The Girl Scouts of the USA will be holding their Kick-Off Ceremony at the Appalachian Trail Conservancy (ATC)’s headquarters and visitor center in Harpers Ferry, West Virginia on March 11, 2012, to launch their seven-month effort to hike the Appalachian Trail. As part of their 100-year celebration of Girl Scouting in the United States, Girl Scouts from all over the country plan to hike the A.T. in sections, starting on March 12, 2012 (the anniversary of the first Girl Scout meeting) to October 31, 2012 (Girl Scout USA founder, Juliette Gordon Low's, birthday). The goal is to have every section of the A.T., from Maine to Georgia, hiked by Girl Scouts “in bits and pieces.”
The Kick-Off Ceremony will begin at 11:30a.m. outside the ATC’s headquarters and visitor center. In case of inclement weather, the ceremony will be held at Curtis Freewill Baptist Church, half a block away on Storer College Place.
Three Girl Scout Troops from across Virginia will be hiking into Harpers Ferry to be a part of the ceremony. The ceremony will include speakers from the Girl Scouts, the ATC, and the National Park Service. The event is open to the public.
Angie Sheldon, Education and Outreach Coordinator of the ATC, stated, “The Appalachian Trail Conservancy is so excited with the amount of interest the Girl Scouts have in getting out and enjoying the Appalachian Trail. It’s important, now more than ever, to encourage the youth to connect with their natural environment. What better place for them to have an adventure celebrating their anniversary, than along the Appalachian Trail!"
The Great Girl Scout Hike’s Honorary Chair, Mary “Mama Boots” Sands, inspired this celebratory hike. As a Girl Scout Leader in Kentucky (Girl Scouts of Kentuckiana), she began hiking and backpacking the A.T. in the early 1970s. Over the course of nearly 20 years, accompanied by groups of current and past Girl Scouts, she eventually section hiked the estimated 2,180 miles of the A.T.
Event: Great Girl Scout Appalachian Trail Hike Kick-Off Ceremony
Date: Sunday, March 11, 2012
Time: 11:30 a.m.
Location: Appalachian Trail Conservancy’s Headquarters and Visitor Center
799 Washington St., Harpers Ferry, West Virginia 25425
To learn more about this event or to get involved, visit www.gshike.org.