We are excited about all that this campaign is making possible for our girls – capital improvements at our three camp properties; continuation and expansion of current programming as well as innovative new programming; scholarship assistance so that every girl has access to the Girl Scout leadership experience; and a significant investment in our endowment ensuring that Girl Scouts of Eastern Missouri will be serving girls in our region for generations to come! Thank you to everyone who has supported this campaign with time, talent and treasure! We are forever grateful for your investment.
Berges Family Creation and Imagination Station – Project Update
Since last May when the groundbreaking for the Berges Family Creation and Imagination Station took place, Girl Scouts of Eastern Missouri has been working to complete the permitting phase for the project. The work to secure permits for this exciting new STEM center involves two different jurisdictions, Franklin County, and the United States Army Corp of Engineers (USACE).
Authorization from the USACE is needed because the site of the Berges Family Creation and Imagination Station falls under their jurisdiction. USACE protects waterways and streambanks and cultural resources. Several studies including an archaeological survey to identify any cultural resources are being conducted. It is anticipated the studies and survey will be completed in January and then dirt will start moving at the STEM center site.
A state-of-the-art construction camera has been installed at Camp Fiddlecreek so GSEM members and the community can watch the Berges Family Creation and Imagination Station construction in real-time and check in on progress throughout the building phase on the project. A link to the live feed will be available on the GSEM website and an announcement will be made once construction has begun and the camera is live.
A Day for Good with Spire
GSEM is proud to recognize Spire for their ongoing support of Camps Cedarledge and Fiddlecreek through the Her Future is Our Future Campaign and their Day for Good program.
A Day for Good allows a Spire employee to receive paid time off to volunteer for a not for profit of their choice. Beginning in fall of 2022, Spire employees have contributed one day a month to working on projects with the camp property staff, clearing brush and unwanted vegetation on the trails at Camps Cedarledge and Fiddlecreek. Spire’s most recent Day for Good at Camp Cedarledge provided the person power and equipment needed to help with clean up from a storm that came through camp last August. This storm caused downed trees and a power outage that delayed the opening of the last week of overnight camp by several days.
While the camp property team worked hard to get the camp program areas cleared there was still much left to do behind the scenes and around the Camp Office and Maintenance Building. The Spire crew brought with them the necessary equipment to saw downed trees into logs for campfires and move vegetation and remaining storm debris. Work like this takes time, equipment, and muscle and GSEM is grateful to Spire for their continued partnership.
In late September donors supporting the Prairie project at Camp Fiddlecreek were invited to join Malinda Walters of Compass Native Landscapes, our Prairie horticulturist, out at camp to check on the progress of the Prairie. Malinda led the group on a walk through the Prairie, where the seeds of seven varieties of grasses and 29 Forbs (flowers) were planted last January. A few of the flowers and grass currently blooming are Black eyed Susan, Coreopsis and Witch Grass. The morning also included a visit to a special section of the Prairie, called Girl Scouts Grow, where seeds selected by each Girl Scout age level were planted in honor of our membership.
The seeds planted last January in Girl Scouts Grow are:
Forest Health at Camp Fiddlecreek
Two years ago, as a result of the Her Future is Our Future Campaign, GSEM began working with the Missouri Department of Conservation to address the health of the forest at Camp Fiddlecreek. Through this partnership, we are working to thin the small cedars that are making it difficult for the oak and hickory to grow, and managing the removal and eradication of the invasive species, honeysuckle and autumn olive that has taken over portions of the camp. The map shows 5 areas of focus, 44 acres in total. Areas 1, 2 and 5 is where the small cedars will be thinned, and the removal of invasive species, particularly bush honeysuckle, will be done in areas 3 and 4.
GSEM thanks the Missouri Department of Conservation and their Habitat Specialist Crew for their ongoing efforts to keep this project moving and training our camp staff on how to incorporate these forest and land management practices at Camp Fiddlecreek.
Claire Bear Camp
This summer, Girl Scouts of Eastern Missouri was proud to offer the inaugural Claire Bear Camp, a week-long day camp for Girl Scouts ages 5-18 on the autism spectrum. With her support of the Her Future is Our Future Comprehensive Campaign, Cynthia Heath, former GSEM board chair, generously made Claire Bear Camp possible, affectionately named after her great niece, Claire.
Claire Bear Camp gave eight campers the opportunity to experience a week of new friends, outdoor adventure, and a sense of belonging in an inclusive and nurturing environment. Claire Bear Camp was held at Camp Fiddlecreek in Myrtle’s Manor; a site designed to be safe and accessible for campers. Campers had the opportunity to experience daily morning and afternoon round-up at the flagpole with Girl Scout pledges and songs; progressive skill learning through camp tasks, cooking and making snacks, and leadership actvities; and “challenge-by-choice” through adventure recreation like slingshots, hiking, swimming and playing on the new play structures, along with fun traditional camp crafts and games. A highlight of the week was a family day on the final Friday of camp, where campers’ family members/caregivers had the opportunity to experience many activities alongside their campers.
Claire Bear Camp also focused on developing new community partnerships to create and sustain future Girl Scout camp opportunities for girls with other diagnoses and medical conditions. In preparation for this summer, Girl Scouts of Eastern Missouri staff worked closely with a diverse group of supporters to develop this unique and modified camp, ensuring campers individual needs would be met. GSEM wants to extend a special thank you to the following volunteers, advisors, and staff whose hard work and expertise helped make Claire Bear Camp possible: Melissa Niedermann, Shayle Wigger, Darcy McCown, Sarah Hurst, Heather Schrick, Kristi Gianino, Jennifer Shaw, Sharolyn Crum, Byron Thurmond, and Aundreya Ottens.
