Local Girl Scout troop serves cookies, sundaes to first responders


From one end of the table to the other, local first responders were greeted with smiles and served s’mores Girl Scout cookies and ice cream sundaes.

It was a great way to cool off on a 90-degree day.

More importantly, it was a way to show appreciation to the men and women who serve the community on a daily basis.

On Friday evening, members of Girl Scout Troop 135 in Seymour invited personnel with the Seymour Police Department, Seymour Fire Department and Jackson County Emergency Medical Services to stop by the police department so they could Share S’More Love.

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In 2017, Girl Scouts of the USA added the s’mores cookie to its cookie sales offerings. Through the Share S’More Love initiative, the organization allowed troops to give cookies away to anyone of their choosing on National S’mores Day.

Troop 135 chose first responders, and ice cream was added because it was a hot summer day, said Chealsy Parr, the troop leader along with Kristie Christiansen.

The police officers, firefighters and EMS personnel had big choices to make: A waffle bowl or a styrofoam bowl, vanilla ice cream or cookies and cream, plain M&Ms or peanut M&Ms and chocolate, strawberry or caramel syrup. Plus, they could add brownies, nuts or whipped cream. And of course, there was a platter with s’mores cookies.

“We thought to do it because they work really hard each and every day for our community, and we wanted to help them get some food and some fun stuff to eat because they deserve it working for our community,” Troop 135 member Kensley Stith, 8, said.

Girl Scout Aayla Spurrier, 8, said she likes being a part of an organization that focuses on serving others.

“It’s fun, and we get to serve some stuff for some good working people,” she said. “They need a break off of their job because they work really hard, and they need a cold snack before they start.”

Ella Doran, 8, agreed.

“They work really hard, and we think that they deserve this,” she said.

The girls also checked out the inside of a firetruck and a police car and learned more about the different careers.

“It’s fun to talk to police officers and learn some new stuff and help serve some stuff for our community,” Kensley said.

“They want to help because it’s nice to help people,” Girl Scout Elizabeth Elijah, 7, said. “They are nice, and if you have a fire, they come as quickly as they can, and they help people to survive when they have a fire.”

The 13-member troop, which was established three years ago and meets at Cornerstone Community Church, is all about giving back to the community, Parr said.

She reached out to each department to let them know about the event.

“They all were over the moon for us,” Parr said. “They were really receptive, super-excited.”

The troop leaders, the Girl Scouts and their parents all were excited, too.

“They lay their lives down for us if they have to, so we just want to say ‘thank you’ because it’s the least we can do,” Christiansen said.

“We wanted the girls to be able to have a hands-on experience to be able to serve them as a thank-you because that’s helping them grow just by doing something simple like this,” she said. “They are learning from it, and they are saying ‘thank you,’ and I think that’s really important, especially with Girl Scouts and just trying to help build them up.”

Parr said it’s also good for the girls to have positive interaction with the first responders.

“It’s a good way for our girls to meet these people in not a scary situation,” she said. “If they were ever faced in a scary situation or an unfortunate situation, they are not scared of these people because a lot of people are, and they are not people to be scared of. They are people that are there to help the community. It puts them face to face with them and getting to know them.”

The first responders appreciated the Girl Scouts’ gesture.

“It was a very nice setup, it really was,” said John Kirby, a battalion chief with the fire department. “It’s good to see kids taking time to appreciate public safety, and that’s encouraging for the future.”

Firefighter Jason O’Neal had a good time interacting with the Girl Scouts.

“It means a lot any time someone supports what you’re doing, but coming from kids, they look up to us,” he said. “The fact that they are interested in what we do and show their appreciation, kids are special. It’s about all you can say. They are special. I’m glad they look at us as role models and someone to look up to.”

Firefighter Matt Montgomery seconded those thoughts.

“We just really appreciate it,” he said.

Jacob Florine, an officer with the police department, said it was great having the cookies and sundaes available right outside his workplace.

Even better, he liked talking to each of the Girl Scouts.

“We spend a lot of our time serving the community, and it’s nice when the community shows appreciation for that,” Florine said. “When they turn around and serve us, it’s always a nice gesture, and you take that to heart.”

To go along with some s’mores cookies, Florine chose cookies and cream ice cream and added a little bit of each topping.

“I didn’t want to leave anybody out,” he said, as each Girl Scout had a different role, either scooping ice cream or putting on a topping.

Florine said it’s good to see the Girl Scouts learning the importance of giving back.

“Starting at an early age is important, creating that foundation of community service and serving others, helping the community that you live in and the people that you live with,” he said. “We’re all neighbors. It’s a small community, and it’s nice to be able to help each other out when we get a chance. It’s good to start them out early and establish those roles.”

For the troop leaders, it’s all about spreading positivity in the community — in this case, one cookie and one scoop of ice cream at a time.

“That’s what we’re trying to teach our girls, that it’s all about community and it’s about being positive and spreading love,” Parr said.

“I don’t think we could ask for a better group of girls, honestly,” Christiansen said. “They’ve been really great. We’re proud of them.”

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