Thursday, May 21, 2015

Clairemont Girl Scout Helps Make Operation Thin Mint a Success

Laura Lehmann
Twelve-year-old Clairemont Girl Scout Laura Lehmann was among top cookie sellers honored aboard the USS Midway Museum during Girl Scouts San Diego’s 14th annual Operation Thin Mint® (OTM) Sendoff on May 2. Event highlights included live music, helicopter action, a rifle drill team, and an all-woman color guard representing the U.S. Air Force, Army, Marine Corps and Navy.

The Sendoff showcases Girl Scouts San Diego’s OTM program, through which generous cookie customers “send a taste of home and a note to show we care” to deployed service men and women. This year, San Diegans celebrated sending the 2.5 millionth box of cookies to U.S. military troops. Wells Fargo, Cox Communications, SDG&E, KPBS and KSON were Four Star sponsors. The USS Midway Museum provided key support.

Laura — a Girl Scout Cadette from Troop 3866 — was among the 20 top cookie sellers in the region who sold 2,015 or more boxes in 2015 (Laura sold 2,036). The girls arrived and departed the Sendoff by helicopter. All cookie proceeds stay local to fund troop activities, community service projects and other leadership experiences, like Girl Scout camp and career development workshops.

The Sendoff festivities began on the flight deck, which featured vintage aircraft displays, Uncle Sam on stilts and canine ambassadors for Freedom Dogs, a nonprofit organization serving wounded warriors. Military personnel from all branches took the stage for a ceremony emceed by KSON DJs John and Tammy. Spectators enjoyed performances by the Faultlines band featuring The Voice contestant Ashley Morgan, and the San Diego High School JROTC drill team.

Attendees had the opportunity to personally thank members of the armed forces for serving their country — and to write notes of support for deployed troops receiving cookies through OTM.  Participants also donated nonperishable groceries to The Jacobs & Cushman San Diego Food Bank, which held a food drive that morning.

OTM Sendoff guests included Girl Scouts taking part in a sleepover aboard the historic ship, which recently marked its 70th anniversary. Girls bunked below deck to get a taste of Navy life. While exploring the world-class carrier, they learned about the nearly all-women crew who built the ship.

About Girl Scouts: Founded in 1912, Girl Scouts of the USA is the nation’s premier leadership development experience for girls, helping girls discover themselves, connect with others, and take action to make the world a better place. Girl Scouts San Diego provides activities for nearly 40,000 girls and adult members, trains volunteers, and maintains two camps near Julian and program/service facilities in Balboa Park, Carlsbad and Escondido.
To learn about Girl Scouting opportunities for girls in grades K-12 and adult volunteers, visit www.sdgirlscouts.org, or contact Diana Alva, dalva@sdgirlscouts.org, or (619) 610-0708.

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