I started volunteering with Girl Scouts when Big Al was in 2nd grade (8 years ago). Since then I've always been a leader for 1 or 2 troops. Five years ago I took Big Al, T-Rex and a few others to DC to celebrate 95 years of girl scouts. This year (100 years) I brought Blondie and Cheesie and their brownie/junior troop. This happened back on June 8,9, and 10th. Yes, I'm late, but had to get this posted because vacation posts will be coming soon.
The first adventure on the trip was to actually STOP at South of the Border. A thoroughly tacky little destination off of I-95 on the SC side of the SC/NC boarder. We've always driven by, but had to stop because I had forgotten something. The girls thought it was cool, but weird (which it absolutely is) but it was a fun pitstop.
The second adventure was to stop (three times going up) to find letterboxes (go to letterboxing.org if you don't know what that is). The girls were excited because the other three girls hadn't done it before, and we were lucky enough to find 2 out of 3 of them. At a previous meeting we had carved our own stamps, so the girls were excited to find handcarved stamps instead of store bought.
We stayed at a campground south of DC called Pohick Bay recreational park and it was perfect. The main campground was nice, but they had another one near it for kids. We camped next to boy scouts having a jamboree, and a Spanish speaking soccer camp (those boys were playing soccer at 6 a.m.). The girls were thrilled because most of them hadn't gone tent camping before, and the first order of business was to set up the tents, start that fire, and begin cooking our own hotdogs and smores.
The next morning we got up and drove to the metro station. Now 5 years ago DC was packed for the 95th, but this one was WAY BIGGER. Imagine DC on a Saturday in the summer with the regular tourists, and then about 200,000 girl scouts on top of it. The metro (above) was super packed (even more than rush hour) and we were all so worried about splitting up our girls. Thankfully with everyone so child centered (everyone was pretty much a girl scout) it went fairly smoothly and politely.
Now my younger two have of course been to DC many times to visit family and we do a couple things each time we go (no hurrying around, just pop in and pop out). The other 3 had never been though, so we started with the White House.
From there we walked over to the Washington Monument area, and sat with a huge sea of people watching the Girl Scout concert of the big screens. The girls started handing out our swaps, and quickly realized that we should have made hundreds. Blondie's hat was covered pretty quickly, and I think the girls burned out pretty quickly with the idea of them. It wasn't as hot outside as other years, but when you're sitting in a field without any shade you heat up quick. The girls ate the lunch we brought, listened for a bit, and then we moved on to the American History museum.
After that one, we went to the Natural History museum. Above, the girls are watching a woman try to work together some of the dinosaur bones. The girls were pretty impressed with the displays of the dinosaurs, and the mummies.
A few of them were willing to hold the weird insects on display upstairs (yay Blondie). I had to help her hold that giant grasshopper because she needed two hands, and lefty just wasn't going to cut it for that poor insect.
We walked out of the museum and the girls were pooped. So we waited in line to even go down into the metro, and then headed back to camp, where the girls made nachos and tacos on the camp stove.
They did a fabulous job of taking over all of the responsibilities and I was very proud of them. They spent the evening playing card games, and hanging out. They were in bed pretty early and we headed back the next day. It was a short trip, but they got to see thousands of girls who share their enjoyment of scouts.