One hundred thirteen Girl Scouts and troop leaders from southwestern Minnesota visited Juliette Gordon Low’s birthplace in Savannah, GA in June. Girl Scouts from New Ulm, Fairmont, Redwood Falls, Belview and Gaylord participated in the 12-day trip, after planning, raising money, learning about travel and discussing potential activities for three years. Troop leader Joan Krikava organized the trip with help from troop leaders from the New Ulm Service Unit.
Traveling by motor coach, the group traveled from New Ulm, MN to southeastern United States, visiting historic and natural sites along the way. They visited the Herbert Hoover Presidential Library and Museum, Kentucky Horse Park, historic Shaker Village, Great Smoky Mountains National Park, Mammoth Cave National Park, Lincoln’s Birthplace National Monument and the Louisville Slugger Museum & Factory. In addition, the group experienced some very memorable trip highlights.
One highlight was overnight camping on an aircraft carrier, the USS Yorktown, in Charleston, SC. The Girl Scouts experienced World War II history and gained an understanding of military service by sleeping in bunks, eating meals in the mess hall and exploring the ship and planes. The girls were thrilled to hear that Girl Scouts played an important role in World War II by supporting the troops, recycling essential materials, caring for injured soldiers and planting victory gardens.
Visiting Juliette Gordon Low’s birthplace was another trip highlight for the Girl Scouts. They participated in a special Interest session about the history of Girl Scouting, explored Savannah and found information about Juliette Gordon Low throughout the city.
For many in the group, swimming in the Atlantic Ocean was also a trip highlight. The girls spent a day at the ocean and saw dolphins, pelicans and other wildlife. They explored the shore with a naturalist, spent an overnight at the Georgia Aquarium and learned about tidal ecology, environmental protection and care of ocean mammals.
This trip was the culmination of three years of planning for the group. It helped them learn cooperation, leadership and self reliance. By accomplishing their goal of planning and taking the trip, the Girl Scouts learned that they can successfully carry out a major project.