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  • Meet Hoot - She Makes Our Camps Amazing


    Camp life is the best life, and no one knows that better than Spirit of Nebraska’s new Camp Program Manager Taylor “Hoot” Jackson, who is bringing oodles of experience, training, enthusiasm and her love of the outdoors to our Girl Scout camps!

    Taylor has been with Spirit of Nebraska for two years and is very excited to take on the challenge of this new role. Our mission is close to her heart, and she feels that Girl Scouting provides girls with the structure to try new things and make lifelong friends. She knows girls will take their experiences and put them to excellent use by making the world a better place.

    “Our staff, volunteers and alumnae are great role models, and Girl Scouts provides a safe environment where girls can take chances,” Taylor said.

    She comes to Girl Scouts with an interesting and perfectly-suited background. She holds a bachelor’s degree in recreation administration, has led campouts and Scout classes at Omaha’s Henry Doorly Zoo & Aquarium, and challenged many students to “reach higher” at the climbing wall at UNO’s Outdoor Venture Center.

    “I’m interested in developing outdoor programs and creating exciting partnerships with other organizations,” Taylor says. “I have a passion for collaboration and hope to recruit experts [who will] provide girls with unique opportunities, such as bringing a chiropterologist to Camp Crossed Arrows to teach girls about bats.” (Yes, bats live at the top of the Troop House – not inside!)</...



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  • Honoring Three Exceptional Girl Scouts


    Every year, we honor outstanding Nebraska Girl Scouts for their extraordinary leadership. Like all Gold Award recipients, these young women took matters into their own hands, generated sustainable change in their communities and made the world a better place!

    This year’s “Pat Meyer Nebraska Young Women of Distinction” was awarded to Michaela Lentsch of Omaha, and Michaela Ott and Anna Vaughn of Blair during Spirit of Nebraska’s annual meeting.

    These girls inspire us and make us proud!

    Michaela Lentsch focused her Gold Award project on remodeling the Lost and Found Clothing Center at Trinity United Methodist Church in Ralston. She built rolling displays and tiered shelves, sewed valances, made new signs, painted a mural, provided toys for the children’s area, bought new storage totes, created bulletin boards and bought new accessory displays. Because of Michaela’s hard work, those who shop at the center can easily find fashionable and affordable clothing.

    Michaela Ott wanted her Gold Award to encourage physical fitness in a way that would be interesting and fun. Ott designed and built a Human Foosball arena at Camp Fontanelle in Fontanelle, Neb. The human-sized replica of the popular recreational game promotes teamwork, coordination and physical activity. Michaela publicized the arena through fliers and her fitness blog.

    Anna Vaughn saw the need for change after discovering that the preemie hats provided to local hospi...



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  • A Love Letter to our Volunteers


    Dear Girl Scout Volunteers,

    This month, we celebrate you and the priceless love you give girls every day through your unwavering dedication to their success. The future is bright, and you’re lighting the way!

    Yes, you, our extraordinary volunteers—who tirelessly give of yourselves to help unleash the leader in every Girl Scout. During National Volunteer Month, we want you to know that we see you, we appreciate you, and yes—we love you! We don’t say it nearly enough, but we didn’t want another day to go by without letting you know how we truly feel.

    National Volunteer Month is about community, and that’s what you build. It’s about sharing your heart, and that’s exactly what you do—without limits and without hesitation.

    So, when you’re tired and running around coordinating meetings and events, and maybe even losing a little steam, we want you to remember this: every day as a Girl Scout volunteer, you power life-changing adventure, opportunity-rich learning and powerful growth for girls who will become the leaders and happy, healthy, problem-solvin’, barrier-breakin’ change-makers our world needs.

    And while they’re having the time of their lives making forever friends and trying new things, they’re learning that anything is possible. Their confidence is rising, and they’re shedding their fears. They’re raising their hands, sharing ideas and believing in their own inherent power right from the start, all because you </...



