Eight year-old Xandrea Jaffe stood tall Friday behind the boxed assortments of Samoas, Do-si-dos, and (of course) Thin Mints she hopes to sell this weekend.
“It’s really fun because you never know who you’ll find,” she said. “Today I found my grandma, and I haven’t seen her in a while.”
Normally during this time, Girls Scouts would be going door-to-door, selling the cookies people love. But with people’s health and safety in mind, the Girl Scouts of Eastern Washington and Northern Idaho organized a cookie drive-thru booth event with the help of volunteers. The event took place in the former Shopko parking lot on the South Hill, 4515 S. Regal St.
About 200,000 boxes had been sitting in a warehouse since mid-March, volunteer Lisa Rhodes said.
The pandemic closures have prevented the troops from being able to sell door-to-door or outside grocery stores, causing their revenue to fall by about 25%, as they try to stay healthy and safe, Rhodes said.
This is the only drive-thru booth event the group is organizing, but the Scouts will probably organize their own lemonade stands or booths to raise more money, Rhodes said. The money from sales help fund the Girl Scout council and the activities that teach them about friendship, resourcefulness and caring for the world around them, she added.
“We’re really trying to save our council and teach girls that they have to be flexible,” she said. “They’re very excited to go out and interact with people.”
Jaffe’s excitement was visible Friday while she stood wearing her brown vest filled with a colorful assortment of badges. She said she loves them all, but she particularly likes her “Wonders of Water” badge because she learned a lot about water conservation.
“We learn about the world and problems, and how we can help fix them,” Jaffe said.
Elizabeth Weaver’s Girl Scouts troop has been like a sisterhood since she joined in 2009, giving the 17-year-old a sense of belonging to something much bigger than herself.
“We learn how to become more independent,” she said. “It helps to remind me how I’m not alone, either, because we’re like family to each other.”
The Girl Scout troops had set up tents and laid out the Girl Scout Cookie boxes on their tables, waiting for customers to drive up.
Carol Gabel went around every booth. Her husband patiently waited inside the car as she loaded 17 boxes of Girl Scout cookies.
“This is a wonderful idea and it’s for a good cause,” she said. “And it gives girls the opportunity to work and participate in it.”
The sale will continue Saturday from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m.
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