Our members say it best: “Claire Bear Camp was beyond incredible for my Girl Scout, and I don’t know if I will ever be able to express my gratitude to everyone involved and to Cynthia Heath.” - 3rd grade camper caregiver
Edward Jones Adventure Center
Starting later this summer installation of additional play structures at Camp Tuckaho will be underway. Thanks to Edward Jones’ generous support of the Her Future is Our Future Campaign, the new Edward Jones Adventure Center will be constructed in the field behind the Camp Maintenance Office. This will include several play experiences and shade structures that will be connected by a pathway. We are excited to offer these new play structures at all three camps and are grateful for the support of partners like Edward Jones who are making this possible. Target completion date is late fall.
Trails at Camp Cedarledge
This month we are excited to announce trail renovations at Camp Cedarledge, funded by the Her Future is Our Future campaign, were completed in June.
Hiking and exploring the natural world are key components of Girl Scouting’s outdoor programs. The wooded hills, rocky ledges and open valleys that make up Camp Cedarledge give campers experiences of a lifetime.
A top priority of the Cedarledge trail renovation was to identify a location where campers of various abilities could experience a hike through the woods, and along the creek taking in the natural beauty of Camp Cedarledge. After much exploration an area near the permanent tent unit Kiamecia was identified as the perfect spot. A wide, trail bed of crushed limestone was laid making it possible for hikers to walk or travel with a walker or wheelchair. GSEM is grateful to the Jefferson Foundation for their support in making this trail possible.
Another goal of the renovation work was to clear the trails selected for renovation of debris and vegetation and to correct drainage, navigation issues and better manage erosion. Removal of rock along some trail beds was crushed to make navigation smoother, enhancing trail navigation.
A new trail off a little travelled area off Frontier Trail on Pioneer Mountain new trail was laid. The new trail winds through a very scenic and rocky portion of camp off Frontier Trail. Also within this area are rock formations and an overhang that will provide additional adventure activities for Girl Scouts.
An area at the beginning of Green Cathedral was moved to make navigation smoother and less strenuous.
With the completion of the trails at Cedarledge only Tuckaho trails remain. Plans are for those trails to be done within the next year. Watch for announcements in upcoming issue of the e-newsletter.
New Play Structures at Camp Cedarledge
As part of the Her Future is Our Future Campaign, new play structures were installed at all three camps. Camp Cedarledge recently received two new play structures located outside the dining hall, including a boulder climbing structure and an Akadinda, a percussion play musical instrument.
Both structures are for campers of all ages and offer a variety of experiences for campers while having free time in the outdoors. These two play structures join the two already installed at Camp Fiddlecreek. Since their introduction, members have shared positive feedback about how much they enjoy the opportunity to have free play with their friends. GSEM is grateful to the Dana Brown Charitable Trust for making these new structures at Camp Cedarledge possible.
Uniform Assistance Fund
For more than a century, Girl Scouts have proudly worn distinctive uniforms that symbolize the high ideals for which the organization stands. To further support families in need, Girl Scouts of Eastern Missouri is proud to offer a Uniform Assistance Fund to all eligible Girl Scouts to purchase age-appropriate uniform pieces, including the sash (or tunic for our Daisy Girl Scouts), troop numerals, our Girl Scout Council identification set and an American Flag patch, due to support provided from the Her Future is Our Future Comprehensive Campaign. All uniform assistance fund recipients will also receive complimentary heat press services to ensure the uniform will have the insignia appropriately placed and be ready to wear right away. By removing financial barriers for uniform pieces, all eastern Missouri Girl Scouts can develop essential leadership life skills while showing off their Girl Scout pride and feeling their best!
Dogpatch Has a New Home!
Dogpatch, the popular primitive hammock unit at Camp Fiddlecreek, has a new home, made possible by the Her Future is Our Future Comprehensive Campaign. The unit was recently moved from the location along the creek in the woods along the west side of the lake where it’s been for many years to across the road from Myrtle’s Manor behind Monk’s Bathtub. Nestled in the woods, Dogpatch will accommodate 12 hammocks for Girl Scouts who like to sleep outdoors under the stars and be swayed to sleep.
The site that was Dogpatch will be called the Old Dogpatch Shelter. During the construction of the STEM Center, it will be used as a storage area for equipment and materials. Once the center is completed the shelter will become available for troops to reserve for a Day Outing.
STEM Center Groundbreaking
On May 25, Girl Scouts of Eastern Missouri officially broke ground on The Berges Family Creation and Imagination Station, located at Camp Fiddlecreek in Labadie, Missouri. This project is being made possible by the Berges Family Foundation and their support of the Her Future is Our Future Comprehensive Campaign.
The Berges Family Creation and Imagination Station will offer a vast array of Girl Scout program opportunities led by staff and expert community partners with backgrounds in science, technology, engineering, math, and the outdoors. It will also serve as a gathering place for members, volunteers, and community partners to come together. Some features of the new building will include a science lab, digital maker space, kitchen, outdoor classrooms, a large outdoor deck, and a podcast broadcast room.
Congratulations to Girl Scout Brownie, Mabrey M., whose submission inspired the final name for this special new structure.
Thank you to the Berges Family Foundation for their unwavering support of girl leadership development in eastern Missouri. Their generosity will ensure that girls across our region can continue to discover new talents, interests, and future STEM ambitions.
Kitchen Shelters Ready for Summer
Kitchen shelters serve a variety of different and important purposes for campers. The kitchen shelters are like the “family room” of the unit. It’s here where campers check in upon arrival, meals are prepared and served, meetings are held and fun is had. Thanks to the Her Future is Our Future Campaign, four kitchen shelters at Camp Cedarledge were demolished and replaced at Whispering Winds primitive unit, and Ahwenasa, Kiamecia, and Rocky Ledges. The next time you are at Cedarledge be sure and walk by and check them out!