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  • We’re Giving Away a Cookie Car!


    To celebrate 100 years of Girl Scouts selling cookies, we are giving away a sweet 2017 Toyota RAV4 – known as the Cookie Car! This awesome prize was made possible through a generous donation by Baxter Toyota La Vista.

    The contest is designed to help our Girl Scouts reach their Cookie Program sales goals. Although no purchase is required to register for a chance to win the car, a special code is needed to enter. You can acquire the code from a Girl Scout during the cookie sale.

    To find cookies near you, use the cookie locator here or call the Cookie Hotline: 877.636.4684.  

    You can enter to win and see complete Girl Scout Cookie Car contest rules here!

    The RAV4 will be awarded by random drawing to a resident of Nebraska (excluding Dakota County) or Carter Lake, Iowa, who is 25 years or older, at the conclusion of the Cookie Program.

    When you purchase Girl Scout Cookies, you are supporting the girls in your community! All the proceeds stay in the state to benefit the Spirit of Nebraska council and i...



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  • An “art”-Venture Results in Fun Patch


    Annika Krizmanich didn’t just create a design for our artVenture patch contest—this 11-year-old artist and innovator did her research and incorporated past artVenture art into her entry! Annika’s resourcefulness certainly paid off when her design was selected as the winning entry in this year’s patch contest.

    artVenture is a unique Spirit of Nebraska program that inspires Girl Scouts to tap into their imagination when they work side-by-side with local, professional artists. In this collaborative environment, amazing works of art are created.

    Because artVenture is all about collaboration, Lori Williamson, our council program manager, wanted girl input for the artVenture fun patch. She decided that the best way to get girls involved would be for them design and create the patch! Every girl who participates in artVenture gets a patch, and it is an honor to have your design is selected!

    The Girl Scout who creates the winning design also gets to team up with a Spirit of Nebraska graphic specialist and learns how to take the art from design to patch production. Yet another art exploration opportunity!

    Annika was super excited about winning and for the chance to work with a professional designer.

    Designer Lucia Kroeger Renz introduced Annika to the Girl Scout color palette and coached the young artist on how to incorporate certain colors into...



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  • Where in the World is Juliette?


    Juliette Gordon Low (the flat version) embarked on a great adventure last summer with Papillion Troop 41901.

    Each girl created her own, unique Flat Juliette, who then became their travel companion. Whether the girls visited a local pool or journeyed far from home, Juliette joined them!

    Flat Juliette – and her Girl Scout guides – explored the natural beauty of Yellowstone National Park and marveled at the great monuments of Washington D.C. She delighted in Disney World’s rides and revisited her birthplace in Savannah, Georgia. She tried to stay dry while kayaking and earned a Junior Ranger badge from the National Parks Service.

    When school started, Juliette packed her bags and headed to other states and countries, via the U.S. Postal Service! She’s sending photos back to her friends in Papillion as she attempts to visit every state in America and every continent on the planet.

    Check out Flat Juliette’s escapades in our Flickr gallery.

    Click the image below to view the entire gallery.

    Flat Juliette Adventure

    Get a pattern to make your very own Flat Juliette...



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  • Celebrating 100 Years of Girl Scouts Selling Cookies


    It all began in 1917, when an industrious group of Girl Scouts started baking and selling cookies out of a school cafeteria to finance their troop activities. Since then, the start-up that came from those humble beginnings has grown into the largest girl-run business in the world.

    To commemorate 100 years of the first known sale of cookies by Girl Scouts, a delicious, new flavor will be available when cookies go on sale in Nebraska on February 3. The highly anticipated “Girl Scout S’mores” is a modern twist on the time-honored campfire treat.

    No matter which cookies customers choose, their purchase is an important investment in the girls in their community. The proceeds from the Cookie Program stay in Nebraska to support the local Girl Scout council and its 21,000 girl and adult members. Girls use their funds for their many troop activities, including community service projects.

