A sweet sale: Girl Scouts raise corn to fund trip
By Kris Leonhardt
MARSHFIELD — Though Girl Scouts are known for their annual cookie fundraiser, a local troop is changing things. The sales tactics may remain the same, but Girl Scout Troop 6181 will be offering an entirely different product: sweet corn.
“One of the girls’ parents, Steve Kloos, suggested this idea a year ago and offered us an acre of land between Rozellville and Marshfield near his office,” explained troop co-leader Diane Hellmann-Sainterme. “He also has assisted the girls with planting, fertilizing, and fencing.”
With that, the girls began raising and caring for their own crop of corn. The experience came with many of the ups and downs that a farmer might experience and taught the girls what is needed to grow a successful crop.
“The first year, none of the girls had any experience with planting on this large of a scale,” said Hellmann-Sainterme. “It was quite a learning experience from calculating the amount of seed needed in the planter boxes, to fertilizing by hand, to building fence to keep out the raccoons, finding out the fence didn’t stop the raccoons and getting a stronger fence, dealing with raccoon damage, learning how to tell when the corn is ready, checking for worms, picking and sorting and selling.
“This year we have experimented with some different types of seed, some more worm-resistant varieties. We were hit hard by worms late in the season last year and lost a lot of good corn, so this year we are hoping to get more sellable corn.”
Proceeds from the sales of sweet corn will be used to fund a group trip to Europe or Central America in the summer of 2018. All leftover corn will be donated to local shelters and care institutions.
The sale is not just monetarily rewarding for the girls but also provides a learning experience as well as a sense of satisfaction.
“It was cool having something that you planted grow,” said scout Emma Tarter.
Girl Scout Troop 6181 will begin selling sweet corn in the Marshfield Culver’s parking lot this coming week.