Cousins set up museum for Girl Scouting

The girls worked on the project to earn their Gold Award, the highest available to Girl Scouts.
WEATHERSFIELD -- Heather Rogers and Alexis Buckner are sharing their love of Girl Scouting with the community.
The 16-year-old cousins earned their Gold Award by creating "Memories 'N Moments of Girl Scouting," a museum at the Girl Scouts of Lake to River Council office on Warren Avenue.
"We had a little bit of money from our great-grandmother, and we just decided to do something to allow the community to learn about Girl Scouting," said Heather, of McDonald, a sophomore taking classes on the Internet through the Electronic Classroom of Tomorrow.
Putting it together: The girls, who joined Scouting 12 years ago, burrowed through boxes of old Girl Scout artifacts and magazines at the council office.
How long did they work on the project? "For about three years," they answered in unison.
The final touches, such as labeling badges according to year and accomplishment, called for some late nights.
"We'd call each other and say, 'OK, when do you want to plan a sleepover?' " said Alexis, of Vienna, a sophomore at Mathews High School.
The result is nine display cases, a bookcase, two display cabinets and four walls full of Girl Scout history and memorabilia.
Visitors may learn about Juliette Low, who founded the Girl Scouts in 1912; read newspaper articles about the early days of Scouting; and try on hats from different phases of the uniform's evolution.
Sources: The girls got some of the items from eBay, the online auction site. Others were donated, but most came from boxes in the bowels of the council office.
The museum is open daily. Guided tours may be arranged by calling the office at (330) 652-5877.
Details: One of the tidbits the cousins picked up in their research was about uniform color.
"All of the uniforms used to be green and khaki, but during World War II, they had to change the color because they looked too much like military uniforms," Heather said. "Now, they're going back to khaki."
"The next uniforms that come out will be khaki," Alexis added. "And they look really good."
The award: The Gold Award is the highest honor available to Girl Scouts.
"Less than 2 percent of Girl Scouts nationally earn a Gold Award," said Susan Paczak, a spokeswoman for the local council. "It's very prestigious."
Heather and Alexis also completed Scout leadership training to earn the awards.
Girl Scouting runs in their family.
Both of their mothers were Girl Scouts, and Alexis' older and younger sisters are involved.
Their grandmother, Marquitta Misciskia of Liberty, worked at the council office for 20 years, most recently as membership coordinator. She retired in January.
"And my mother was a leader," Misciskia said.

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