The Girls Scouts of the United States of America are celebrating their 100th anniversary this week, and that has gotten some local women thinking about their days in the Scouts.
Havre City Councilwoman Bonnie Parenteau recalls the fun she had as a Girl Scout all through elementary and high school.
It was a time when the Girl Scouts were changing, She recalls as a youngster one her fellow Scouts quit because the troop was involved in domestic pursuits, and she wanted to go camping like the Boy Scouts.
But later on, she said, the girls had a lot of fun camping.
For as long as she was in Scouting in the 1970s, she recalls, girls wore skirts. Eventually, many switched to pantsuits.
Mostly, she recalls learning to work as a team and having fun at it.
They made frequent trips to Canada, even in the day when many roads north of the border were not paved. They had joint projects with the Girl Guides, the Canadian version of the Girl Scouts.
Bake sales were held to raise funds for good projects, and the annual Girl Scout cookie sales were fun and profitable.
"But they used to have just four kinds of cookies, not as many as today," she said.
While they were in high school, the Havre area Scouts took a weeklong summer trip to Tioga, N.D., where they were at a house that worked with young people with disadvantaged backgrounds.
It was a valuable experience, she said.
"We didn't get much sleep, we stayed up most of the night," she said. "Maybe you better not put that in," she said laughing, "My mother might read this."
Ashley Wimmer-Barsness responded to a Havre Daily News Facebook request for Girl Scout recollections.
She recalls having "many fantastic memories from being in the Girl Scouts."
Her mother was a Scout leader "which made it tougher but also a whole lot more enjoyable!"
One of her most enjoyable episodes was what she called "our epic cookie debacle."
"Our troop leaders had placed the orders for the cookies as they did every year, but somehow we managed to get dozens of extra boxes delivered. Living in Malta, a very small town and (having) sold to nearly everyone, we didn't know what we were going to do! We couldn't send them back, as we had gotten them quite later than anticipated and we had already set up multiple booths throughout the cookie selling weeks.
"So what did our little ingenious minds do? We set up a pizza party/barbeque with music from girls parents and food provided from our local store's donations and friends and family?" wrote Wimmer-Barsness
"The admittance... buying three boxes of cookies for adults and two for children. Needless to say all the boxes got sold and we got to pick much better prizes from our booklet that is sent out every year based on your cookie sales, so what could of been a complete disaster turned into one of the most memorable times of my girl scouting experience."