    When girls participate in the Girl Scout Cookie Program, they also develop important life skills such as goal setting, decision making, money management, business ethics and people skills.

    “Each box of Girl Scout Cookies sold helps girls do incredible things, follow their passions, take the lead in their lives and communities, and change the world,” said Fran Marshall, Chief Executive Officer, Girl Scouts Spirit of Nebraska.

    Cookies will be sold through March 12.

    The 2017 Girl Scout Cookie line-up: S’mores, Thin Mints, Caramel deLites, Peanut Butter Patties...



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  • STEAMing into a New Girl Scout Year


    Girls across the state began their Girl Scouting year with a big bang as they dove into the world of STEAM (Science, Technology, Engineering, Arts and Math).

    Hundreds of girls learned about the STEAM disciplines through hands-on activities that included:

    • extracting DNA from their cheek cells
    • using crime scene investigation tools to solve a mock mystery
    • coding with Google representatives
    • experiencing virtual reality
    • learning the science of hockey with Lincoln Stars players
    • enjoying an explosive science show featuring pops, bangs and dazzling flashes 
    • performing fun experiments with museum curators, archeologists and college professors

    Girl Scouts has a long history of encouraging girls to participate in STEM. The first badges – “Electrician” and “Flyer”– were introduced in 1913. STEAM adds the “A” for artistic expression.

    According to the Girl Scout Research Institute’s study “Generation STEM,” there is a correlation between exposure to and girls’ interest in STEM. While 81 percent of girls say they are interested in pursuing STEM careers, only 13 per...



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  • 10 Ways You Can Be Brilliant with the Fall Product Program!


    Learn 5 Essential Skills

    The Fall Product Program is an amazing introduction to running a business. When girls participate, they earn more than just patches and incentives, they gain hands-on experience that helps them succeed in the future (the 5 Skills aren't just for cookies).

    1. Goal Setting

    2. Decision-Making

    3. Money Management

    4. People Skills

    5. Business Ethics

    6. Earn Awesome Incentives

    Girls love getting the super cute incentives, as much as we love giving them! Great patches, a Chevron Moon Chair, Bluetooth speakers, jewelry, plush Koalas, GoPro video cameras and even a chance to design a personalized Koala patch! Here’s a sneak peek as this year’s swag.

    7. Start Building Troop Funds NOW

    It’s a long time until our 2017 Cookie Program and there is too much cool stuff to do right now! Earn start-up money to fund Troop activities, buy supplies, do community service projects and get the year started right!

    8. Sweet, Sweet Products

    There are so many scrumptious products from which to choose, including Peanut Butter Bears, Dulce De Leche Owls, Dark Chocolate...



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  • Exposed to Violent News...Now What?


    by Shannon Peterson, Communication Specialist, Girl Scouts Spirit of Nebraska.

    Every time my 5-year-old daughter sees the news on television, she covers her ears and yells, “Turn it off! Turn it off!” Even if it’s a weather forecast or a feature story about cuddly puppies. If we’re at a restaurant and the news is on, she must sit with her back to the television.

    The news freaks her out.

    It started this summer. She was visiting her grandparents in Minnesota when a man was shot by a police officer just a few miles from their home. There were protests in the Twin Cities, and non-stop news updates. The broadcast coverage ramped up even higher after five police officers were killed by a sniper in Dallas the next day.

    My family was particularly tuned in because my brother – her uncle – is a law enforcement officer in the Twin Cities. It was scary, it was close. She heard the worry in their voices and the television was trumpeting bad news in the background.

    For all of us, the summer overflowed with violence. Shootings and acts of terrorism were inescapable. Even the most conscientious parents can’t fully protect their children, not in today’s digital world – with smart phone alerts, social media posts and 24-7 news stations.

    Because those violent images and videos can traumatize little ones, you may be wondering how to handle these difficult subjects when talking to children.

    This article from Girl Scouts of the USA’...



