Amber Smith joined her fellow Girls Scouts over the weekend, taking orders for those famous Girl Scout Cookies that are available just once a year.
"It's fun to sell Girl Scout cookies. I enjoy talking to people about the cookies and watching them when they place their orders," said Amber, who has been part of the scouting program since the first grade.
Amber expects local cookie sales to be high again this year.
"People always buy cookies because they taste so good!" she said.
Group leader Kim Havrilla agreed.
"We always have a very good response here in McDuffie County," said Ms. Havrilla who leads Group 714. The cookie sale runs through March 15, and orders will begin arriving Feb. 19.
"The girls sell them individually -- they sell quite a bit -- and we also sell them as a group in front of different businesses," she said.
This year, the girls will take orders for Thin Mints, Samoas, Trefoils, Tagalongs, All-Abouts, Double Dutch and reduced fat Lemon Coolers, and each box is $3.
Proceeds will benefit local programs.
"We get to pick our activities from our cookie money. Our group leader takes our suggestions, and we vote on the activities," Amber said. Some of the activities cookie money has funded for local girls include horseback riding, skating and pizza.
"It's tight to get to earn money for some of our activities," Amber said.
Susan Simmons, public relations director, CSRA Girl Scouts, said, "The Girl Scout cookie sale is the number one entrepreneurial activity for girls in the United States. Through the Girl Scout cookie sale, girls learn important life skills like goal-setting, fulfilling obligations, meeting and greeting people, keeping records and handling money," she said.
Last year across the CSRA, Girl Scouts sold 46,000 cases of cookies, representing more than 93 million cookies. Girl Scout cookies represent five percent of all cookies eaten in the United States. It is the number one brand beating out all others, she said.
The cookie got its start in the 1920's and 1930's, when Girl Scouts in different parts of the country baked simple sugar cookies at home with their mothers, wrapped them in waxed paper and sold them door-to-door to raise money for troop activities. In 1936, Girl Scouts of the USA launched the first national cookie sale program. Today the CSRA Girl Scouts is one of 317 councils nationwide that participate in the annual Girl Scout cookie sale.