Tag Archives: #gsoutdoors

Trail Adventure meet-ups with The North Face help Girl Scouts earn new badge

More than 500 Girl Scouts, along with their families and friends, participated in  GSCO-sponsored Trail Adventure meet-ups in September 2019! We knew Girl Scouts loved the outdoors, but you really showed us your passion! GSCO is proud to have partnered with The North Face to offer Girl Scouts statewide this opportunity as they work complete a Trail Adventure badge and receive a FREE* badge.

With a shared purpose of encouraging exploration, Girl Scouts and The North Face understand the importance of providing the next generation of girls, regardless of socioeconomic status, with outdoor adventure experiences. By giving girls the opportunity to experience the outdoors, Girl Scouts and The North Face hope to enhance leadership skills and confidence in young girls, while encouraging them to seek new challenges through outdoor adventure.

If you attended any of the September meet-ups, don’t forget to complete your badge requirements by January 1, 2020 to receive your FREE* badge. Just have a parent/guardian or troop leader fill out this online notification formThis form will close on January 7, 2020 and badges will be mailed in January to the address provided. Badges are earned by Girl Scouts and must be completed according to the appropriate program level. Check out the online Badge Explorer for specific badge requirements for each program level.

Please complete one online form for each Girl Scout or group of Girl Scouts completing the badge on the same day. For example, one form for girls who complete their badge on November 10, 2019 and one form for girls who complete their badge on December 7, 2019.

* This opportunity is made possible by a generous grant from The North Face. Only registered Girl Scouts ages 5-18 may receive a free badge upon participation in a GSCO-sponsored Trail Adventure meet-up in September 2019 and completion all of program level-appropriate badge-earning requirements by January 7, 2020.  Troops may complete badgework together or Girl Scouts may earn individually.

Gold Award Girl Scout: Christine Bolt, Steamboat Springs, “Camp Bloom”

What did you do for your Gold Award Project?

The issue my project addressed was the lack of summer camp opportunities in our area for children with Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD) and other varying disabilities. Ultimately, I organized and arranged for a weeklong summer camp for children with autism. Each day was centered around an aspect of camping and outdoor skills, such as: building a fire, setting up a tent, and wildlife awareness. At the end of the week, the kids were to use the knowledge my team and I had taught them to camp away from home for one night.

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

I measured my impact by how happy or excited my campers looked each day. Camp Bloom was for the children more than everything. The name of Camp Bloom was inspired by the different stages of flower growth, with the notion that no matter where one is at, they may continue to grow and learn and experience new things. Now regardless if they retained anything from my camp, the most important aspect is the most powerful one of them all; it’s if they have fun. If they laugh, giggle, or however they express happiness appears, then I feel as though I was successful.

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

A local company in our town of Steamboat Springs has agreed to a permanent sponsorship for the next five years. However, if I am unable to continue to assume leadership and be “camp director,” I planned Camp Bloom with the Yampa Valley Autism Program (YVAP), which is an already substantiated organization in the community. By doing so, YVAP can proceed with my program, with the curriculum already created, in the future without me. While not as pertinent, I would like to “train” another Girl Scout in the hopes of her taking over my position and leadership of Camp Bloom. I really like the idea of the two intertwined organizations: YVAP and Girl Scouts.

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

Dealing with an autism diagnosis is already unsettling enough. Costs for specially devised programs and support are very expensive to begin with. While the state of Colorado has extremely low funding for family aid and autism research, I wanted to create a free camp to grow these kids’ knowledge and educate them on a topic that I very much appreciate and enjoy doing.

What did you learn about yourself?

I learned that do not, and should not, always need to seek approval in things that I do. I must be confident in my choices and if things go awry, I still need to stay positive and be proud of myself and what I ultimately accomplished. I also learned that it is important to take command and not be afraid to say what I want or prefer. And that prior to Camp Bloom, I was more timid to organizing things than I am now.

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

Forevermore, I will be able to say that I accomplished something that I am genuinely proud of. This achievement of mine can now be entered into resumes and applications for various things. I now have an idea of how to plan events and just how much work goes into doing such, and this knowledge I will be able to use in the future if need be.

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

This project taught me to open my eyes and look at the world around me. To affirm my role in the community and show me how I may influence those around me; and influence my sister Girl Scouts as well.

How did earning your Gold Award help you become a G.I.R.L. (go-getter, innovator, risk-taker, leader)?