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  • Reaching Out to Refugee Girls


    By Renae Ninneman, Program and Outreach Coordinator in Lincoln

    Refugee middle and high school girls have a unique struggle. Not only do they face the same regular “girl struggles” as their native-born sisters, they face them with extra barriers. It’s hard to balance a life between two cultures, all while learning a new language and being a teenager.

    We are so thrilled to announce that a new grant from the Nebraska Crime Commission will provide our unique Girl Scout Leadership Experience to refugee girls in grades six through 12 in Lincoln!  

    Girls Scouts can offer these unique girls a space to feel comfortable in their new home, and give them an opportunity to grow their leadership skills.

    Nebraska is a hot spot for refugee resettlement. Our state has become fifth in the nation in refugee resettlement per capita. Typically, we welcome 700-850 refugees to Nebraska each year; people who fly to Nebraska directly from their refugee camps. We also welcome many refugees as secondary migrants, which means they were resettled in another state, but decided to move to Nebraska.

    Our state has many jobs and a low cost-of-living, and that appeals to many people, refugees included.

    I have either volunteered or worked with refugees for the better part of a decade, and I am excited to head up this new project. Through my work, I know that not everyone understands what it means to be a refugee. A lot of people use the word, and t...



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  • Have S’more Fun with Girl Scouts


    Join us for a Girl Scout S’more registration event! Play games, sing songs, make a craft, enjoy a S’more and discover how AMAZING it is to be in Girl Scouts!

    Parents are invited to come for the last half hour for a short performance by the girls and for information regarding their daughter becoming a Girl Scout.

    Pick the date/location that works best. These events are for girls who are new to Girl Scouting! Please RSVP so we know you’re coming.

    Cost is $6 per girl* and includes a craft, snack and fun patch.
    *$5 of each admission is applied toward your daughter’s Girl Scout membership the day/evening of the event!  

    Registration events will be added, so check back for new locations!

    Sunday, October 9, 1-3 p.m.
    Grades K-8
    Girl Scouts Camp Catron (Inside the lodge!)
    609 N. 60th Rd., Nebraska City
    Register by Tuesday, October 4
    RSVP by email to Kayleigh Erskine or call 402.476.7539.

    Saturday, October 22, 9:30-11:30 a.m.
    Grades K-8
    Eastridge Presbyterian Church
    1135 Eastridge Dr., Lincoln
    Register by Monday, October 17
    RSVP by email to Kayleigh Erskine or call 402.476.7539.

  • Full STEAM Ahead: Plan an Incredible Year


    By Amanda Schmidt, Volunteer Development Specialist

    Calling all leaders, scientists, artists, campers and explorers! It’s time to start planning your NEXT amazing Girl Scout adventure. Have you ever wanted to build a roller coaster? Create your own app? Meet a local best-selling author? Now is your chance!  
     
    The NEW Annual Program Book is here! We’ve planned another amazing Girl Scout year just for you. We have programs on everything from the Total Solar Eclipse, gardening and engineering to artVenture, camps and travel opportunities. Invent, create and discover as you Build Your Future: Full STEAM Ahead!



    Grab your program book or go online and explore all the possibilities! Here are some awesome things we know you'll love:

      Build Your Future: Full STEAM Ahead is our new theme. STEAM stands for Science, Technology, Engineering, Arts and Math, so...


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  • Girls “Go Gold” and Change the World


    We are very proud of the eight Nebraska girls who this year, earned their Gold Award, the highest achievement in Girl Scouting. We celebrated their accomplishments at ceremonies this spring, and wanted to introduce you to these dedicated and compassionate young women, who have made the world a better place.

    Since 1916, millions of Girl Scouts have positively impacted their communities and the world with their creative and sustainable projects. As we mark the Gold Award’s Centennial, we invite you to join us as we “Celebrate 100 Years of Changing the World” and recognize the girls who did what it took to “Go Gold.”

