"It teaches them to get along with other girls for one thing." -- Lisa Angle
SIKESTON - Sometimes it can be a little tough trying to work everything into a few short summer months. But amid all the hustle and bustle, local and area girls always seem to make room for an event that has become a tradition in many families.
Happy Trails Day Camp is about more than getting away from home for the day. It's a way of getting back to nature, learning new things and having a variety of experiences.
"It teaches them to get along with other girls for one thing," said Lisa Angle, who is co-directing the camp with Karen Bain this year. "And since we have girls from throughout the area, they have a chance to get to know girls they wouldn't normally meet. Also, the girls don't come with their troops, they come as individuals, so that helps them get to know other girls."
Registration for girls in grades K-12 is currently taking place for this year's session, slated for May 30 through June 1 on the Floyd Ferrell Farms. In case of rain, the Day Camp site will be the gymnasium behind Shady Acres Church of Christ on Ables Road.
The cost is $20 for registered Girl Scouts which will cover a patch, badge, activities, T-shirt and meals. Girls who are not in the Scouting program may attend by paying $25 to cover camp fees and insurance.
The deadline to register is May 10.
Girls who would like to attend Day Camp but cannot afford it may apply for a campership by filling out an application and sending it with a $5 deposit. Funds are limited and the application and deposit must be received by the Girl Scout Office no later than May 3. Parents will be notified of acceptance or regret.
"This way girls who aren't Girl Scouts can be Girl Scouts for three days and have a lot of fun," added Angle. "Some of the girls then decide they want to become Girl Scouts and some of the mothers might decide they want to be leaders, which we really need."
Day Camp will last from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. Thursday through Saturday at the Ferrell Farms location. Thursday night campers will spend their time at the Sikeston Country Club pool from 7-9 p.m. and on Friday a camp-out is planned at Ferrell Farms.
"This year's Day Camp is going to be centered around American pride as a way of paying tribute to our country," noted Angle. "We're going to have a lot of fun like having a country fair where each unit will have a booth. We're also going to have a dessert contest and a dunking booth where the leaders get dunked."
While they're having fun, Girl Scouts will have an opportunity to work for badges. Brownies will earn the Wave the Flag Try-It, while Juniors will earn the United We Stand badge. The P.A.T. program or Girl Scout Leadership Award will be offered to Cadettes and Seniors.
Remembering the good times she had at Day Camp when she was younger, Angle most vividly recalls Clay Mountain. "It was the highlight of Day Camp back then. And I remember 10 or 12 of us piling in one vehicle to go to Day Camp when it was near Bloomfield and it taking 45 minutes to an hour to get there. But a lot of mothers didn't work then and now they do, which makes it easier where we have it which is just a few minutes away and yet it's still secluded and the girls still get away from radios and televisions."
A trained nurse or qualified First Aid person will be at the site each day. All currently registered Girl Scouts are covered by the GSUSA accident insurance.
Registration forms can be obtained at the Cotton Boll Girl Scout Office at 201 S. New Madrid St.