Ameren Rural Troop Start Up
Thanks to generous support from Ameren Missouri through the Her Future is Our Future Campaign, Girl Scouts of Eastern Missouri is continuing to reach girls in rural areas that are historically underrepresented. Ameren Missouri’s three-year commitment (Oct. 2020-Sept. 2023) provided start-up costs to begin a new troop, including staff support and volunteer training, membership fees, uniform pieces and program fees. New troops participate in the Girl Scout Cookie Program and raise funds to support their troop moving forward. In 2022, 519 new Daisy Girl Scouts were placed into 43 troops, each earning badges, engaging in community service, participating in camping programs and growing their leadership skills.
Schwab Volunteer Week Camp Maintenance Efforts
For the second year in a row, Girl Scouts of Eastern Missouri has proudly partnered with Charles Schwab during the annual Schwab Volunteer Week. This volunteer opportunity is the largest engagement program that mobilizes thousands of Charles Schwab employees in service to nonprofits across the country. Adopted as an annual event since 2004, Schwab Volunteer Week celebrates Schwab’s company’s culture of service, pride, and teambuilding – attributes that align seamlessly with the Girl Scout mission and values. This year alone, 60 “Schwabbies” ventured out to Camp Cedarledge and Camp Tuckaho, cutting and clearing brush from the roadways and trailways in preparation for the summer camp season as well as the groundbreakings on various capital projects connected to the Her Future is Our Future Campaign. We are grateful to Charles Schwab for their continued contributions of time, talent, and treasure, making the Girl Scout Leadership Experience unique and powerful for our eastern Missouri girls.
Claire Bear Camp
Girl Scouts of Eastern Missouri is proud to offer Claire Bear Camp, a week-long day camp for Girl Scouts ages 5-18 on the autism spectrum, for the first-time July 31 through August 4, 2023. With her support of the Her Future is Our Future Comprehensive Campaign, Cynthia Heath, former GSEM board chair, has generously made the Claire Bear Camp possible, affectionately named after her great niece, Claire.
Claire Bear Camp was created to give campers the opportunity to experience a week of new friends, outdoor adventure, and a sense of belonging in an inclusive and nurturing environment. Claire Bear Camp will be held at Camp Fiddlecreek in Myrtle’s Manor; a site designed to be safe and accessible for campers. Campers will have the opportunity to experience daily morning and afternoon round-up at the flagpole with Girl Scout pledges and songs; progressive skill learning through camp tasks, cooking, and leadership; and “challenge-by-choice” through adventure recreation and fun with camp crafts and games.
In addition to providing day camp for Girl Scouts on the autism spectrum, Claire Bear Camp will also focus on creating community partnerships to create future Girl Scout camp opportunities for girls with other diagnoses and medical conditions. Specifically in preparation for the summer 2023 Claire Bear Camp, Girl Scouts of Eastern Missouri staff are working closely with a diverse group of supporters to develop this unique and modified camp, ensuring campers individual needs will be met. The planning committee is currently comprised of special education teachers, an occupational therapist, a nurse, behavioral specialists, and parents of girls with autism. These individuals are collaborating with Girls Scouts of Eastern Missouri’s experienced Director of Camping Services, Melissa Niedermann, and Inclusion and Accommodation Specialist, Shayle Wigger (CTRS – a career and nationally certified recreational therapist), to create a typical, yet uniquely modified Girl Scout camp experience full of camp routines and activities. Claire Bear Camp staff and volunteers are being carefully selected, and the planning team will also provide the critical training, so that all campers receive the level of support they individually need to experience a successful, fun week at camp.
Lodges Are Ready For Summer
Lodges at Camps Tuckaho and Cedarledge have all been updated for summer with air conditioning. Air conditioning has been installed at Tuck Hall, Tuck East and West, Carver House, Sacajewa and Boone’s Loft at Tuckaho and Gail’s Place, Bright Star, Luckystone and Petite Chalet at Cedarledge. This improvement will offer girls a place to go and chill out during the heat of the day by relaxing and recharging in the cool comfort of the lodge before they return to their camp activities.
Dining Halls at both camps are also being outfitted with air conditioning this spring just in time for summer.
We know from feedback from our members that this is a welcome and needed addition to our camp facilities.
We are grateful to the Regional Business Council for their support of this project and to all of our donors whose support of the Her Future is Our Future Campaign is making these improvements possible.
It’s Time to Play! Level X Play Structure Comes to Fiddlecreek and is Ready for Camper Use
This February, the Level X play structure was installed at Camp Fiddlecreek and is now available for members to use. Building on the popularity of the Spider Net Climber, this structure is located right down the lane from the Trefoil Inn and Myrtle’s Manor, where Daisy’s Lodge was located. It is appropriate for Daisies through Ambassadors. Just like the Spider Net Climber, it is a free-play experience for girls to enjoy without having a certified adult facilitating the experience or reservations required. Leaders and event staff will want to be sure and have adults present while girls are participating, as with all activities. We are grateful to the Mabee Foundation for their support of this project.
Girl Scouts of Eastern Missouri is committed to providing the Girl Scout Leadership Experience to every girl in our region who wants it, regardless of income, family situation, or specialized therapeutic needs. To help achieve that goal, several Community Troops have been formed in collaboration with youth-serving, crisis-oriented organizations including Gateway 180, Epworth Children & Family Services and Marygrove. In addition to traditional troop programming, members of these “Specialty Troops” benefit from a specifically-curated curriculum that addresses the trauma that each has encountered in their lives and offers strategies and resources for navigating those challenges. This curriculum is led by a dedicated, experienced Community Troop Manager, LaTonya Logan, who has a background and education in the human services field. Support from the Her Future is Our Future Campaign will ensure that these specialty troops have the resources needed to continue providing a fun and impactful troop experience to girls in residential programs throughout the region.
