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Local Girl Scouts go on amazing adventure

June 23, 2012
Kylie Saari - Staff Writer , Fairmont Sentinel

FAIRMONT - Amazing, beautiful, adventurous, informational and inspiring were some of the words local cadette Girl Scouts use to describe a recent trip.

Girls from troops 30213, 30128 and 30259 recently returned from a 12-day, 3,000-mile trip to Savannah, Ga.

More than 110 girls from southwestern and south-central Minnesota - including 10 girls and 8 moms from Fairmont and Ceylon - filled three coach buses.

Article Photos

Girl Scouts visit the Georgia Aquarium in Atlanta.

On route, the group stopped in Champaign, Ill; Lexington, Ky; Pigeon Forge, Tenn; and Mt. Pleasant, S.C., among other places.

Many of the stops are special places in Girl Scout history; others were of historical interest to the girls.

At the Herbert Hoover Library in West Branch, Iowa, the troops viewed an exhibit about First Lady Lou Henry Hoover, who served two terms as president of the Girl Scouts.

They spent a night with the fishes at a large aquarium, visited the Louisville Slugger Museum, and a racetrack in Lexington, Ky.

At the Air Force museum in Savannah, the troops found out that during World War II, Girl Scouts made a game of stealing Nazi flags, sometimes right out from under the noses of the Nazis.

"It was a once-in-a-lifetime experience," said Scout Mikayla Soelter.

The pinnacle of the trip was a visit to the Juliette Low house, birthplace of the founder of Girl Scouts, in Savannah, Ga.

This was a particularly poignant year for the trip, as 2012 is the 100th anniversary of Girl Scouts.

The local troops met others from around the country at the Low house, and made use of a Girl Scout tradition called SWAPS: Special Whatchamacallits Affectionately Pinned Somewhere. They are small crafty items attached to pins that Scouts affix to each other when they meet someone new.

"We made a lot of them," Emma Koehler said.

Elizabeth Ward, leader of the troop in Ceylon, had been planning to take this trip since her troop members were Daisies, the youngest Girl Scout level.

The girls officially signed up for the trip two years ago, when a group in New Ulm invited them to come along.

They earned money selling Girl Scout cookies, wreaths and calendars, working at fish fries, shrimp fries and spaghetti dinners.

Barb Sandersfeld, leader of one of the Fairmont troops, said the girls can use some of the information they learned on the trip to earn badges and projects in the future.

"It was a wealth of information for them," she said.

Now that they are done with the trip, the Scouts will work on their Silver Awards, the second-highest award given in Girl Scouts.



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