Of course, I learned to take charge and lead my camp. However, I will say that I definitely had to be a risk-taker for Camp Bloom. This required me to do things I had never done or tried before. I ultimately learned new things and did things through “trial and error.” I had some worries, but by taking chances, it certainly paid off.

**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

Last kayak/paddleboard workshop of the season

Submitted by Sharon Manning

Northern & Northeastern CO

Longmont

Troop 73392 hosted their last kayak/paddleboard workshop of the season. Although the air and water temperature were on the cool side, the girls from Troop 60350 had a beautiful morning to enjoy blue skies and a gorgeous view of Longs Peak while playing on the water.

Troop 60350 had the opportunity to challenge their water craft skills with a variety of different kayaks and paddleboard while enjoying the scenery and wildlife at McIntosh Lake in Longmont.

This story was submitted using the Share Your Stories form. You can share your Girl Scout moments, too.

The Beauty of the seasons at Meadow Mountain Ranch

Submitted by Barbara Light

Metro Denver

Aurora

It’s a new season. A perfect opportunity to do something new, something bold, something beautiful. Over the past year, in the striking backdrop of the Rocky Mountains, Cadette Troop 71 has been trekking up to Meadow Mountain Ranch and hiking the Nature Trail on the property. We completed all four seasons this past weekend and earned the connecting patch.

We stayed on the property and used the time to bond together and learn different outdoor skills. We learned a lot going through the guidebooks and gathered more information when we found ourselves curious about our learnings. We saw the beauty and struggles that each season presented on the same path. We grew closer as a team and in our own abilities. We laughed so hard we cried and helped each other when things got tricky. We have had experiences that will stay with us forever. We highly recommend if you have the chance to go, that you take it; because our biggest learning is that, just like the seasons, with change, comes growth.

This story was submitted using the Share Your Stories form. You can share your Girl Scout moments, too.

Girl Scout Gold Award candidate builds StoryWalk Trail

Over the past year, Girl Scout Gold Award candidate Avery H. has developed, planned, and constructed a StoryWalk Trail for the Town of Parker. It is permanently installed at McCabe Meadows, a nature trail located just off the Cherry Creek Trail. A StoryWalk Trail is a type of nature trail with signs installed along it, displaying the pages of a children’s book. A story can be read as the trail is walked.

“I pursued this project because it perfectly intertwined my love for both the outdoors and reading while also engaging children in my community. I wanted to be able to help other kids discover the love I have for books and nature,” Avery wrote.

Special thanks to Reporter Jeff Todd of CBS4/KCNC-TV in Denver for sharing  Avery’s story!

 

Gold Award Girl Scout: Samantha Kucera, Steamboat Springs, “Discovering The Wilderness By Kids For Kids”

What did you do for your Gold Award project?

I created a wilderness skills program for kids. Through this program, I have run numerous educational events for more than 230 kids, created an online skills guide, and have a booklet available as a Wilderness Junior Ranger Program at Steamboat Lake State Park and as a patch program with Girl Scouts of Colorado. I created this program because I attended a charter school that taught wilderness skills and my family enjoys camping, backpacking, and hiking.  After learning that I knew unique skills that most of my friends had never learned, I wanted to share them with the kids in my community. My passion for sharing outdoor skills and getting kids into nature gave me a clear focus for my Gold Award.

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

I was able to see the difference in participants every time I taught them new wilderness skills. I am looking forward to seeing my patch on the back of girls’ uniforms.  I also see incredible changes in my Girl Scout friends who have helped me by teaching skills. Their newfound confidence is inspiring to me.

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

This project will be sustained without my involvement through my website, through availability at Steamboat Lake State Park, and through a patch program with Girl Scouts of Colorado. My website will be online until I choose to take it down, which I hope to keep updated instead. The website has all the information I would want to teach any kid, no matter the age. Currently, I have a booklet that guides kids through multiple activities, all teaching them aspects of wilderness skills. This program is active at Steamboat Lake State Park and will be used there for at least a year, but most likely for the foreseeable future. I have another version of this booklet as part of a Girl Scouts of Colorado patch program.  The initial order was for 500 patches, so they intend to advertise my program and keep it active for years to come.

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

My project includes a website, booklet, and a Girl Scout patch. When you look online, there are very few websites teaching wilderness skills for kids. Many are written for older audiences that the younger generations are unable to understand. By creating a website, I am giving kids the tools to learn outdoor skills from anywhere. Girl Scouts of Colorado intends to make my patch available to other councils nationwide. I already have interest in the patch in Illinois, Washington, Arizona, and Wyoming.

What did you learn about yourself?