Investment in the Community Troop Program
Girl Scouts of Eastern Missouri is committed to ensuring that every girl who wants to be a Girl Scout has that opportunity—regardless of race, ability, or socioeconomic status. Through support from the Her Future is Our Future Campaign, GSEM is able to sustain and continue to invest in the Community Troop Program (CTP) to better meet the needs of all girls. Launched in 2014, CTP leverages Girl Scout staff members as troop leaders in areas where 75% to 100% of students receive free or reduced-price lunches. In 2022, membership in the CTP program saw a significant increase with more than 3,000 girls in 74 troops who participated, helping them develop the qualities and proficiencies needed to prepare them for success in life. Community Troop members earned 12,000+ badges on topics including Public Speaking, Designing Robots and First Aid.
Improving the Natural Habitat at Camp Fiddlecreek
Not only has the Her Future is Our Future Campaign provided resources to fund council camp projects, provide program and financial support and help build our endowment, it has also introduced new partners to Girl Scouts of Eastern Missouri.
We are grateful to Missouri Department of Conservation (MOC) for their support in assessing the forest at Camp Fiddlecreek. Through their Timber Stand Improvement program, they looked at tree growth, overgrown and crowded areas that impact future growth and health of the forest to create a plan to improve the forest over time. Areas overgrown with invasive species such as bush honeysuckle, Autumn Olive and multiflora rose were identified and are now being treated and managed. GSEM receives support through programs offered by MDOC. Working in collaboration with the Missouri Department of Conservation is the Habitat Specialist Crew. Their role is to assist with the removal of invasive species such as bush honeysuckle, floribunda roses, and Russian Olive that can be found at Camp Fiddlecreek.
To get a view of the forest at Camp Fiddlecreek, be sure and hike the newly restored trails when visiting camp.
Camp Wayfinding and Signage
Each of Girl Scouts of Eastern Missouri’s camps has an established wayfinding system that is supported with signage that directs visitors to units, program sites and buildings. As part of the Master Plan a comprehensive review of our system was completed to provide information for a future wayfinding and signage program for our camps.
Wayfinding will assist with organization branding and provide visitors with clear direction on vehicular and pedestrian circulation throughout the camp property.
Signage will use the Girl Scouts of the USA brand platform and standards to create a network of signs that will be recognizable by visitors when visiting any one of our camps. There will be several categories of signs ranging from Monument, entrance signs to each camp; Directional, representing a variety of locations at camp units to program site, and Interpretive signs that will provide information about the location, as well as educational information and wayfinding such as trail markers and natural sites. In addition, there will be specific templates for signs ranging from regulatory, speed limit, no parking, etc. and signs for program guidelines and procedures such as Swimming, Canoeing and adventure.
The Wayfinding and Signage program will extend beyond our camps to our Service Center where a special wall will be installed recognizing donors’ support of the Her Future is Our Future comprehensive campaign.
Camp Fiddlecreek will be the first camp to receive new wayfinding and signage later this year. Watch for additional information in upcoming issues of the e-newsletter.
Let’s Welcome Our New Accommodation Specialist
We are excited to welcome Shayle Wigger, GSEM’s Inclusion and Accommodation Specialist! As a member of the Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion team, Shayle supports disability inclusion at GSEM, working with staff and caregivers to foster a more inclusive environment for Girl Scouts living with disabilities. This new role, made possible through support of the Her Future is Our Future campaign, will manage disability-related accommodations and serves as a subject matter expert for youth-centered accessibility, advising and training team members on how to best support girls of all abilities. As Inclusion and Accommodations Specialist, Shayle will play a key role in designing Claire Bear Camp, GSEM’s first ever camp designed for Girl Scouts on the autism spectrum.
Coming This Spring to Camp Fiddlecreek – Free Play Structure
The photo above shows a rendering of the play experience structure coming soon to Camp Fiddlecreek. It will be located across the road from Trefoil Inn, previously the site of Daisy’s Lodge. This play experience will provide campers of all ages with an additional space to enjoy, play and have fun on their own while being at camp. Campers will excite in the challenges and adventure they will experience on this new structure. This play structure is scheduled to arrive in spring 2023. Stay tuned for updates in future editions of the e-newsletter.
Scholarships for All Girls
Girl Scouts believe in removing barriers to opportunity and making the world a better, fairer, more equitable place. That’s why Girl Scouts of Eastern Missouri is proud to offer increased financial aid to our members through the Her Future is Our Future Comprehensive Campaign, so that all girls may participate fully in Girl Scout program activities and camp. The generous support of our campaign donors also makes possible the Uniform Assistance Fund which helps all girls look and feel their best, while they develop essential life and leadership skills. To learn more about Girl Scouts of Eastern Missouri’s membership, activity or uniform scholarships, click here.
Air Conditioning at Camp
We are excited to announce that this summer, in time for the opening of summer camp, all of our lodges and dining halls at Cedarledge and Tuckaho will be air-conditioned! We know from requests from our members that having a place for campers to be able to enjoy mealtime in an air-conditioned dining hall, as well as have cool places to gather during the day will enhance our campers experience at camp. This much requested improvement is being made possible by community investment in Girl Scouts through the Her Future is Our Future Campaign. Watch for more information in the upcoming issue of 2023 Camp Adventure Guide to be released December 1, 2022.
Programs that Reach all Girls – Live from Girl Scouts
The Her Future is Our Future campaign is making possible the continuation of accessible programming for Girl Scouts of Eastern Missouri members, like Live from Girl Scouts. This program allows girls from across eastern Missouri to access innovative, badge-earning program opportunities, right from their own homes. Developed during the pandemic, the first season the Live from Girl Scouts was a huge success and since then we have provided more than 10,000 program experiences to our Girl Scouts through three seasons. Season 4 kicked off this October and will offer another 18 badge-earning opportunities with material boxes mailed directly to homes. This program is valued at $30-$35 but thanks to community support girls pay only $10 to participate. These virtual opportunities can be used as a troop meeting for a group, or for families who want to help their Girl Scout explore a new interest or learn a new skill.
