado celebration on the 23rd of July. She’d found me online when searching for women artists in Colorado. I wanted so much to say yes, but at the time I thought it would be out of the state that weekend for a family vacation. Then that vacation got canceled and I jumped at the chance to e-mail Elba back to say I would be available after all. I didn’t get my hopes up though, it had been about two weeks and I knew Elba might have found someone else to fill the position.

But she hadn’t, and she was ECSTATIC that I’d become available. So I sent her a list of supplies, packed up a collection of my favorite comic books and drawing resources–as well as my old Flying “G” bandanna–and headed down to Colorado Springs where the celebration was taking place.

I got there about two hours early because, for one, I’m terrible at planning, for two, I was ridiculously excited. I couldn’t WAIT to meet the girls and talk to them about comics. So I hauled out my box of books, set up under my little tent in the dusty field, and waited for things to get rolling at this delightful little get together that would be teaching the girls not only comics but other wonderful things like spear-throwing (something every girl should, obviously, know).

The celebration started off with a wonderful flag ceremony and some great speeches and, not gonna lie, I was quite proud of myself for remembering the Girl Scout pledge after about ten years. Then it was back to my tent to get things started. 

Technically the comic artist badge is a cadet level badge (around middle school age) but I had girls of all ages come to my tent, some as young as five or six. There were even girls from other countries. They were all so sweet and happy to draw and show me their comics and ask questions. Some of them even gave me little trinkets to take home, and one set of parents bought me a slushy to battle the heat of the day.

It was great. It was just straight up great. Yeah, I was getting to talk about and teach something I love doing, but more than that I was on the other side of it now. I was a counselor, even if it was just for a day. I was Pink, the woman who had such a huge, lasting influence on who I am today. It was a little surreal and it brought back so many amazing memories of being the little girl sitting in the dirt at camp with a homemade sketchbook and dreaming about being a successful artist one day. 

So thank you, Elba, for inviting me to this awesome event that gave me back something I’ve been missing for ten years; a little piece of Flying “G” ranch.

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Sundial dedication at Meadow Mountain Ranch

 

A special 55th Anniversary Reunion celebration was held during Meadow Mountain Ranch Women’s Week on July 27, 2016 At noon, a new sundial was officially dedicated. The sundial sits on top of the camp’s time capsule and is a generous gift from Alma Hix. Girl Scouts of all ages, along with alumnae, friends, and family, gathered for the ceremony, which was also attended by Girl Scouts of Colorado President and CEO Stephanie A. Foote. The sundial was designed by artist Ted Schaal of Lovelend, Colo. and a new time capsule was installed underneath it. The time capsule will be opened in 2032.

In May of 1960, the Mountain Prairie Girl Scout Council purchased the 200-acre property, which is now known as Meadow Mountain Ranch, from Jack Coffee. The first Girl Scout camp summer season opened on June 25, 1961. Since then, MMR has been enjoyed by thousands of Girl Scouts attending resident camp, troop camp, Women’s Week, “Me & My Guy” events, and many more.

Friends of Mountain Meadow Ranch and members of the Girl Scouts of Colorado History Committee have prepared an official History of Meadow Mountain Ranch. for more information, email probertscolo@gmail.com.

Dragon Boat Festival: Volunteers needed

Submitted by Christine Slomski, GSCO Recruitment Specialist

Girl Scouts of Colorado will be a featured exhibitor at the 16th celebration of the Dragon Boat Festival at Sloan’s Lake on Saturday, July 30 and Sunday, July 31, 2016. THANK YOU for your help! You’ll be a part of something BIG… the largest Asian/Asian-American celebration in Colorado drawing more than 125,000 people from all over the state!

The Girl Scout tent will be in Dragon Land, featuring Chinese-inspired masks and Zodiac-themed bookmarks for youth to create. Volunteers are needed to 1) run the activity table and 2) serve as ambassadors by talking about adult volunteering and helping adults fill out interest cards for their girls.

