MINT HILL, NC – Girl Scout Cookies first appeared on the scene in 1917, when the Mistletoe Troop from Muskogee, OK, sold homemade cookies in their high school cafeteria. Since their inception, Girl Scout Cookie sales have only been interrupted once, during World War II, when sugar, butter and flour shortages forced Girl Scouts to pursue alternative means of fundraising (in 1944, they sold the first Girl Scout Calendars).
COVID-19 restrictions made in-person sales tricky this year, but local Girl Scouts were determined to continue the tradition. “Many were excited to get out and sell after such a difficult year, and they spent a lot of time thinking about what cookie sales could look like,” said Ellee W., assistant cookie manager for Troop 548.
In a normal year, Girl Scouts start setting up cookie sale booths on January 26, right after they pick up their cookies. “Our council postponed booths until February 12 this year,” says Ellee. “We are hopeful that we’ll be selling like usual soon, but all the girls understand things may change and have been great at being flexible.”
Junior Troop 548 and Cadette Troop 192 kicked off booth sales in downtown Mint Hill on Friday, February 12, selling cookies at the corner of Lawyers Road and Highway 51 from 4:00 pm – 6:00 pm. The unseasonably cold weather couldn’t stop this determined group of Girl Scouts, who kicked off their sales in the freezing rain. They’ll be in the same space Saturday and Sunday from 11:00 am to 5:00 pm if the weather allows, and they’re scheduled to be back the following weekend with more dates possible in the coming weeks.
The Girl Scouts are selling all the same flavors you’ve come to know and love for the same low price of $4.00 – $5.00 per box. “I like the toffee-tastic because toffee is my favorite candy!” says Sami W. of Troop 548. “Everyone should buy cookies because they are delicious, and they fund things that girls get to do.”
In accordance with COVID-19 safety guidelines provided by the national and local Hornets Nest Girl Scouts Council, Mint Hill’s booth will be drive-up. The Girl Scouts will be wearing masks and filling orders all while customers stay in their cars to maintain an appropriate distance. They will be sanitizing and asking customers to wear masks as well.
100 percent of the net revenue earned through Girl Scout cookie sales stays with the local council and troops to fund essential programming, reach underserved areas, maintain camps and properties, and fund community projects. Troop 548 is planning a trip to Savannah (once COVID allows), the birthplace and home of Girl Scouts Founder Juliette Gordon-Low. The girls will get to learn Girl Scout history and assist in service projects in the area while visiting.
If you miss out on Mint Hill’s cookie booth, it’s easy to get your Girl Scout cookie fix online. Cookie sales have always been girl-led, but this year, you can purchase online without a specific salesgirl. Just enter your zip code at girlscouts.org, and your purchase will be credited to your local troops.
If you’re one of many who made a New Year’s resolution to eat healthier, you’ll be happy to hear that supporting the Girl Scouts and shedding pounds aren’t mutually exclusive! “Whether in person or online, everyone has the option to donate boxes of cookies,” says Wallace. “Locally, I believe the cookies will go to military service members, first responders as well as food banks.”