Girl scouts in Carroll County are kicking off a new year with a celebration in honor of Girl Scouts of the USA's 100th birthday and Girl Scouts of Central Maryland's 50th birthday.
The first Girl Scout troop was organized by Juliette Low in Savannah, Ga. on March 12, 1912, according to the official Girl Scouts website. Since then Girl Scouts have spread across the country, and the organization was chartered by the United States Congress in March of 1950.
Girl Scouts of Central Maryland was founded in 1962, exactly 50 years after the organization began, said Tony Roman, a Carroll County Service Unit Manager volunteer for the Girl Scouts of Central Maryland Council.
According to their website, Girl Scouts of Central Maryland now serves more than 30,000 girls in 2,053 troops throughout Baltimore City, and Baltimore, Anne Arundel, Harford, Howard and Carroll counties.
Roman, who is organizing the Carroll County celebration, said his oldest daughter was a Girl Scout all the way until she went to college, and his younger daughter, who is now in middle school, is currently in a Westminster-area troop.
He said he hopes the event reaches new girls in Carroll County who are interested in Girl Scouts and want to know more about what the organization is all about.
"It's an opportunity for all girls to enjoy activities that many Girl Scouts participate in and to learn more about this great organization," he said. "Our hope is that some girls will decide to join."
The celebration will take place at TownMall in Westminster 10 a.m.-2 p.m., Sept. 22, and is open to all Girl Scouts in the area and the public, too.
Roman said the celebration will include a rock climbing wall, story-sharing, sing-alongs, crafts, STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics) activities, and more.
A Juliette Low impersonator will be on-site so girls will have an opportunity to learn more about the woman who started it all, he said.
There will be a birthday cake to celebrate the Girl Scouts of the USA's 100th birthday and Girl Scouts of Central Maryland's 50th birthday, and the annual Girl Scouts cookie sale begins on Sept. 14, which means there will be Girl Scout cookies at the event available for purchase.
Erin Sanders, a Girl Scout who earned membership in the Council's 1,000+ club by selling 1,004 boxes of cookies will also be there to share her cookie selling secrets, according to Danita Terry, director of communications for Girl Scouts of Central Maryland.
"It's going to be a fun day for everyone," Roman said.
He said he believes Girl Scouts have had a tremendously positive effect on both of his daughters, and he wants use this event as a catalyst to share that with other young girls.
He said girls in kindergarten to 12th grade can sign up to become a girl scout, and now is the perfect time to do so.
Roman will be at the 100th and 50th birthday celebration to talk to interested girls and their parents about the benefits of being involved in Girl Scouts, and to assist them in joining local troops, or even starting a troop of their own, he said.
"[Girl Scouts] is the one place where girls can be themselves and feel that they are important," he said. "It gives them the opportunity to be able to develop their own identity, and be able to experience that in an open environment."