Girl Scouts begin iconic cookie program

Girl Scout cookies/photo submitted

Girl Scout cookies/photo submitted

KNOXVILLE (press release)—It’s Girl Scout cookie time. Thin Mints, Samoas and all your favorite flavors are back for the Girl Scout Council of the Southern Appalachians’ 2016 season.

Girls will take orders in person and through online invitations January 15 – February 1. Public booth sales are February 26 – March 20. Customers will be able to find a booth in their neighborhood at girlscoutcookies.org. The price remains $4 per box, and every purchase is an investment in a girl’s future.

“When you buy Girl Scout Cookies, you’re not just feeding your sweet tooth or enjoying one of America’s favorite comfort foods. Every purchase teaches girls critical skills for life—like business ethics, people skills and goal setting,” says Heather Hatmaker, director of revenue at the Girl Scouts. Hatmaker oversees the council’s entire cookie operation.

In 2015, the council’s Girl Scouts sold an average of 221 boxes, raising almost $900 each.

“It’s so exciting. You have to set goals, work hard and believe in yourself,” says Tigerlily Collier, last year’s top seller.

The 10-year-old sold 2,600 boxes and was responsible for more than $10,000. This mini-tycoon was on a mission to raise money for a troop horseback riding trip and service project to help the homeless.

Tigerlily’s favorite reward was helping people. Although, the horseback riding was great.

“Truthfully, I would say it was helping the homeless people,” she said. “When we brought them blankets and food their smiles warmed us up inside.”

Customers can join the Girl Scout spirit of service by purchasing cookies to send directly to members of the U.S. military through an initiative called Operation: APPRECIATION. Last year, customers donated over 16,000 boxes in appreciation of our armed forces’ service and sacrifice.

“It’s a great way to support two good causes at once,” said Hatmaker. “The Girl Scout receives credit for the purchase, but the actual cookies are enjoyed by our service men and women and their families as a sweet treat and token of thanks.”

The Digital Cookie online marketing platform is back for a second year. In true Girl Scout spirit, all sales are still initiated by a girl. Upgrades to Digital Cookie include enhanced learning opportunities for girls and improved customer convenience.

Here’s this year’s cookie lineup:

–Thin Mints: chocolate wafers covered in even more chocolate with natural peppermint oil

–Samoas: chewy cookies packed with caramel, coconut, and chocolate

–Tagalongs: crispy cookies layered with peanut butter and covered with chocolate

–Do-si-dos: crunchy oatmeal sandwich cookies with creamy peanut butter filling

–Trefoils: traditional shortbread cookies

–Rah-Rah Raisins: hearty oatmeal cookies with plump raisins and Greek yogurt-flavored chunks

–Savannah Smiles: crispy, zesty lemon wedge cookies dusted with powdered sugar.

The gluten free Toffee-tastic cookie piloted last year is back in limited quantities. Toffee-tastic can only be ordered via Digital Cookie and will not be available at all cookie booths.

“I’m just excited that the sale is finally about to begin,” Tigerlily said. This year’s goal? 3,000 boxes.

One-hundred percent of proceeds stay within the council’s service area, and approximately $1 million goes directly into troop treasuries. Girl Scouting is girl-led, so girls decide how to spend their money—from trips to learning experiences to community service projects. Council proceeds provide essential services to girls and volunteers.

About the Girl Scout Council of the Southern Appalachians:

The Girl Scout Mission is to build girls of courage, confidence and character, who make the world a better place. The council has approximately 9,000 girl members and 2,000 adult volunteers in the Knoxville, Chattanooga, and Tri-Cities metros. Membership is always open to girls and volunteers. Please visit GirlScoutCSA.org for more information and online registration.

 

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