Generation Next

It’s time to order Samoas and Thin Mints from your local Girl Scout.
’Tis the Girl Scout Cookie Season

By Jaclyn Emerick

Whether you prefer waiting for your neighborhood Girl Scout to drag an apple-red wagon piled high with an assortment of cookies up your driveway or stopping at the cookie booth on the way out of Publix, the time is here to satisfy your taste buds with this once-a-year treat.

Pre-orders for Girl Scout cookies begin Jan. 6 and continue through Jan. 20. Girls will deliver preordered cookies between Feb. 10 and March 4. Girl Scouts will continue to sell at cookie booths starting Feb. 17.

While many scouts are taking to cookie booths to sell faster, Audrey Moore, product manager for the Girl Scout Council of the Apalachee Bend, is urging girls to revert back to the person-to-person pre-sale approach this cookie season.

“Last year, a girl sold 2,855 boxes of cookies, which was our record,” Moore said. “We also had 34 Divas,” girls who sell at least 1,000 boxes of cookies.

Each box is $3.50. Of the total, 55 cents per box goes to the seller’s troop, while the rest is used to pay for the cookies and sales incentives and to support local Girl Scout programs and properties. Within the Apalachee Bend Council’s 15-county area, 390,936 boxes were sold last year.

Little Brownie Bakers has been baking Girl Scout cookies for more than 25 years. Weekly ingredients include 21 truckloads of flour – more than a million pounds – 650,000 pounds of sugar and 500,000 pounds of chocolate coating. Cookies are baked en masse in ovens that are between 100 to 280 feet long.

This year, you can expect to see a new cookie called the Little Brownie.

“The cookie is chocolate-flavored and bite-size,” Moore said. “It’s a chewy treat, both sugar-free and diabetic-friendly.”

All Girl Scout cookies are kosher and have no preservatives and no trans fats. They freeze well, so they make great snacks long after the delivery date. 

Top sellers are, and always have been, the Thin Mint (25 percent of sales) and Samoa (19 percent) cookies.

“We’re hoping for a record-breaking year in terms of sales.” Moore said. We’re shooting for a 3-percent increase over last year.”


Digging Deep at the Bottom of the World

By Terri-Ann Morrison

Students at Holy Comforter Episcopal School and Florida State University’s Antarctic Research Facility are participating in an e-mail project that will help us better understand global warming and its effects on the environment. The project, ANDRILL, is the newest geological drilling program set to recover sediment core samples from the Antarctic region.

Students selected to represent Holy Comforter are in third, fourth, fifth and eighth grades. The students met with Florida State Geology Curator Matthew Olney and FSU graduate students from the Antarctic Research Facility before the FSU team headed south, where they will stay from mid-October to early January. FSU team members are corresponding with the Holy Comforter students through e-mails, answering their questions relating to the project, and will visit Holy Comforter when they return in January for a post-expedition sharing session.


Searching for the Best & Brightest 

If you’re a public or private high school senior with the right stuff, you might have what it takes to be named a winner of the Best & Brightest Awards. The program, inaugurated last year, gives cash awards totaling $26,250 to students who have been nominated by their schools in one of 15 different categories. While organizers are seeking students who have had academic success and show poise in a personal interview, the most important criteria is a record of service and leadership in school and the community.

The deadline for applications from the high schools is Feb. 1 (check with the guidance department for your school’s deadline). Interviews will be held in March and the winners – first place, runner up and honorable mention – will be announced May 9 during an awards ceremony.

The awards are sponsored by WorldClass Schools of Leon County, a program of the Greater Tallahassee Chamber of Commerce, as well as the Tallahassee Democrat and Ron Sachs Communications.

Nominations must be submitted to the awards coordinator at a student’s high school. Information, deadlines and applications are available online by visiting

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