Building girls of courage, confidence, and character who make the world a better place

As reported in The Citizen in Auburn, NY:

Photo courtesy of The Citizen

The whirling aroma of baked pie crust engulfed a sun-lit kitchen on Jericho Road early Sunday afternoon.

Crimson-red cherry filling, cinnamon-glazed Granny Smith apples and glistening peaches were perfectly cupped inside rolled-out pie dough in preparation for their decorative finish.

A half dozen Girl Scouts ranging in age from 9 to 13 cluttered the kitchen, beaming with excitement and laughter over their annual Thanksgiving activity. Two Girl Scout troops and their troop leaders gathered to help those in need and lend a hand to a local cause that they said means so much to them.

“These girls are our future and events like this really empower them,” troop leader Eleanor Hunter said. “I am very proud of them all because of what they’re doing today. It’s really just in their nature to help others.”

Weedsport Girl Scout Troop 41028 and 40214 came together to bake pies for the Brutus-Sennett Food Pantry in preparation for their Thanksgiving basket distribution. Each year, more than 70 needy families look to the pantry to collect a turkey along with all the trimmings to create their own Thanksgiving. And for the last few years, their baskets were brimming with all the fixings, including a homemade pie for dessert.

Each Girl Scout took on their own role to get the job done. Some rolled out dough, others whisked meringue and stirred pudding. The baking and pie-cutting lasted all afternoon and amid all their hard work there was no complaining, no taste-testing and no whining – just a group of girls giggling with excitement over their baked accomplishments.

An assortment of flavors from berry to pudding pies were on both troops’ to-do lists, and each Girl Scout willingly worked all afternoon to prepare more than 50 pies for those less fortunate, they said.

“We’re here today because it’s important to help people who really need it,” Abbey Grady said. “We’re all so fortunate, and this is our way of giving back to our community.”

The activity carried on through Monday at the pantry, when a few of the Scouts stepped up to do their part to show support to families in their community.

Scout leader Jennie Stearns, who has coordinated the pie-making effort for the last few years, said it’s always so rewarding and humbling to see the girls help out at the drop of a hat.

“There is a need within our community, and to see these girls so excited to participate is such a great feeling,” Stearns said. “We’re just so proud of them and all their efforts.”

Lizzie Jones stood alongside troop leader Eleanor Hunter on Monday night in a room full of families and reflected on the feeling of making someone smile just by their donation and efforts.

Lizzie welcomed each person who came her way, reciting a list of pie flavors, from banana cream to pumpkin pie. As the young 11-year-old stood in line to offer up her troop’s act of kindness to perfect strangers, she beamed with hope and pride to do something that she said means so much to people who really need it.

“It feels so good to see people smile and say ‘thank you,'” Lizzie said. “And it’s hard. It’s hard to see people who are struggling, but it makes me happy to see that we’re all making a difference by what we’re doing.”

Just then, Lizzie was greeted by another customer. She instantly turned, said hello and helped the young woman and her daughter choose a pie for Thanksgiving dinner. As the family was packing up to head home, Lizzie flashed a smile just before sending off her own farewell.

“Enjoy” she called out. “And have a happy Thanksgiving.”

Are you doing community service projects to help out those less fortunate this holiday season? Let us know about it! E-mail kdunne@gsnypenn.org.

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