By TRAVIS MORSE firstname.lastname@example.org
---- — MT. VERNON — To local Girl Scout Samantha Bean, Friday evening’s Cookie Rally Dance at the Bethel Grade School Gym served a very important purpose.
Not only was it a fun evening of music and dancing for Jefferson County Scouts, but it also helped motivate the girls to sell as many cookies as they can for this year’s campaign.
“I’m hoping that this gets the girls really pumped for selling cookies and they sell a ton of cookies,” said Bean, 15, a senior level Scout.
The Girl Scout Cookie Rally Dance is held annually to kick off the Jefferson County cookie sale, which begins the day after the event.
This year’s cookie-selling campaign runs from Jan. 11 to Jan. 25. However, there will also be booth sales on the weekends of Feb. 28 to March 2, March 7 to March 9, and March 14 to March 16.
The theme of Friday night’s dance was “Kingdom Hearts Change the World!”
Organizers modeled the event after the Kingdom Hearts video game, which
features Disney characters. The Kingdom Hearts theme was incorporated into this year’s cookie sale theme, which is “Girl Scouts Change the World.”
“They can change the world if they put their minds to it,” said Rebeccah McConnaughay, a Girl Scout leader.
Girl Scouts were encouraged to attend Friday’s gathering dressed as their favorite Disney character. In addition, the gym was decorated with several displays featuring Disney heroes like Alice in Wonderland.
“It has all different characters that a bunch of people know,” said Amiyah Welling, a junior level Girl Scout. “It helps them get motivated and get where they want to sell cookies.”
Throughout the evening, the Scouts danced to festive music and even participated in a limbo contest.
But despite the celebratory atmosphere, there was a serious message to impart to the Scouts and their parents, McConnaughay said.
“We give them their safety tips on how to sell cookies, how to present cookies, how not to go door-to-door without an adult,” McConnaughay said. “It brings information to parents first and foremost.”
Ruthie Alexander, the Jefferson County Girl Scout Cookie Chairman, said the cookie sale helps teach the girls about goal-setting, decision-making, money management, people skills and business ethics.
These are skills they will use throughout their lives, Alexander said.