Innovative Program Opportunities, Brownie Bundle
The Her Future is Our Future Comprehensive Campaign is making possible the creation and expansion of innovative new program opportunities that will provide Girl Scouts and volunteers with the skills and support needed to encourage skill-building and badge earning opportunities. Based on the success of the Daisy Drop Box program and recommendations from troop leaders, Girl Scouts of Eastern Missouri will roll-out the new Brownie Bundle program in Fall 2023. Like the Daisy Drop Box, each Brownie Bundle will contain all the resources volunteers need to hold successful meetings each month, including step-by-step instructions and activity supplies. Stay tuned for more information coming in spring 2023!
Trail Restoration Project Ribbon Cutting Celebration
On September 19, Girl Scouts of Eastern Missouri and community partner, Spire, cut the ribbon on Camp Fiddlecreek’s Trail Restoration Project, made possible through Spire’s support of the Her Future is Our Future Comprehensive Campaign. To help celebrate the special day, volunteers from Spire performed maintenance on the trail, and will continue to do so as part of their on-going commitment to ensure the sustainability of the trails for girls today and long into the future. As part of the trail restoration project, 12 trail segments have been integrated into the total trail system at Camp Fiddlecreek and will provide Girl Scouts of varying abilities and skill levels the opportunity to experience the outdoors at camp.
STEM Center – Camp Fiddlecreek
The STEM Center at Camp Fiddlecreek is taking shape. Construction is expected to start in early 2023 and the center will sit on the west side of Walker Lake. The STEM Center will give Girl Scouts an immersive STEM experience, including features such as a science lab, digital maker space, and broadcast room for recording podcasts. It will also serve as a gathering place for our Girl Scouts where Program Partners can deliver innovative programs and Robotics teams can meet and practice. The design includes a kitchen to make snacks and meals and even an outdoor classroom. With the Prairie Grass development and Walker Lake a few steps away, outdoor program opportunities will be right outside the door. This STEM Center is one of two centers that will be built over the next several years and is planned to open in 2023. A second STEM Center will be built at Camp Tuckaho.
Ameren Rural Troop Start Up
Thanks to generous support from Ameren Missouri through the Her Future is Our Future Campaign, Girl Scouts of Eastern Missouri is reaching more girls in rural areas. The Troop Start-Up model is simple – Ameren Missouri’s three-year commitment (Oct. 2020-Sept. 2023) provided the costs to begin a new troop, including staff support and volunteer training, membership fees, uniform pieces and program fees. Once formed, these troops have access to all of the resources GSEM offers, including the ability to participate in the Girl Scout Cookie Program and raise funds to support their troop moving forward. In the first two years of the program, Ameren’s generous support has made it possible for 584 girls to start their progressive skill-building journey as new Girl Scouts, with the support of 147 new Girl Scout volunteers. These new troops are already earning badges, engaging in community service, participating in camping programs and growing their leadership skills.
Uniform Assistance Fund
For more than a century, Girl Scouts have proudly worn distinctive uniforms that symbolize the high ideals for which the organization stands. Through the Her Future is Our Future Campaign an established Uniform Assistance Fund removes financial barriers so all girls can develop essential leadership life skills while looking—and feeling their best. The Uniform Assistance Fund makes available age-appropriate uniform pieces to families who need assistance purchasing uniform components such as sashes or tunics, troop numerals, American Flag patch and the council identification set.
Camp Fiddlecreek – Prairie Grass
The development of the Prairie at Camp Fiddlecreek is underway! In July the layout of the prairie outside the Dining Hall Multi-Purpose Building at Camp Fiddlecreek was completed by Compass Native Landscape, the council’s partner on the Prairie Grass Development Project.
Based on recommendations from volunteers, the prairie will include sections and walking paths for programming and nature exploration, and immersion. There will be a 19,000 square-foot section in the middle of the prairie that will allow for a gathering area to be used for traditional events such as flag ceremonies and lunches on the hillside, as well as a sledding lane during winter snows. When visiting Fiddlecreek this summer and fall please take time to visit the site, walk it, experience it and imagine how it will grow and develop.
The first year it sleeps, the second year it creeps and the third year it leaps is the rule of thumb for prairie development.
Camp Cedarledge – Trail System
This summer the first step in the development of the trails at Camp Cedarledge was an assessment of the existing trails. The network of trails at Cedarledge encompasses more than five miles of camp property. There are numerous points of interest, ecological sites and rock formations that are part of the system. The preservation of the unique ecological areas on the trail such as Elephant Rocks and Natural Bridge Trail will be enhanced with informational signs that will help campers learn along the way. Camp Cedarledge provides an opportunity for primitive trails for the more experienced hiker to more developed trails for those new to hiking. Work on this network of trails will begin later this year. Watch for more information and updates through the e-newsletter and social media posts.
Camp Cedarledge and Camp Fiddlecreek – Play Experiences
Our family of free play structures is growing! Building on the success of the Spider Net Climber at Camp Fiddlecreek we are adding two new play structures: one at Camp Fiddlecreek and one at Camp Cedarledge. These play structures will provide another destination where campers can go to have fun and make new friends. They will add a new element to a camper’s outdoor experience. Campers will use their imagination to play on the structures and try new things that they can do independently at their own pace. Both play structures will be available for girls 5-18. Locations for the structures are being finalized and will be announced in next month’s e-newsletter.
