They had me at cookies.
The 13 girls of Junior Girl Scout Troop 4276 and the Cadette Girl Scout Troop 2315 at St. Mary's School baked 527 cookies in the shapes of hearts and basketballs to help raise funds for the American Heart Association.
They sold them at the school's open house for Catholic Schools Week and school basketball games last weekend. They'll sell them to fellow students during lunch periods today and Friday.
And that's only a bit of the work facing the nine fifth-graders going for Girl Scouting's Bronze Award and the four seventh-graders going for the Silver Award.
"It's exciting, but it's also a lot of work," said Emily Steybe, a Junior Girl Scout.
The Bronze Award requires the juniors to work in teams and complete a minimum of 20 hours of service. The Silver Award asks Cadettes to take on a leadership position and complete a minimum of 50 hours of service.
Getting back to the playground
The two troops have teamed up to organize two events to raise money for the American Heart Association: Jump Rope for Heart and Hoops for Heart.
Each Cadette is the head of one of four committees - advertising, fundraising, entertainment and administrative - with two or three juniors serving on the committee.
The theme is Put a Little Love in Your Heart. The goal: Raise $1,500.
St. Mary's students in grades one through five will participate in Jump Rope for Heart during regularly scheduled physical education classes Wednesday. The entertainment committee picked activities, including a relay race and the long-jump, for students to compete in.
Parent volunteers will supervise the games and distribute water, pretzels and oranges donated by Sendik's, said Alana Parey, head of that committee.
Sixth- through eighth-graders will take part in Hoops for Heart during the school day Feb. 11.
Prizes, such as water bottles, jump ropes and Frisbees, have been donated by the Milwaukee Bucks, Wells Fargo and other businesses.
"The whole point of this is to donate so that people can get good treatment and hopefully have a better life," Junior Scout Madeline Kalmer said.
The girls are totaling their donations every day, and marking their progress on a giant thermometer in the main hallway of the school.
Students who raise just $10 get a free ticket to a Bucks game.
It will be the administrative committee's job to collect and organize all the forms and donations to send to the heart association and to make sure all the students get their Bucks tickets, too.
School shows its spirit
The girls kicked off the project with a pep rally in the St. Mary's gym Jan. 28. The Cadettes served as emcees.
Speaker Joe Hoffman from the American Heart Association thanked the students for helping others and encouraged the kids to maintain an active lifestyle.
Then, with a 32-foot rope and to the cheers of their classmates, seven students tried to jump rope together.
The pep rally also featured games with a chance for the winner to try and break a heart-shaped piñata.
A baton twirling routine by Margaret Bodalski, junior captain of the Daley Debutants, got the crowd pumped up.
"It was a really fun time," Junior Scout Martha Lococo said.
When the whole project is finished, the girls will have to account for each hour of service and write a report on what they accomplished and learned, Cadette leader Liz Steybe said.
"I think it has really helped having both (troops) together to really bond, and for the older girls to be a good example for the younger girls," she said.
In addition, the girls have developed time management skills by having to balance planning for the event along with school work and other extracurricular activities.
Get in the Action
Anyone interested in donating to the St. Mary's Junior and Cadette Girl Scouts' campaign for the American Heart Association can contact troop leader Laurie Kalmer at firstname.lastname@example.org.
You go girl
The Junior Girl Scouts going for their Bronze Award are:
• Mckenna Fitterer
• Elizabeth Goblirsch
• Isabella Hyndiuk
• Elizabeth Janowski
• Madeline Kalmer
• Martha Lococo
• Eileen Rauh
• Annie Steigerwald
• Emily Steybe
The Cadette Girl Scouts going for their Silver Award are:
• Margaret Bodalski
• Alana Parey
• Haley Richardson
• Sara Steybe
Troop leaders are:
• Ann Marie Hyndiuk, Juniors
• Laurie Kalmer, Juniors
• Leslie Richardson, Cadettes
• Liz Steybe, Cadettes
Julie Ann Marra is uncovering the heart of Elm Grove: its people and places. Call her at (262) 446-6634 or e-mail email@example.com.
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