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In picture from left to right, Michelle McArdle, Laura Snyder, Stephanie Romine, Erika Giese, Michelle Musselman, Krista Leffers and Jennifer Guretis My name is Dian Curtis and I am proud to be the Girl Scout Leader for Troop 149. My girls and I have been in Scouting together for the past 6 years. Each girl has been working very hard to get to where she is today, earning the highest honor they can receive at Cadet Level, The Silver Award.

In picture from left to right, Michelle McArdle, Laura Snyder, Stephanie Romine, Erika Giese, Michelle Musselman, Krista Leffers and Jennifer Guretis on completing The Silver Award. I am proud of each and every one of these girls. They have worked very hard over the last 2 1/2 years to accomplish the Silver Award and it was a huge success.

You have four steps to accomplish before you can begin working on the Silver Award Project. Troop 149 spent the first two years as Cadets working on badges and community service to get the four steps done. The last step of the Silver Award consisted of planning and carrying out a community project that would total 30 hours time for each girl.

For their projects the girls decided they wanted to share with other kids what they have learned on outdoor life through the years of Scouting. Our troop has always enjoyed camping, hiking, making shelters, tying knots and cooking over an open fire. They chose to work with Big Brothers Big Sisters to invite kids who may not have the opportunity to go camping and learn about the outdoors. 30 kids came to camp to spend the day with us and learned outdoor skills.

We did the project at Camp McMillen, north of Fort Wayne, where we spent a lot of time camping ourselves. The girls spent months of planning for this one day. They decided they would set up six different stations throughout the camp where they could teach outdoor skills. For each station they made signs, gathered materials and set up before our day could even begin.

Each one of the Girl Scouts had a group that they were responsible for. They took them around to each station and worked with them teaching them the skills that they have learned over the years. At the end of the day we played games, sang songs, took hayrides, had dinner and S'mores over a fire. When it was time for the bus to take the kids home we walked them through the woods talking about the day, laughing and wishing there was more time.

This day would not have been possible had it not been for parents, Karen Leffers, Kathy Somers, Mimi Snyder, Marilyn Romine and Wendy Musselman, that volunteered not only for that day but for the months of planning with the girls. The day ran smoothly thanks to all the wonderful volunteers we had help us that day. We would also like to thank National City Bank, Bishop Luers, AEP, NIPSCO, Hobby Lobby, Halls Catering, Hilger's Farm Market and Mannie's Place for all the donations that helped make this day possible.

The girls still talk about the day, look at the pictures and remember each kid with a smile. As a parent and a leader I have never been so proud of the girls as I was on that day. I watched young ladies demonstrate leadership qualities that were required for The Silver Award, but beyond that, care, concern and patience for each kid that was there; these are qualities that make them all "special". Congratulations Girls You Did It!


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