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Girl Scout cookies on sale in area now

It’s that time of the year again.

The Girl Scouts’ annual cookie sale began Jan. 5 and willcontinue until March 17, with boxes of Girl Scout cookies showingup in southwest Mississippi as early as Feb. 14.

“We hope we’re going to have a stellar cookie sale. We’re havingsome good weather, so that will be good for the girls going outselling,” said Julia Wilkinson of the Girl Scout Council of MiddleMississippi.

The traditional favorites, which include Caramel deLites, ThinMints, Peanut Butter Sandwiches, Animal Treasures, Shortbreads,Peanut Butter Patties and Low Fat Lemon Pastry Cremes, can bepurchased for just $3 a box from any Girl Scout.

“Of all the cookies that are sold nationwide every year, we havethree cookies in the top 10, and we’re only on the shelves for amonth a year,” Wilkinson said.

Girl Scouts will soon begin visiting churches, schools andbusinesses with their order forms, which this year contain a newcookie called Friendship Circle.

Inspired by the traditional friendship circle formed when girlsstand with their arms crossed, clasping the hand of the girl oneach side of her, the Friendship Circle cookie holds some of themagic of friends from all around the world.

Friendship Circles are two crunchy vanilla cookies filled with arich cocoa cream. The word “friend” is embossed on each cookie indifferent languages. The new cookie celebrates the 90th birthday ofGirl Scouts.

The next few weeks will provide great educational opportunitiesfor Girl Scouts of all ages while they attempt to raise money fortheir activities fund.

“The girls learn how to run a program and how to set goals.They’re learning basic sales techniques as well as people skills,”Wilkinson said, mentioning that budgeting and math skills learnedduring the sale will help the girls throughout their lives.

Many of today’s businesswomen cite selling Girl Scout cookies astheir first step toward successful careers, said Ann Bittick,executive director of the Girl Scout Council of MiddleMississippi.

Girl Scouts also have some decision making about how they wantto spend the money after the sale. Troops generally use theproceeds to fund field trips and educational activities throughoutthe year.

Scouting helps cultivate values, social conscience andself-esteem in young girls, while also teaching them critical lifeskills.

More than 3.5 millions girls and adults are members of theworldwide organization, and over 10,000 girls participate inprograms offered by the Girl Scout Council of MiddleMississippi.

For more information about Girl Scouts or ordering Girl Scoutcookies, call Wilkinson at 835-0189.