Jenny Jones, marketing director for Girl Scouts Heart of the South, said many girls began making phone calls to place advance orders Saturday morning before going to an afternoon kickoff meeting.
Hundreds of Girl Scouts gathered at Wesley United Methodist Church in Tupelo on Saturday to make posters for their cookie sales from Jan. 5-28 and learn about customer service.
The money raised from selling cookies helps fund each individual Girl Scout troop and the Heart of the South council.
“This year we’re trying to decide if we’re going to Florida or Chattanooga,” said troop leader Anita Ambrose. “In Chattanooga we’ll visit sites like the Trail of Tears or in Florida we’ll go to some of the theme parks and look for some educational components with that.”
The troops also will use the money to fund community service projects.
Ambrose said the way they fund the trips is to see how much the trip will cost in cookie sales instead of dollars. This year’s goal is 750 boxes of cookies sold at $3.50 each for every girl in Ambrose’s troop.
Maidie Clowers, 14, has been selling cookies for seven or eight years and said it’s a pretty easy gig.
“People love them and they taste really good,” she said. “Just telling people you have Girl Scout cookies works. They come to you.”
Emily Marshal, 15, has been at it nine years, and she doesn’t even have to mention Savannah Smile, Thin Mints, Samoas, Do-Si-Dos, Tagalongs, Trefoils, Dulce de Leche or Thank You Berry Much.
“Just tell people you’re a Girl Scout and it’s the first thing they ask about,” she said.
Katherine Tackitt, 16, has been selling cookies for 10 years and said booth time in mid-February will be best for sales.
“I do more of my sales during the cookie booth season,” she said. “I’ll take pre-orders from family but it’s easier to sell when you have the cookies in hand.”
She said people have trouble turning down a box of Girl Scout cookies when they can see it.
Mya Foster, 7, and Stasia Dillard, 9, both worked on “Donate Cookies” posters Saturday to hang at their booths in February. Foster has been helping sell cookies since before she was old enough to be a Scout herself. She said the best part is getting to take some home and eat them.
Last year, the 59-county Heart of the South council sold 1,689,959 boxes of Girl Scout cookies, of which 13,293 were sent to American military troops overseas.