Gulfcoast Girl Scouts Donate Over 40K Cookies to Soldiers and Hometown Heroes

The Girl Scouts of Gulfcoast Florida donated 40,528 boxes of Cookies to soldiers, first responders, and other community heroes through their Hometown Heroes and Mints for Military programs.

Girl Scouts of Gulfcoast Florida is proud to host its annual Hometown Heroes and Mints for Military Cookie donation programs once again. This year, 40,528 boxes of Cookies were donated through the programs to local first responders, public servants, and essential workers, as well as soldiers stationed locally and overseas.

Girl Scouts have been delivering Cookies donated through the Hometown Heroes program at the Manatee County Sheriff’s Office, St. David’s Jubilee Center of Englewood Florida, Englewood Helping Hand, Inc., Englewood Meals on Wheels, Manatee Memorial Hospital, Bradenton Fire Department, the Bradenton Police Department, NCH North Naples Hospital, Lee Memorial Hospital, Iona McGregor Fire District in South Fort Myers, and to many other local first responders, teachers, public servants, and essential workers throughout the Gulfcoast footprint.

GSGCF’s Mints for the Military program allows customers to purchase Cookies to be donated to support active military personnel and veterans. Cookies are donated locally and overseas.

GSGCF partners with Soldiers Angels and Support our Troops to deliver Cookie donations to military and veterans. Soldiers Angels and Support our Troops are non-profit organizations with the mission to provide aid, comfort, and resources to the military and veteran community. A total of 25,000 boxes of Cookies were donated to Soldiers Angels and Support our Troops this year by Gulfcoast Girl Scouts.

Girl Scout troops throughout the Gulfcoast footprint have also been delivering Cookie donations locally through the GSGCF Hometown Heroes program. Over 15,000 boxes of Cookies were donated locally, and hand delivered by Girl Scouts to local first responders, schools, hospitals, and to other hometown heroes.

“Locally girls have been visiting fire stations, police stations, schools, hospitals, veterans’ facilities, and any other heroes that have helped us keep afloat over the last couple of years,” said Ashley Gill, GSGCF Product Program Manager. “The number of smiles we are causing with these donations is truly heartwarming.”

A Quick History of Girl Scout Cookies

Thin Mints, Tag-a-longs, and Trefoils – oh my! Next year, the Girl Scout Cookie legacy will turn 100 years old. You know how yummy the cookies are, and that Girl Scout troops use their cookie sale proceeds to help fund their many community service projects and other activities. But how did it all get started?

In 1917, only five years after Juliette Gordon Low founded Girl Scouts in the United States, the Mistletoe Troop of Muskogee, Oklahoma sold home-baked cookies in their high school cafeteria. As it is today, the girls used their earnings to pay for their troop programs.

In July 1922, Girl Scouts of the USA’s The American Girl magazine featured a cookie recipe from the Chicago, Illinois council. Throughout the 1920s, Girl Scouts across the country baked simple sugar cookies, packaged them in waxed paper, and sold them door to door at prices unheard of today: often 25-35 cents per dozen!


Commercially baked Girl Scout Cookies were first sold in 1934 by the Girl Scouts of Greater Philadelphia Council.  A year later, the Girl Scout Federation of Greater New York took things a step further with commercially baked cookies made using a die in the shape of a trefoil.  In 1936, the national Girl Scout organization began licensing commercial bakers to produce cookies for sale nationwide.

With the sugar, butter, and flour shortages of World War II, the Girl Scout Cookie program was put on hold. Beginning in 1944, Girl Scout calendars were produced and sold as an alternative fundraiser. Girl Scout Cookie sales enjoyed a healthy increase following the war, and the beloved tradition was back in full swing.

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Gulfcoast Girl Scouts gear up for cookie sales, 1950s.

A number of cookie variations have been offered over the years, including sandwich, shortbread, and chocolate mint varieties. Today, new varieties cater to consumers looking for healthier alternatives or gluten-free options.

Perhaps the greatest advance in the sale of Girl Scout Cookies came in 2015, with the online Digital Cookie platform, helping girls build 21st-century business skills.  One thing has remained the same, though. Through the Girl Scout Cookie Program, girls gain confidence and take great pride in their success, all while earning funds and helping make their communities a better place – one cookie at a time.

~Lori Tomlinson is the Manager of Communications and Marketing for Girl Scouts of Gulfcoast Florida, Inc.

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Sylvia M. is the TOP Entrepreneur for the 2015 Girl Scout Cookie Program!

Top Cookie Seller 2015Congratulations to Sylvia M. of Troop 802 in Fort Myers! She is the 2015 Girl Scouts of Gulfcoast Florida, Inc., TOP Girl Scout Cookie Entrepreneur. Sylvia sold 4,072 boxes of cookies. Sylvia is a 4th grader at Bonita Springs Preparatory Academy and Fitness Academy and also participates in Tae Kwon Do, soccer, tennis, basketball, drill team and gymnastics to name a few. She has been a Girl Scout for two years and she had this goal to become top cookie achiever since last year.

She learned that if you set a goal and really try, you’ll make it. Sylvia said, “Girl Scouts has taught me to be a unique person in a good way.”

Her troop is planning to go to Orlando on an overnight to Wet and Wild. Her favorite personal reward that she will receive is a spa day with Sue Stewart, CEO of Girl Scouts of Gulfcoast Florida, Inc.

Sylvia spent weekends at cookie booths from 10am-8pm and states that, “Girl Scout Cookies were my sleep.” She had to endure many types of weather: rain, cold, really hot, sunny. What helped her the most was a poster board progress chart which showed her customers how much more she had to sell.

Congratulations to Sylvia! She will share more about her success at the 2015 Young Women of Distinction Ceremony on May 17th in Punta Gorda. Details Here>>