The Register-Herald, Beckley, West Virginia

Local News

January 6, 2012

Annual Girl Scout cookie sale begins today

The holidays are over, but the most wonderful time of the year starts today.

Forget chestnuts roasting on an open fire, visions of Thin Mints, Samoas and Tagalongs are dancing through our heads.

The Girl Scouts of Black Diamond Council begin taking pre-orders for their annual cookie sales event today. 

Pre-orders will be taken through Feb. 3 and booth sales will be held from March until May.

Stacie Bolen, membership development coordinator for Raleigh, McDowell and Wyoming counties, says the girls are expecting high sales this year.

“It’s the 100th year of Girl Scouts, so a lot of girls have joined,” Bolen said. “We’re at a record high, even for Raleigh County. We are looking very much forward to all that is going to be sold this year.”

Emily Martin, 10, has been a member of the Girl Scouts for four years.

“I like selling cookies and seeing the look on the customers’ faces when they get them.”

She says she is very excited about cookie sales this year, and has set a personal goal of selling 400 boxes. Last year, she sold just over 1,000 boxes.

Her sister, Taylor, is also a Girl Scout. She is 5 years old and says she also enjoys selling cookies. 

Samoas and Thin Mints are the most popular cookies in our area, but a new cookie is joining the selection this year.

In celebration of their 100th year, Savannah Smiles, a bite-sized, lemon wedge cookie, has been created. The cookie’s name reflects the Savannah, Ga., home of Girl Scout Founder Juliette Gordon Low.

All varieties of cookies are $3.50 per box, including new Savannah Smiles, Thin Mints, Trefoils, Do-Si-Dos, Samoas, Tagalongs, Dulce de Leche, and Thank U Berry Munch. Bolen says many Girl Scout troops had to raise prices to $4 per box this year, but she happily reports their rates remain the same.

Customers who pre-order cookies should receive them the first week of March. But even if customers don’t pre-order, booths will be set up all around Beckley, including Crossroads Mall, Walmart, Sam’s and CVS.

Bolen said sales were very good last year; their initial order was around 78,000 boxes.

Since its inception in 1917, the cooking selling program has taught girls how to set goals, manage money and develop their own personal leadership styles.

“It’s like they’re running their own business,” Bolen said.

The entire troop sets a goal and creates an action plan. The funds generated from cookie sales will then be used to fund a service project, as well as an end of the year trip.

Since this is the 100th year anniversary, a special celebration called “Paint the Town Green” will be held in Charleston May 4-6. An estimated 8,000 Girl Scouts will be coming to share in the celebration.

Bolen said “Paint the Town Green” is going to be huge and many troops may opt to spend their fund-raising money during this event.

However, she says some troops will take traditional trips to Dollywood, Splash Country, or even DisneyWorld.

Special incentives are offered for exceptional sales and girls who sell over 1,000 boxes are recognized at an annual banquet.

Last year, Bolen’s area had several girls who reached this goal. She even had a few who sold 4,000 boxes.

The Black Diamond Council covers all counties in West Virginia, as well as some counties in Ohio, Virginia and Maryland.

Over 20,000 girls are served in a total of 61 counties spanning these four states. Over 500 GIrls Scouts are in Raleigh County alone.  

To pre-order cookies, call 304-252-9836 or the Cookie Hotline at 1-800-756-7616. Cookies can also be ordered at the local office at 820 Johnstown Road in Beckley.

— E-mail: wholdren@register-herald.com

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