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At the polls in Halethorpe, Girl Scout cookies are the favorites

Anthony Ravello, of Arbutus, buys cookies from Halethorpe area Girl Scouts outside the Halethorpe Elementary School polling center during the 2016 General Election.
Anthony Ravello, of Arbutus, buys cookies from Halethorpe area Girl Scouts outside the Halethorpe Elementary School polling center during the 2016 General Election. (Jon Bleiweis / Baltimore Sun Media Group)

Voters at Halethorpe Elementary School had an additional and unexpected choice at the polls on Tuesday: Caramel deLites, Thin Mints, or any of the other eight varieties of Girl Scout cookies that three troops were selling.

It was the first time the Halethorpe-based troops — 1817, 3212 and 4038 — decided to sell the seasonal cookies outside a voting station, according to cluster coordinator Andrea Lawrence.

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Eight girls wearing their vests and sashes set up shop — with parental supervision — to sell the $4 boxes of cookies.

The scouts typically sell their cookies at the Arbutus 7-Eleven convenience store, but troop leaders thought they could get some additional foot traffic and sales by coming to the polls. By taking part in the sales, the scouts can earn a cookie booth badge.

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During four and a half hours, about 350 people voted at the Center for Maryland Agriculture/Farm Park in Cockeysville on Election Day.

"We have a lot of little cute ones and they sell cookies really well," she said.

They arrived at the school at 11 a.m., planning to stay for four hours and hoping to sell 150 boxes of cookies. An hour in, they sold 45 boxes.

Anthony Ravello, of Arbutus, a 60-year-old contract compliance inspector for Montgomery County, bought his wife's favorite cookies, Thin Mints, and Girl Scout S'mores after he voted.

"I really think it's a good seeing the younger ones at an event here like this," he said. "It offers hope for the future of society."

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Chief Republican Judge Zach Nelson said he has never seen Girl Scouts sell cookies outside polls.

"I think that they are geniuses," he said. "There's nothing that says they can't do it and they're going to get a couple thousand people come by their table today. Why not do it?"

Shannon Nickey, a 41-year-old bartender and student from Arbutus, came to the polls with her 11-year-old son, Parker.

After voting, she walked away with boxes of Thin Mints and Peanut Butter Patties that she purchased.

"It's brilliant," Nickey said. "It's the smartest thing I've ever seen."



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