Girl Scout cookie season starts Saturday

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Who’s craving Thin Mints? The wait is almost over.

Local Girl Scouts will be out taking orders and selling their famous cookies starting Saturday.

Count on your favorites, from Caramel deLites and Girl Scout S’mores to Peanut Butter Sandwich cookies and Lemonades.

Jennifer Smith, local Girl Scout membership director, said girls will have a kickoff event on Friday at the Moose Lodge. They will get some training on how to sell cookies and learn some safety tips, she said. They will be reminded not to go out without an adult and will learn about keeping up with their money. During the kickoff, they will also have a chance to sample the cookies they will be selling this year — starting at 9 o’clock Saturday morning.

Smith said she enjoys seeing the girls getting excited each year about setting and reaching their goals. Her own daughter, Emily, was local top seller in 2013 with 1,300 boxes of cookies. “It was really neat to see her push to get to that goal,” she said.

Emily said her goal this year is 1,000 boxes.

Emily, 13, started Girl Scouts when she was in kindergarten. Over the years, she has built up her customer base by selling at booths and in her neighborhood. Some customers buy three boxes at a time, and others buy a case or two, she said. There are 12 boxes in each case.

Smith recommends girls offer their cookies to anybody, from people at the restaurant where they are having dinner to their school teachers.

After the cookies are sold and the money counted, troops spend some of their proceeds on a community service project, Smith said, from food drives to projects helping local animals. They often save some money for a troop trip as well, she said.

According to a media release from the Girl Scouts, local councils and troops keep 100 percent of the net revenue raised through the Girl Scout cookie program, which ends this year on March 4.

To find a cookie booth near you, check girlscouts.org/cookies and type in your zip code. Listed Wilson locations for Saturday include Dick’s Hot Dog Stand at 1500 W. Nash St. and The Grocery Door at 1907 Nash St. Cookies are $4 per box.

Smith said more booths will be set up the following weekend. Some popular spots for booths here are Lowe’s, Walmart, Dunham Sports, Roses, Lynn’s Hallmark and Harris Teeter.

This year, the N.C. Coastal Pines Council is once again participating in Operation Cookie Drop. Through the program, cookies are donated to military men and women deployed around the world. In the last 12 years, the council has donated more than 900,000 boxes of cookies to the military. This year’s goal is to reach 1 million boxes. Donations are collected at booths, during Walkabout Week and through the council’s website, www.nccoastalpines.org.

If you know a girl interested in getting involved in Girl Scouts, visit www.nccoastalpines.org. There are 20 troops in Wilson and 225 Girl Scouts, Smith said.

Girl Scouts N.C. Coastal Pines includes 26,000 girls and 9,000 adult volunteers across 41 central and eastern North Carolina counties.