It may be the height of winter for most of the country, but that doesn’t mean we should despair. A most wonderful time of the year has arrived: Girl Scout cookies are officially back on sale, meaning you can once again stop by your local grocery store to stock up on boxes of your favorite flavors.
This is the 101st year that the Girl Scouts have selling its iconic treats to an adoring public. A troop in Oklahoma started this storied tradition by baking cookies and selling them out of a high school cafeteria in Muskogee. Florence E. Neil came up with the original recipe for Girl Scout cookies five years later, which was printed in a 1922 issue of The American Girl magazine. By 1933 the Girl Scouts were selling baked goods in gas stations and even at electric companies. In 1951, the Girl Scouts began selling Chocolate Mints, what we now know as—the fan favorite—Thin Mints. Around the same time, Girl Scouts cookie kiosks started popping up at shopping malls. Not quite the wide-ranging and complex distribution operation we’re familiar with today, but an impressive start nonetheless.
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This year, the Girl Scouts will also be bringing back the S’Mores cookie—of which there are two versions: One is dipped in chocolate, while the other is graham cracker cookie sandwich.
Yes, Girl Scout cookies are one of our few national obsessions that almost everyone can agree on (the only argument is which flavor is the best—the answer, of course, being Samoas), but it’s also worth remembering that when you buy Girl Scout cookies you aren’t just going home to hoard a treasure trove of Thin Mints to eat when no one is home, you’re actually supporting a good cause. One-hundred percent of the revenue from cookie sales benefit the local Girl Scout council where you buy your boxes.