Camp Fiddlecreek – Prairie Grass
“The first year it sleeps, the second year it creeps and the third year it leaps!” This is how the development of a prairie is often described.
The two-acre hillside outside the Dining Hall Multipurpose Building at Camp Fiddlecreek is the site of the Prairie Grass Development Project. Preparation of the site for the prairie is beginning this summer. Based on recommendations from a group of volunteers, the prairie will include sections for programming and nature exploration and immersion, walking paths, a lane for sled riding in the winter and a gathering area for events where camp traditions such as flag ceremonies and lunch on the hillside can continue. Over the course of several years this area will come alive with many different native plants.
All Camp Properties – Gates and Security
In the coming months, all three camp main entries will have new gates equipped with video monitoring and keypad entry systems to ensure the security and safety of our Girl Scouts. Above is a rendering of what to expect.
Launch Into Girl Scouts – Pre-K Program
Starting Kindergarten is a big step and thanks to PNC’s support of the Her Future is Our Future Campaign, preschool girls can register for this robust Pre-K program and get a head start on learning as they try new things, make new friends, and go on new adventures, virtually and in-person. Each participant receives packets delivered right to their door throughout the summer that include themed activities. A champion for early childhood education, PNC is helping Girl Scouts develop the next generation of leaders and cultivating entrepreneurship opportunities.
Camp Fiddlecreek – Trail Restoration
The trail restoration project at Camp Fiddlecreek is now complete! Whether climbing the stairs up one of the hills on the Trail of the Rising Sun/Borderline Trail, traversing Ridge Top Trail or exploring Mossy Top, the trails at Fiddlecreek represent the rich history of this camping property. The newly-renovated trails offer girls of all ages a challenging adventure and immersion into the natural beauty of Fiddlecreek. Troops and groups that are registered for camp for the day or weekend can use the trails while on site.
Girls hiking the trail will experience a variety of switchbacks that take them through the woods and help them navigate steep terrain. There are small creek fords, which are rocks placed at low-lying creeks and on wetter portions of the trail that aid with navigation. The new trails also have several log bridges that were added to improve the hiking experience for members.
Signage and wayfinding are another focus of the trail restoration at Camp Fiddlecreek and member input has been an integral part of the process.
Signage will be high-visibility and let users know they are entering a trail, as well as provide information about the trail. Girls will be able to chart their progress by following the mile markers and directional signage. New signage, maps, trail programs and interpretative information will be introduced later this year.
The trail restoration project at Camp Fiddlecreek was made possible by Spire, as part of the Her Future is Our Future Campaign. In addition to funding support, Spire employees will perform maintenance on the trails such as clearing vegetation and limb removal.
Camp Tuckaho – Adventure Center
Thanks to the generosity of Edward Jones, as part of the Her Future is Our Future Campaign, in the spring of 2021 a new High Ropes Challenge Course opened at Camp Tuckaho.
Council has now entered the design phase of the Edward Jones Adventure Center at Camp Tuckaho. This center will give Girl Scouts of all ages an opportunity to be challenged, have fun and share experiences with other Girl Scouts. The cornerstone of the Adventure Center will be free play elements where girls can have a self-propelled, independent experience. More updates will be forthcoming as the project progresses.
Camp Cedarledge – Archery Range
Camp Cedarledge’s new ADA accessible Archery Range opened this June! Girl Scouts of all abilities attending overnight and troop camp throughout the summer will have the opportunity to participate in archery programs at the new range located in the field near Cliff’s End and Golden Glade.
Girl Scouts of Eastern Missouri is grateful to Bass Pro/Cabella’s for their support of this project as part of the Her Future is Our Future Campaign.
Jo Ann Taylor Kindle
Anonymous (2) · Berges Family Foundation · Emerson · Nance Frost
Anonymous · Carolyn Kindle · Edward Jones · Lelia and David Farr · Alison Kindle Hogan · J.E. and L.E. Mabee Foundation · William T. Kemper Foundation · World Wide Technology
Anonymous (2) · Caleres · Cynthia G. Heath · Mr. and Mrs. Donald Ross · Keri L. Westland
Anonymous (2) · Ameren Corporation Charitable Trust · Centene Charitable Foundation · Gertrude and William A. Bernoudy Foundation · Kent Family Foundation · Oculus Inc. · Penny Pennington · Spire
