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The Cookies Are Coming!

The Girl Scouts celebrate 100 years, and unleash a new foray of fundraising edibles.

Okay, so the long splurge that began with Thanksgiving and ended on New Year’s Day is finally over. But don’t reach for those diet books just yet – a tsunami of Girl Scout cookies will be heading your way when the organization’s annual cookie sales program starts on January 19.

The Girls Scouts of Southeast Florida, which claims 14,000 members in counties from Broward to Indian River, will also be participating for the fourth year in the Cookies for the Military program, which gives Floridians an opportunity to donate cases of cookies to America’s servicemen and women. Consumers can make a donation at any cookie booth or by visiting www.gssef.org.

Girl Scout cookies first became a national obsession 90 years ago, when, in the July 1922 issue of The American Girl, Chicago Girl Scout leader Florence Neil described how her girls had been baking cookies to raise much-needed funds. In the early years, the Scouts baked the cookies themselves, but by the mid-1930s the operation had grown so vast that it was turned over to commercial bakeries. Except for a brief period during World War II, when food rationing limited the availability of ingredients, the cookies have been sold ever since, currently raising more than $700 million a year. It is, say the Scouts, the largest girl-run business on the planet.

Read the entire article in the January 2012 issue