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Archive for Tuesday, February 20, 2007

Girl Scout Cookies hit crunchtime

Shortage of volunteers causes distribution snag, but troops don’t crumble

February 20, 2007

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Molly McMahan, a KU freshman from Prairie Village and a Kappa Kappa Gamma sorority member, helps sort the 6,447 cases of Girl Scout Cookies delivered Monday at the Douglas County 4-H Fairgrounds community building. Area scout troops picked up the cookies for distribution Monday afternoon.

Molly McMahan, a KU freshman from Prairie Village and a Kappa Kappa Gamma sorority member, helps sort the 6,447 cases of Girl Scout Cookies delivered Monday at the Douglas County 4-H Fairgrounds community building. Area scout troops picked up the cookies for distribution Monday afternoon.

Kansas University Kappa Kappa Gamma sorority members Samantha Smith, Dallas sophomore, left, and Megan Hennessy, St. Louis sophomore, help sort cases of Girl Scout Cookies at the Douglas County 4-H Fairgrounds. The women were volunteering for their sorority Monday morning.

Kansas University Kappa Kappa Gamma sorority members Samantha Smith, Dallas sophomore, left, and Megan Hennessy, St. Louis sophomore, help sort cases of Girl Scout Cookies at the Douglas County 4-H Fairgrounds. The women were volunteering for their sorority Monday morning.

The flow of cookies into cars is typically a smooth one for Girl Scout cookie masters.

Drive into the tin-roofed building at the Douglas County 4-H Fairgrounds, and one of a typical 100-or-so volunteers would load cases of Thin Mints or Caramel deLites into the backs of minivans and SUVs.

"It's like a one-stop, drive-through kind of thing," Girl Scout Cookie coordinator Kris Moyer explained.

But on Monday, the annual Girl Scout Cookie drop-off day for local troops didn't go as smoothly as it could have.

Only a handful of volunteers showed up to help troop leaders and cookie masters - moms in charge of picking up and distributing the more than 77,000 boxes - load cases into cars.

"I'm thinking there was a communication error," Moyer said.

By about 4 p.m., generally considered peak loading time, eight members of Kansas University sororities and fraternities shuffled dollies around the Horse Arena's dirt floor.

Aside from a little stress, Moyer said, everyone got their shortbreads in fairly short order.

At the entrance to the Horse Arena, cookie official Cathy Gard pulled up in a black SUV, a child peering out of the back seat window.

"We don't have a whole lot of people here," Moyer told Gard. Moyer informed the child, "We're going to recruit your help."

But Gard got there early, so the handful of Kappa Kappa Gamma and Alpha Gamma Delta sorority volunteers helped load her order for Troop 531. Now, the cookies can, at least for a few days, stack up in the corners of her home.

Too much of a temptation?

"Nah," Gard said.

But Carol Casteel, the cookie master for Troop 723, said that boxes of chocolatey, peanut-buttery snacks can prove too tempting for her.

"They're not going to be at my house," Casteel said.

Casteel said her troop gathered orders for 53 cases - mostly by asking door-to-door in last month's frigid cold.

Moyer said that 65 troops picked up cookies from the Horse Arena on Monday, and by late afternoon, almost every case was on its way to a scout mom's home.

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