For my entire life, I have heard about people who do amazing things such as making a business, writing a book, or creating an event. Without the Gold Award, I would have never attempted this large of a project. I conceptualized, planned, and implemented a program at the elementary school for 100 fourth graders, with middle and high schoolers as my team leaders. I wrote a booklet with the outdoor skills I believe are the most important for kids to know. I created my own website for a topic I deeply care about. This multifaceted program was my vision and goal. I shared the skills learned from my family, school, and years of Girl Scouts. Through this project, I learned that I am stronger than I imagined and that making a positive impact on the world is not as hard as I thought.

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

This project has made me an activist and a leader. My leadership skills will continue to grow because I learned how to turn my vision into reality. In the future, I will be able to let the leader in me show through in everything I do. I cannot wait until I get to see Girl Scouts with my patch on the back of their uniforms, seeing how my Gold Award has affected not only my life, but those around me.

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

The Gold Award is something very few girls earn. I am proud I can join their ranks. This is the highest award a Girl Scout can earn and is an award most girls never earn. For my final year before I become a Girl Scout troop leader, I made it my goal to earn this prestigious award.

How did earning your Gold Award help you become a G.I.R.L. (go-getter, innovator, risk-taker, leader)? 

My Gold Award taught me how to strive for what I never thought I could accomplish. I learned how to go for my dreams and make them a reality. Even when problems arose, I used my innovation to develop my ideas and solve any problems I faced. I have put my program and myself out for the world to see. I took the risk of letting the world see what I am passionate about. Every adult I worked with believed that I am a strong and confident young woman. Leading is what I have been developing my entire life. My Gold Award is my outlet to lead and share my knowledge with kids everywhere. Girl Scouts provided a place for me to learn about myself and become a better G.I.R.L.

**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

Cadette earns “Climbing Adventure” badge

Submitted by Camryn P.

Metro Denver

Highlands Ranch

Hello, my name is Camryn and recently I earned the new Cadette Climbing Adventure badge! For the first part of it, I had to interview an expert rock climber. My dad is on the Search and Rescue team, so he knew someone who would be good for the job. Rebecca has a rock wall inside her house! She talked about different kinds of rock climbing and different ways to rock climb. She also talked about how to belay, tie knots, and how she got into rock climbing. Rebecca showed me all the equipment you need and we talked about safety.

On Sunday, September 22, 2019, we went to Devils Head to try out some real rock climbing! It was about an hour drive there and a fun hike up to the rock wall called “Training Grounds.” The two routes I climbed were called Beginners Luck (rated 5.6) and Practice Run (rated 5.8). It was a lot of fun! Rock climbing was hard in some places and easy in others. It was very different than indoor rock climbing because you need a lot more grip strength as there are no pockets to hold on to like on a rock wall. I even got to belay Rebecca, so that meant her life was in my hands! I had a lot of fun doing this badge and I can’t wait to do more fun outdoor badges.

This story was submitted using the Share Your Stories form. You can share your Girl Scout moments, too.

Volunteering trail work at Magic Sky Ranch

Submitted by Ariella Wells

Northern & Northeastern CO

Fort Collins

A couple of the girls from Troop 70720, along with one of their grandparents, spent the day working on the Homestead Trail at Magic Sky Ranch. The troop will be back with more girls later this fall. This group got a nice start though. The troop really loves Magic Sky and cares about trying to do some upkeep on one of the trails they have loved using for the last nine years.

This story was submitted using the Share Your Stories form. You can share your Girl Scout moments, too.

Yurt camping

Submitted by Ariella Wells

Northern & Northeastern CO

Fort Collins

Troop 70720 went yurt camping. It was everyone’s first experience in a yurt and we had the most amazing time! The leaves were turning a brilliant yellow around us and the yurts were hidden amongst some trees. The girls hung out, played games, hiked, made s’mores, told stories around the fire of Girl Scout memories, and just bonded. We all had such a fantastic time and hope to go back in the future.

This story was submitted using the Share Your Stories form. You can share your Girl Scout moments, too.

Juniors from Troop 76048 camp, hike, and ride horses

Submitted by Susan Scott

Northern & Northeastern CO

Loveland/Fort Collins

Juniors from Troop 76048 in Loveland/Fort Collins used their cookie earnings for a campout at Magic Sky Ranch and horseback riding at Sundance Trail Ranch. They hiked, had s’mores, played wolf pack on the rocks, and had the entire Magic Sky Ranch to themselves!

This story was submitted using the Share Your Stories form. You can share your Girl Scout moments, too.