Anonymous · Albrecht Family Foundation · Mary Ann Altergott and Jim Beirne · Crystal and John Beuerlein · Cigna · Clever Little Girl Foundation · Dana Brown Charitable Trust · Laura and Norman Eaker · Alison and John Ferring · Finerty Family Foundation · Laurna C. Godwin · James and Merry Mosbacher · William R. Orthwein Jr. & Laura Rand Orthwein Foundation · Pershing Charitable Trust
Anonymous (2) · Emerson Hermetic Motor · Gene and Joan Slay Charitable Foundation · Jan Holloway · Interco Charitable Trust · Jefferson Foundation · Dawn Kotva · Carolyn W. Losos · James S. McDonnell Family Foundation · Nestlé Purina PetCare Company · PNC · Dave and Suzie Spence · Trio Foundation of St. Louis · Mimi and Greg Twardowski
Barbara C. and Stephen Archer · The Bass Pro Shops and Cabela’s Outdoor Fund · Boniface Foundation · Bonnie and Daniel Barczykowski · Barbara Bowyer · Camilla and Stephen Brauer · Vicki Dawkins · Donna and Eric Doerhoff · Edward Chase Garvey Memorial Foundation · Nancy and Walter Galvin · Barbara and Richard Jacobsmeyer · The Keeley Companies · Alicia McDonnell · Karen Miller and Thomas Miller · The Mysun Charitable Foundation · Megan and Timothy Piechowski · Roy Pfautch · Lewis Rice LLC · Paula and Rodger Riney · Laura and Paul Shaughnessy · Staenberg Family Foundation · Thompson Coburn LLP · Jessica Willingham · Risa Zwerling and Mark Wrighton
Anonymous · Arcturis · Tom and Karla Bakersmith · Susan Barley · Laraine and David Davis · Amy DeSart · Cyndy A. Donato · Wendy and Paul Dyer · Lenny and Chrissy Efthim · Emma Espinoza · First Bank · June McAllister Fowler and Flint W. Fowler · Dr. Larry and Nancy Gelb · Great River Confluence Foundation · Jan and Gabriel Hess · Holly James · Mike and Vicki Kiefer · Shertina Mawuenyega · Kim and John McCurdy · Anne and John McDonnell · Greg and Marcella McDonnell Stevens · Jaime and Christine Mendez · Mildred, Herbert & Julian Simon Foundation · Dana Plonka · Mr. and Mrs. Edward M. Potter · Kerry and Steven Pozaric · Emily Rauh Pulitzer · Kathleen M Ratcliffe · Cathy Rogers · Suzanne Sitherwood and Carl Bouckaert · St. Luke’s Hospital · Katherine Sundararaman · Tarlton Corporation · Susan Thomas · Tracy Family Foundation
Anonymous (2) · Mimi Abbott · Jill and Matt Anderson · Patricia Arnold · Nancy and Marty Akins · Associated Equipment Corp. · Mary Randolph Ballinger · Marcia Barber · Jenny and Chris Bartlow · Bayer Fund · Lisa Bell-Reim and Ron Reim · Beth Bender · Christina and Vincent Bennett · Elizabeth Mannenn Berges · BJC HealthCare · Susan E. Block · Boeing · Sarah and Jason Bowman · Thuy Vi Quach-Braig and Chris Braig · Bob Brinkman · Elizabeth and Robert Bruce · Amy and David Burchardt · Christine Candio · Christine and David Chadwick · Sue Clancy · Jared Colbert · Kathy and Don Costello · Bob and Mary Cox · Anne Croat · Pat Croat · Kathy Dabrowski · Laura Dierberg Ayers and Brock Ayers · Eisenman-McAndrews Family · Sheila Effan · Eric Eoloff and Gina Hand-Eoloff · Mike and Ann Ficken · Adela and Logan Finerty · Maxine Clark and Robert N. Fox · Jerry and Julie Cubbage · Kalen and Jill Fumagalli · Susan Z. Gamble · Linda and Tom Gieseking · Goldman, Sachs & Co. · Jeanna and Tim Gossett · Jade and Mark Halbert · Shelly and Frederick Helfrich · Edward and Karen Hempstead · Wendy J. Henry · Karleen and Thomas Hoerr · Mike and Martha Hogan · Jack and Becky Hood · Tina and Mike Hrevus · Paul and Melissa Hulen · JMT Family Fund · Kristin Johnson · Dee A. Joyner · Susan and Stuart Keck · Jason and Libby Kindle · Paul and Amanda Koehler · Christine and Jon Krueger · Janine and Steven Lawler · Sally and Ned Lemkemeier · Julie H. and Glen Leverenz · Elizabeth and Philip Louis · Joan Malloy · Marla and Mark Maloney · Cynthia Martin · Keith and Diana Marty · MasterCard · Katherine McDonnell · Microsoft Corporation · Julie Morrison · Mary and Harold Mueller · Mark and Jennifer Murray · Marianne and Mike Murphy · Sonni and Michael Nolan · Mr. and Mrs. Bruce A. Olson · Kathy Osborn · Mr. and Mrs. David W. Otto · The Prairie Family · Erin and Catherine Rachmiel · Regional Business Council · Ms. Pamela Kendall Rijos · Lucy M. Rimsky · Laurie Z. Roberts · Carol L. Rogers · Annie and Joe Schlafly · Thomas and Ulrike Schlafly · Sarah Schlichtholz and Justin Anderson · Neal and Kellie Spencer · Mr. and Mrs. Steiner · Leslie and Philip Steinmeyer · Synchrony · Nytasha Taylor · Kate Tichelkamp · Paula Vickers · Wells Fargo Foundation · Claudia J. Wall · Danielle Washington · Richard and Josephine Weil · Jackie Yoon · Linda and Bob Zeman · Sara Zemianek