Adults and girls are welcome to volunteer. If this is your first year and want to know more details about activities, our staff will be there during the festival. It’s easy, fun, and one of Denver’s signature cultural events!

Contact Christine Slomski at christine.slomski@gscolorado.org for further information.

Sign up here: http://www.signupgenius.com/go/30e0d4aa5a82fa6fa7-dragon

Girl Scout attends camp thanks to Mary Jo Jacobs, M.D. Memorial Girl Scout Adventure Fund

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Kyla Wolffe, of Eagle County, recently returned home from Girl Scouts of Colorado summer camp after receiving the Mary Jo Jacobs, M.D. Memorial Girl Scout Adventure Fund. Kyla attended “Pirate Splash Camp” at Tomahawk Ranch near Bailey. When asked about her experience at camp, Kyla wrote, “I had sooooooo much fun and I will probably go back next year. All the counselors were so nice and I loved meeting new people. I especially loved fishing, when I caught a fish and I felt the tug, I was so excited! Another favorite part of the camp I had was learning how to make new things like bracelets, crafts, and tie-dying, and I started to teach my friends how to make some of the bracelets. Also I loved learning all the songs and a few I have memorized! Thank you so much.”

Katie Strickland, of Garfield County, also received the Mary Jo Jacobs, M.D. Memorial Girl Scout Adventure Fund. She attended “Zip Life” at Sky High Ranch outside of Colorado Springs.

Mary Jo’s four children established the scholarship in December 2014 to honor their mother’s extraordinary legacy. As an 8-year-old girl growing up in 1937, Mary Jo wanted a new pair of roller skates. She wanted them more than anything in world— until she learned her Brownie troop was going to be able to go to summer camp. Mary Jo had to make a choice: spend the $8 she had worked so hard to earn on roller skates or Girl Scout camp? For Mary Jo, the decision was simple. She was going to Girl Scout camp. Mary Jo’s mother walked her to the local Girl Scout office, so she could be the first to register. A reporter for the Artesia Daily Press in New Mexico even wrote a story about Mary Jo and her decision.

After returning home from camp, Mary Jo continued to participate in Girl Scout activities, including going to camp. Eventually, she became a doctor and worked tirelessly to serve the people of Eagle and Garfield Counties, Colorado.

The Mary Jo Jacobs, M.D. Memorial Girl Scout Adventure Fund provides Girl Scouts from Eagle and Garfield counties in Colorado with a scholarship so they can experience the learning opportunities, joy, and camaraderie of attending Girl Scout Camp. “Our hope is that that many girls will have the same positive experience, education and adventure that mom had through her involvement in Girl Scouting and her opportunity to attend Girl Scout camp,” said Dr. Patricia VanDevander, daughter of Dr. Mary Jo Jacobs.

Registration for Girl Scout Camp is now underway on the Girl Scouts of Colorado website at girlscoutsofcolorado.org. For summer 2016, girls can attend overnight camp sessions at Sky High Ranch near Manitou Lake and Woodland Park or perennial favorite Tomahawk Ranch near Bailey, southwest of Denver. Activities include archery, backpacking, photography, and rock climbing. Overnight camp runs from 3 to 12 days for girls ages 6 and up.  Girl Scouts of Colorado will continue to offer day camping adventures throughout the state. The summer camp schedule is live on the Girl Scouts of Colorado website (girlscoutsofcolorado.org). Girl Scout summer camp programs are open to all girls throughout Colorado, whether they’re in a troop or not, and new campers get a 10-percent discount.

Girl Scouts has been helping girls shine for more than 100 years. Girl Scouts of Colorado is proud to serve more than 20,000 girls across the state with the help and support of 10,000 adult volunteers! Learn more how you can be part of the Girl Scout Leadership Experience by visiting girlscoutsofcolorado.org, calling 1-877-404-5708, or emailing inquiry@gscolorado.org.

 

 

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

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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