    In case you didn’t know, the Gold Award is earned by girls in grades nine through 12, who demonstrate extraordinary leadership. Girls create what Girl Scouts of the USA refers to as a “Take Action” project; one that solves a community problem—not only in the short term, but for years to come.

    “Earning the Girl Scout Gold Award is not an easy task. It requires perseverance, skill, the creation of a plan and the execution of a Take Action project that addresses an issue important to that girl,” said Fran Marshall, Chief Executive Officer, Girl Scouts Spirit of Nebraska. “Gold Award recipients become members of an elite group of Girl Scouts who recognize that the award is not one celebratory moment, but a transformative step on the journey to becoming a respected young woman, who will use her talents to make the world a better place.”...



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  • Welcome to Our Website!


    We are proud to present our newest asset, created with you in mind! We hope you find this snazzy site easy to navigate and that your browsing experience is streamlined.

    Keep in mind that the information you need is STILL here! We just rearranged the furniture a little. Things might be in under a new header or dressed up a little differently. Can’t find something, let us know!

    Here are the TOP six things you need to know about this new site:

      The Volunteer Resources section is still a main feature, but reorganized to simplify the process of finding the things you need. Less words and more value! You’ll see your trainings, webinars, Safety Checkpoints, tools and the information that will enhance your Girl Scouting experience. Click around, you may discover resources you never knew existed! Look up! Forms now have their own page, and they’re easy to find on the TOP navigation bar of the home page. We’ve re-organized them in a way that makes form-finding a breeze! Looking for a digital copy of the Annual Program Book, the latest Juliette Gazette, e-Newsletters or the Volunteer Guide? Bookmark...


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  • Gold Award Girls Recognized with Special Honor


    There’s no denying that Girl Scouting is fun. Girls do cool things and build lifelong friendships. We also know that at every Girl Scout’s core, is the drive and commitment for making the world a better place.

    This spring, we honored three outstanding Nebraska Girl Scouts for taking action and making a sustainable difference in their communities and beyond!

    This year’s “Pat Meyer Nebraska Young Women of Distinction” was awarded to Hannah Wick of Pleasanton, Johnna Halsted of North Platte and Natalie Lingenfelter of Plainview during April’s Spirit of Nebraska annual meeting.

    These girls amaze us and make us proud!

    Hannah wanted to take a stand against bullying, so she took action in her school when planning her Gold Award project. She focused on how to create a chain reaction of care, kindness and compassion among students. She started a “Take a Walk for Kindness,” created and hung inspirational posters, went from classroom to classroom to talk about kindness, and invited female community leaders to speak about positivity and finding self-worth. Her chain reaction worked! Hannah saw a definite change in how her fellow students treated each other.

    Johnna drew from personal experience for her Gold Award project. When someone close to her lost a child to Sudden Infant Death Syndrome (SIDS), her compassion compelled her to educate her community about SIDS. Johnna made and distributed informational brochures to local doctors’ offi...



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  • Girl Scouts and OPD Clean up Omaha Parks


    Girl Scouts from North Omaha recently teamed up with the Omaha Black Police Officers Association to make the world a better place!

    Working with police officers and the Nebraska Watershed Network, Girl Scout Troop 84178 from Central Park Elementary beautified Fontenelle Park, while Troop 84281 from Sherman Elementary worked its magic at Levi Carter Park.

    At each park, the groups picked up trash and tested the pond or lake water as part of community service projects to protect the planet. Then, in true Girl Scout style, they roasted S’mores with police officers and celebrated a job well done!

    Both troops are part of a Girl Scouts Spirit of Nebraska initiative that brings Girl Scouting activities to girls living in metro areas classified as underserved. The Girl Scout council provides structure, volunteer support and financial assistance to girls who would otherwise not have the resources to participate.

    Our Community Outreach program gives EVERY Nebraska girl the opportunity to be a Girl Scout!

    The program is funded in part by the United Way of the Midlands and reflects both agencies’ efforts to create sustainable community solutions through collaboration.