Anonymous (17) · Bank of America · Barbara Abbett · Crystal Adams · Toba Agarwal · Amber Allen · Barbara Atteln · Linda Aubuchon · Jessica Ballheimer · Terri Banderet · Haley Barteau · Anna and Benjamin Barton · Rebecca Baumgartner · Lauren A. Becker · Josh Bell · Valerie Bell · Jennifer Berends · Kelli Best-Oliver · Melynie Blackshear · Shannon Bodenschatz · Kelly S. and Mark S. Bogda · Angela Bonstead · Elizabeth A. Brinkman · Barbara Brinkman · Mr. and Mrs. Roy J. Brooks · Mary Pat Brown · Laurel “Buff” Burkel · Janine Burkett · Amanda Burtnett · Mr. and Mrs. Frank Bush · Whitney Caldwell · Mr. and Mrs. Robert Cannon · Karen Carey · Tamara Carlton · Morgan Carnes · Shannon Carrus · Susan Cejka · Kimberly Cella · Celia Chojnacki · Jessica Ciccolella-Kahl · Katie and Charles Claggett · John and Julie Cochran · Tracy Coffey · Betsy Cohen · Theresa Cole · Jerico and Stefanie Collins · Jennifer Colona · Amy Connelly · Amy C. and Michael J. Crawford · Rhonda D. Cross · Ashley and Joe Cutrona · David Dankmyer · Amanda Deters · District 4 · Jami Dolby · Suzanne Domalewski · Ms. Ellen Duncan · Chelsea Dunn · Lisa Eichholz · Rhonda K. Eitel · Mari Elliott · Tanya English · Danielle Evans · Heather Eyster · Mrs. Holly Farroll · Kristin Fasnacht · Jennifer Faust · Jasmina Fazlic · Mary F. Felker · Cheryl L. Fichtinger · Susan Fine · Beth Fitzgerald · Mr. Sean Fitzgerald · Lexi Fives · Maureen Flaherty · Shelley Flynn-Harding · Vicky L. Frayne · Jessica Freeman · Barbara and Christopher Ford · Craig and Regina Fowler · Mary Fuller · Kelly Garrett · Hailey Garrow · Amanda Gilbert · Andrew Gillentine · Ellen and Derrick Gooch · Gery Gorla · Joe Gottlob · Mary Ann and Lonnie Guenther · Abbey Gradle · Gerrie Gradle · Akemie Gray · Joanne S. Griffin · Mary Griser · Laura Gubera · Mrs. Constance Gully · Mrs. Lena Haas · Janis Halsey · Cheryl Haney · Dr. Margaret Guest and Mr. Frank Hamsher · Rachel Hanson · Gail Hardeback · Leah Harris · Jo Ellen and Gene T. Hart · Aisha Hasan · Katie Haw · Christine E. Heck · Becca Hefley · Anne Heilig · Jenny Heim · June and Fred Held · Rochelle Henderson · Jillian Heneghan · Sharon and Micheal Hepburn · Mrs. Sharon Hill · Sue Hites · Eric Holt · Amanda Honigfort · Allean J. and Michael W. Horn · John Hoesli · Starkisha Houze · Quincie Humphrey · Catherine Humphreys · Ryan Hyman · Yasbel L. Arce Irizarry · Gayle P. W. Jackson, PhD · Lacey Jacobs · Sarah Javier · Felisa Javier-Holt · Craig Johnson · Michelle K. Johnson · Pam Johnson · Ms. Amy J. Jones · Barbara Jordan · Gail and David Julien · Laura Key · Melissa Kiliman · Frances Kister · Mr. Lee Kling · Laura and Spencer Koch · Ampy Kollman-Moore · Lauren Kornegay Dollar and Nathanael Dollar · Susan and Stuart Krawll · Jenny and Thomas Kyle · Julie and Keith Kulawiec · Laura and Michael Larrabee · Sterling Lawler · Lance LeComb · Amy Leipholtz · Cindy Lewis · Shaun Lindhoff · Michele Lucas · Kathy and John Mack · Marylen Mann · Debbie Marshall · Grey D. Martin · Jeffrey and Sue Mason · Anne Matheis · Ms. Marcia Matthews · Lynette McCloud · Alison McCormack · Erin McMillian · Lauren McSwain · Marcia Mellitz · Melanie and Matt Merlone · Jessica Mikel · MilliporeSigma · Judith and Charles Mitchell · Paul and Laura Miller · Amy Mitchell · Mary Morin · Jamie Mueller · Tracy Mueller · Dawn and John Myers · Kimberly Nast · Melissa and Allen Niedermann · Peter Neidorff · Joan Newman · Sandra Norkaitis · Evelyn Novak · Traci O’Bryan · Chris Ohlemeyer · Mary B. Ohlms · Jeni Oliver · Susan and Joseph Orr · Michelle Osterholt · Aundreya Ottens · Amber Overton · Mary Ann Peckitt · Jessica Perkins · Jill Perry · Gail and Michael Pittroff · Regina Popper · Janice and Daniel Potts · Barbara Quinn · Jamie Reed · Brenda and Eric Reinsfelder · Reinsurance Group of America Inc. · Linda and Thomas Reis · Barbara Reisner · Mr. and Mrs. Chris Reither · Danielle Reynolds · Amber Rickeberg · Kathy Riley · Linda Rocklage · Roselein & Associates, Inc. · Jack Ruhl · Nancy and John Russo · Stephanie Russo · Saint Louis Community Foundation · Jim Schaeffler · Suzanne M. and Mark A. Schlemeier · Donna Schramm · Amber Schroeder · Brooke and Jonathan Scott · Jan Shearer · Diane Sher · Nancy and Roger Shoup · Andrew Shulman · Sarah Siegel and Paul Stein · Dan and Sarah Sise · Alicia and Vincent Skroska · Stephanie Slade · Chris Slagle · Rebecca Soeder · Lauryn Souder · Mariea Snell · Frances Sparks · Angela Spinner · Susan Stepleton · Brooke Stochl · Mrs. E. Katherine St. Cyr and Mr. Peter H. Hubbell · Wanda and Greginald Summers · Prasanna Sundaram · Constance Taylor · Marilyn Teitelbaum · Elijah Thompson · Byron E. Thurmond · Wanda Thurman · Kate Tichelkamp · Annie Tobin-Bartlow · Rita Duran and Wendy Torri · Mr. and Mrs. Joe Touhill · Troop 1751 · Troop 1983 · Troop 2369 · Troop 355 · Barbara Bartley-Turkington · United Health Foundation · Martha Uhlhorn · Mark Utterback · Jennifer Vacha · Deborah and Edwin Vandeven · Kathleen Vaughn · Stephanie and Steven Vehige · Erin Vlasaty · Mary Walsh · Christine and Andy Way · Kelly Weis · John Wendland · Greg Wetmore · Kim E. White Drost · David Whitney · Linda Lockwood and Ralph Wiechart · Kristen Wild · Bettie Williams · Heather Williamson · Dorothy Willming · Isla H. Wilson · Kelly Wilson · Jenny Wippermann · Douglas and Lynn Yaeger · Nicole Yokota · Amy Zentgraf · Michelle Ziemann · Martha Zimmerman