Local scouts visit home of founder

Published 8:11 pm Friday, August 7, 2009

Not many girls who enter Girl Scouting are privileged to wear a Juliette Low Birthplace Pin, but 12 members of two Girl Scout troops in Troy are now so honored.

To wear the pin the Scouts must visit the home of Juliette Gordon Low, the founder of the Girls Scouts of America, in Savannah, Gia.

Girl Scout troops 9163 and 9165 of Troy visited Savannah July 30 – Aug. 2 for the primary purpose of learning more about the founder of the Girl Scouts of America and about the Scouting program.

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“Juliette Low was born, raised and spent much of her life in Savannah,” said Kim Kersey, leader of Troop 9163. “Our visit to Savannah was a heritage visit, and the girls learned a lot and had a really great time, as did the five chaperones.”

A highlight of the visit was touring the house where Juliette Low was born.

“Only Girl Scouts who visit her birthplace are allowed to wear the pin and are called ‘Daughters of the House,’ so that is a real honor,” Kersey said.

Not only did the Scouts tour the house, they were also invited to stay for a parlor visit.

“We attended what is called a special interest session where we heard stories about Juliette Low and learned tidbits of information about her that few people know,” Kersey said.

“We also got to play games like the ones Juliette Low played,” said Jessica Shipman, a member of Troop 9163. “She liked to play dolls, and we made yarn dolls like she had and we got to bring our dolls home.”

Following the home visit, the Girl Scouts participated in a pinning ceremony and received pins and patches in recognition of their visit to the home of the founder of the Girls Scouts of America.

“One of the patches was the Circle of Friends patch that is awarded to those who support the efforts to preserve the Low’s birthplace,” Kersey said.

The Girl Scouts also visited places of interest in the area including Tybee Island, where they learned about the ecosystem there.

“Littering the beaches is not only unsightly, it is also dangerous to the animal life and the environment,” Kersey said. “So we picked up trash along the beach as we walked.”

Jessica said one of her favorite things to do was making her own meal at Kitchens on the Square. She made a sandwich with a French name but it was “really just ham and cheese with mustard.”

The Scouts earned a cooking badge for making – and eating – their own meal.

They also dined at a Moroccan restaurant and “had” to eat with their hands, Jessica said. Under the cloak of darkness, the Scouts toured the haunted city of Savannah by carriage. And, “we were a little scared.”

The Girl Scouts earned a “Discover Savannah” patch along with some fun patches.

“We all had a great time, but we didn’t get to do nearly all of the things that we wanted to do,” Kersey said. “All of the girls want to go back. Visiting Savannah and the home of Juliette Low is certainly something that we’ll do again.”

The Girl Scouts’ visit to Savannah was paid for, in part, by donations for local businesses. The Scouts wish to thank Troy Bank & Trust, Dr. Allen Blackmon, Dr. Regina Hendricks, Pennzoil, the UPS Store, Haircutters and the Half Shell for their support and Schwan’s Food Delivery Service for the fundraising opportunity.

There are many adventures awaiting those who join the Girl Scouts of America and that opportunity is open to girls ages eight and up in the Troy and Pike County areas.

For more information, call Becky Benson, field executive, at 334-494-0616.