It is that time of year for the annual Girl Scout cookie drive throughout central Oklahoma. Girl Scout cookies are a part of American culture having been around for approximately 100 years. With the support of their families these girls rely on a successful sale to help promote not only their troop but also being able to reward the girls with things like a trip to camp. For Troop #137 in Guthrie under the leadership of Rebecca Raines, this first year troop of six girls has set a goal of selling 1,500 cases of cookies this year. The troop is also looking to support the troops overseas by participating in Operation Cookie Drop.
Operation Cookie Drop allows customers to either donate towards a box of cookies or buy a box ($3.50) and designate it to go to the troops overseas in Afghanistan. The cookies are all gathered together in April and Tinker Air Force Base shows up at the Girl Scouts of Western Oklahoma office to pick up the cookies. In 2013, there were 1,300 cases or 15,600 boxes of cookies shipped to all forms of the military in Afghanistan.
Meanwhile do not be surprised if between now and Feb. 21 the Guthrie neighborhoods are filled with Girl Scouts and brownie Scouts canvassing your neighborhood with the various styles of cookies. Raines said, “It is tough being a first year troop. We have six kids with three of them in kindergarten and first grade range called Daisies and three second graders that are Brownie Scouts. We hope to make enough in our sales to take the girls to Arrowhead State Park for some camping, canoeing, horseback riding, hiking and cave exploring.”
The cookie sale will run officially until Mar. 23. From Feb. 21 until Mar. 23 you will find the scouts camped out at all the local high traffic locations like Love’s, Walmart, Homeland, Ace Hardware, the Gazebo at Harrison and Division and even Petty’s Pit Stop out on Douglas.
So from the early years when Girl Scout Cookies where made in mom’s oven to the Mistletoe Troop in Muskogee, Oklahoma selling baked cookies in its high school cafeteria as a service project, the cookie sales continue to grow as do the girls involved in selling them.
History shows that the cookies went from being made locally in the early years by each council at a cost of approximately 30-cents for six dozen cookies to post World War II when the national Girl Scout organization decided to license local bakers to produce and package cookies. By 1948, a total of 29 bakers were licensed to bake Girl Scout Cookies. That number has now been reduced down to just a few bakeries that do all the cookies which in the Western Oklahoma District this year is expected to be approximately 60,000 cases of cookies this year.